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The Entrepreneurial Free Agent and Dejobbed Small Business R&D Lab
Rants and Raves #02
Few Heads, Many Hats...
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Table of Contents

  1. The 'Few Heads - Many Hats' nanocorp management dilemma
  2. Why nanocorps? Why now?
  3. Points of interest at the dojo

The 'Few Heads - Many Hats' nanocorp management dilemma - A preliminary report...

This issue of Rants and Raves was delayed due to the BIGGEST CHALLENGE of nanocorp management... the 'Few Heads - Many Hats' time management dilemma. We are all plagued with the 'so much to do, so little time' problem. The more roles you play, the more hats you wear, the more stuff there is to do.

Since a nanocorp is a tiny, diversified corporate conglomerate, there are MANY parallel sets of LOTS of hats to wear for EACH nanocorper. In our 'ruthlessly small' corporation with no possibility for 'throwing more bodies' at a problem, EFFECTIVE SYSTEMS AUTOMATION is our only alternative.

The project management and team management software marketplace

In the larger world of conventional business, there are two general categories of proposed complexity-management software solutions. 'Project-centric' approaches optimize planning and complexity-handling (MS-Project '98, IMSI's TurboProject Pro and AEC's venerable FastTrack Schedule). Team-oriented approaches (Avantos' ManagePro, Alexsys' Team '98 and MS-TeamManager '97) optimize human resource usage and task and/or goal planning.

In the past when we needed human/task/goal management, we always used the multi-user network version of ManagePro. Avantos created the team-oriented project management marketplace with its innovative ManagePro project when Windows was still 3.1. Then even the best applications were still 'personal' productivity solutions rather than the multi-user team productivity package offered by ManagePro.

But alas, Avantos bit the dust. However, ManagePro, at its long-standing version 3.2 is still available in both single-user and multi-user versions at the ManagePro site. (Performance Solutions Technology, LLC. of Seal Beach, California, acquired rights to this still-brilliant piece of software. They offer a 30-day free trial version.)

ManagePro still has one of the most innovative, user-configurable user interface frameworks of ANY commercial software we have seen. For this reason, ManagePro is in our 'Software Hall of Fame'.

In search of a nanocorp-friendly team-management software solution

When we tried to use the multi-user version of ManagePro on our current TCP/IP-based intranet, we hit a bump. (Note: If you don't need multi-user access or you are on a more traditional corporate LAN, take a look at ManagePro for your project management needs.)

So, with ManagePro as our standard, we went looking for an Internet-aware, multi-user, team-oriented, role-based project and task management software solution to our nanocorp many-hats problem.

WE KISSED A LOT OF FROGS SO YOU WON'T HAVE TO! Jim spent the better part of his waking hours for five days downloading, installing and testing every piece of project management, team management, time management and personal information management software he could get his hands on. The effort was agonizing, but enlightening.

Bottom line? We have a front-running candidate for the JFS Consulting nanocorp management system! We'll identify it in next week's newsletter and have more to say about it then. In the meantime, we'll admit to our TOTAL surprise that both the first and second place solution candidates are JAVA-based!?!?

Why nanocorps? Why now?

At one level, sohodojo appears to be the contrarian raving of a couple of folks disgruntled by the state of corporate work life and rampant consumerism which plague our World today.

As such sohodojo is little different from similar 'personal rant' sites which publish alternative perspectives on how to think about and live Life.

We do believe passionately in the rise of the nanocorp business model. But the nanocorp is much more than a flag-waving Cause to us.

The nanocorp and its implications are the foundation of the business model on which our own nanocorp, JFS Consulting, is grounded. We ARE a nanocorp so we can fully and completely understand the needs and motivations of the nanocorp marketplace. Through this intimate experience comes understanding. JFS Consulting, through our subsidiary sohodojo, will offer products and services to meet the needs of the nanocorp marketplace.

Assumptions and dynamics which give rise to the nanocorp business model

A number of societal trends are facilitating the rise of the nanocorp business model. In no particular order and non-exhaustively, these seminal influences pushing toward the rise of nanocorps include:

The nanocorp business model - A response to trends and opportunities

Social trends and market opportunities beg the development of a sustainable, Internet-based business model which does NOT assume that 'Bigger is better' nor that 'How much is more important than how well.' Neither accretive growth nor disproportionate wealth production are required to achieve business and personal success.

