Thursday, March 8, 2012

Ivory tower (2)

many companies have those research departments. Those propellerheads who feed revolutionary ideas to rest of the organization, willing or not.

It's fascinating how different types of people work in these different units, research, r&d and production. Production guys are conservative nitpickers who don't like anything new or changing (a small exaggeration if you may). And r&d guys, depending on the situation and person, either calculative project managers or techno-oriented geeks.

Research people are different, too.Some child-minded, one-track-minds with awesome concentration on details. Some others are dreamers with difficulties to end anything.

Question remains whether we should relieve the tension between these different parties? Like earthing a bit the propellerheads and loosening up in the production. Actually no, I think. Part of the strength of the researchers is that they don't know too much about the evil everyday world, they should be left in their ivory tower. Research is intricate business where you travel basically based on faith. If the faith trembles your creativity starts coughing. That is of course if we are going to create something totally new, not just more me-too.

I could be wrong but this is the view I've got from working on both sides. BTW: it is interesting and educating to change for example from research to production and observe how slowly your thinking actually adopts the new mindset required by the new job. These changes are valuable not only for expanded knowledge and diversification but they also make you aware of your own static mindsets and prejudice.

First published 2007: