"As house prices fall, a huge amount of financial folly is being exposed. You only learn who has been swimming naked when the tide goes out – and what we are witnessing at some of our largest financial institutions is an ugly sight." Warren Buffett
The scarcity that has characterised this financial meltdown, perhaps more than any downturn before it, is of-course the scarcity in trust. It continues to paralyse the banking system, continues to damage business, sometimes beyond repair, and has largely confirmed to your average punter their darkest suspicions about the motivations of those remote and unreal city types.
It's interesting then, isn't it, that in other walks of business and life it is the exact opposite that is powering something of a revolution in the form of the rise in social technologies. Social technologies come from an entirely different place than productivity technologies. One is about co-creation, sharing, ideas, respect. The other is about control, analysis, security. One is about transparency, the other is about complexity. One is open, the other closed.
The reality is that the emerging economy has a very different set of rules. One facilitated above all by transparency and trust. A different kind of swimming naked, if you like. The good news about the meltdown is that it has presented us with quite possibly the best opportunity we've ever had to redefine the value system for business. Lets not squander it.