Our response to this perceived need for a viable, home-based business model is envisioned in the 'nanocorp'; the ruthlessly small, Internet-based, diversified corporate conglomerate. A nanocorp is an internet business-incubator, writ small, with a few strategic twists intended to keep it working the 'empty spaces' in the marketplace dominated by the Market Titans Du Jour.

A nanocorp perspective on new job and wealth creation

Interestingly enough, the apparent constraints self-selected by the nanocorper---no accretive growth of the workforce, and quality of Life optimization over wealth production---do not preclude a nanocorp from producing substantial returns in terms of traditional business measures; job creation and wealth production.

We'll create new jobs through the incubation of new nanocorps and through outsourcing non-core workload to conventional business (the nanocorp being a subtype of virtual corporation in this regard).

We very well may generate greater financial returns than necessary to sustain the targeted quality of Life. If this is the case, we'll just have to learn to deal with it!

Points of interest at the dojo

In case you missed our first issue of sohodojo's Rants and Raves newsletter, you'll find both text and HTML versions here in our newsletter archive.

The premiere issue of Rants and Raves contains a (relatively) cogent explanation of 'What is a nanocorp?' and introduces our nanocorp, JFS Consulting, as a prototypical 'ruthlessly small' diversified corporate conglomerate.

sohodojo-sponsored webrings

Sohodojo hosts two webrings; one to showcase nanocorps and their subsidiary web businesses and the other to humorously encourage website integrity through the solicitation of strong negative feedback and suggestions.

The Master WebRing of the Nanocorps is a 'ring of rings' where individual nanocorps showcase their subsidiary web businesses. Each nanocorp links to the ring through an 'Open Business Model' doorway page, and each of the nanocorp's subsidiary businesses link to their respective sub-ring through an Open Business Model page as well. Go to the homepage for the Master Webring of the Nanocorps.

The Open Fork Alliance, while not exclusive to nanocorps, serves member sites which are dedicated to an "Open Fork Policy"... that is, we fully disclose and resolve any 'Fork-O-Grams' sent to our sites via the 'Fork-O-Gram' service provided by the good folks at Forkinthehead .... because flawed websites deserve a fork in the head!

Since a nanocorp is only as good as the personal reputations of its founder/owner/only-employees, it follows that nanocorp-owned websites are seriously interested in ensuring the highest quality of a website visit. Visitor relations are paramount.

Click on the link here for the homepage of The Open Fork Alliance.

Have you tried the best mind-food on the Web?

You haven't lived until you taste our RIBS? That's Really Important Books and Stuff. Like fifty zillion other sites on the web, we are an Amazon Associate (USA and UK). But we believe in freedom of choice, so check out the FatBrain and options to enjoy the RIBS we recommend too. We've put together the essential nanocorper reading list.

 Clicking by Faith Popcorn Particularly appropriate to these first two issues of the newsletter, you should consider reading Faith Popcorn's "Clicking: 17 Trends that drive your business -- and your life."

 Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth And for a wonderful 'heady' read, either for the first time or if you haven't read it since its early seventies publication, we suggest Buckminster Fuller's "Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth." The insights you will reap from this book regarding the dynamics shaping the Internet-based information-services economy make OMSE a perfect read for the New Millennium.

As always, thanks for reading this issue of sohodojo's Rants and Raves newsletter,
    --Jim Salmons and Timlynn Babitsky--
    Hosts, sohodojo

About the sohodojo Rants and Raves newsletter

We'd like to keep sending you our weekly newsletter. By making it weekly, we guarantee it will be short. Okay, occasionally, when we get on a good rant we might drag on a bit, but we'll try not to do that too often.

We know you have a hectic, busy life. It isn't easy remembering to drop by sohodojo to see what's brewing. The newsletter addresses this need. You get an easy way to keep abreast of what we're doing and thinking at the dojo. We get a chance to entice you to visit if a newsletter topic sufficiently piques your interest.

Please, feel free to forward this newsletter to others you think may be interested in knowing about sohodojo, the nanocorp and our approach to the Internet-based small business revolution.

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