December 8, 2023

What’s music got to do with it?

Over the last week, I’ve been working though my thinking on why a business is a system for making and keeping promises, and where Roles and Props fit into that model of what a business is.

First, thank you for putting up with what was probably a fairly tedious set of posts.

Second, what do you think about this model? What do you think of my explanation of it?

Tell me, I’d love to know.

Third, you might be wondering after those explanations why I keep going on about a musical score.

What’s music got to do with any of this?

Well, the music analogy is my attempt to describe how to document how your business goes about making and keeping its promises, and how that document should be used to support people in doing that. The idea of a musical score captures some important features for me:

Context: every player in an orchestra, right down to the triangle player, gets to see the whole score. They know where their contribution fits. They know where they come in, and when they go out again. And they know why their notes count.

Level: a score tells players what to play, when, not how to play, except for some hints designed to remind them of the context.

Timelessness: a score gives the notes to be played. The instruments playing those notes can change, according to fashion, technology or availability. The experience produced will be different, yet recognisably the same.

Interpretation: unlike a flowchart, or workflow diagram, or automated tasklist, a score allows for interpretation, by players and by whole orchestras. The score is the starting point of the performance, not it’s end point. It’s a floor, not a ceiling. You might even call it a springboard.

Does this make sense to you?

Again, let me know. I’m a fan of feedback.

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Thank you.