Musings from Mike Atkinson on Internet strategy, usability, and more...

The power of Us

After over 10 years in this wild-and-wooly Internet world, I’ve heard of a lot of Next Big Things. But I just read an article that perfectly captures the true Next Wave for the Internet, at least from my perspective and observations.

And why is this that Next Big Thing? Because it’s organic. No one has individually created or driven it – because no one can. Read on…

An exceptional article appeared on a recent cover of BusinessWeek called “The Power of Us: Mass collaboration on the Internet is shaking up business” [free registration required…and worth it].

This should be required reading for every business owner, executive, manager, and anyone interested in the future of organizations and the Internet!

I can’t add much more, except that this is what the Internet is all about. The more corporations and others have forced people to do what they want you to do, instead of finding what people truly need and helping them meet those needs, the more they have – or will – slip into obscurity.

This gradual shift is changing the face of global business and commerce, and once we grasp this, we’ll better lead our organizations into a fruitful future.

While at Youth Specialties, I directed the creation of an online software much like SurveyMonkey, a way to gather research data and opinions on the Web. It was so helpful in connecting with our customers to learn of their ideas and feedback, whether about a book title or cover, or a concept for a product or event. And the results caused us to make changes or adjustments that were very effective.

I also worked with Gospelcom this year in gathering feedback from member organizations on ways to improve their annual conference. Gospelcom gets it – it’s all about meeting the needs of their constituency, not just doing what you think needs to be done or guessing.


How can you ride the wave of collaboration?


  1. Mike,

    Glad to see your blog mentioned on Web Evangelism bulletin. Could not agree with your observations more. We are trying to build a site that will be totally customer centric with input from the world wide body of christ centered around collaboration. We have used survey monkey, polls and the old shoe leather type of market research. Please visit the web site and give us some feedback if you desire. We are soon to undergo a total redesign making it more current, interactive and reflective of the world wide body hoping in the next 2 – 3 years to have 3 or 5 languages up.

    Getting real feedback from those in not so high-tech situations is difficult but necessary. Any observations would help. You may enjoy one of our associate director’s blog – Dave Hackett at

    bill sunderland    Thursday, July 7, 2005    #
  2. Thanks for the link, good stuff!
    Paladin    Sunday, July 10, 2005    #
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