Thursday, November 24, 2005

New Ways of Determining Value. Cont....

Elizabeth Albrycht very kindly commented on my Peter Drucker post. It is really worth reading.

In my reply, I put my hands up.

The big stumbling block was a helpful definition of an organisation (which, in my way, I have resolved) and what is a relationship (which I have also attempted to resolve). The next problem is that in doing so I identify two elements. The first is what I call 'tokens' and the other the 'values' associated with those tokens interpreted by both sides in an information exchange.

At least this approach put PR at the centre of the debate but leaves many problems to be resolved.

I accept I am using the term 'money' very broadly. The idea that financial value is underpinned by institutions' interpretation of value in $/£ etc. is almost overwhelming and, in my view, dangerous in a global and information rich age.

I see things like 'environmental markets' as dangerous. These are metaphors of metaphors and rely on relative values without being explicit about the nature of relativity. This is only valid if the mechanism for relativity is robust. In most cases, of course, it is not - one of the reasons I think Fombrun and his reputation quotient is wrong.

Elizabeth's comment about scarcity is very germane. Information used to be in short supply (one of the reasons for what we call the 'Dark Ages'). Now we have an over abundance. Perhaps importance/relevancy is the deciding market factor today. This makes the ideas of Jerome Glenn and Theodore Gordon very relevant as well as the associated challenges.

The wall I have now is summed up in Elizabeth's last two paragraphs.

I just know there is a solution there but having the thinking time is just so hard. I think the solution is in the nature of relationships. The problem is that common knowledge of tokens is wrapped up in cultural ideas of values (another observation made by Elizabeth). In any information transaction there can be both the creation of common understanding of value and a further set of values that are created by the parties that are not known/understood by each other. So far the neuropsychology works but nothing else.

I will keep pondering. Help is most welcome too.