lots of ideas

[Cartoon part of the Microsoft Blue Monster Series. Backstory from Steve and Kris etc.]
Tim Kitchin of Glasshouse Partners left the following comment on my big “Microsoft Partner” entry:

Not that I have clue what you’re going to do for Microsoft…but I sort of applaud MS for pushing out the ‘ecosystem’ word in favour of the old fashioned ‘partner’.
On the other hand partner is a really clumsy word to describe the array of interdependencies and power imbalances which really exist out there.
A lot of richness gets lost when you clump 750,000 companies into one category like ‘partners’.
If you can provoke some more structured conversations around mutual value-exchange, that would be a big step forward for them.

Here are some thoughts:
1. “Is “Partner” the best word possible? Maybe, maybe not. Then again, if I had a small, tech-orientated company- a small town consultancy in Vermont with only one or two employees, say, I imagine I would LOVE being thought of as a “partner”of Microsoft, as opposed to just a “middleman” or a “user”. It would convey to my customers that, whatever others may think about me, at the end of the day, MS takes me seriously. Not a bad message to be sending out from Vermont.
2. “Microsoft Ecosystem Member.” Not sure if that works too well, either.
3. What Microsoft does is so vast and complex, it’s hard getting the big picture sometimes [Hint: they don't just make stuff for PCs]. The good news is, there’s so much going on in the company, I’m not too worried about running out of cool, new stuff to write about.
4. This project I’m doing with Microsoft is not the result of some grand, evil scheme on my part. It started very small, only a couple of weeks ago. Somebody inside Microsoft asked me to draw some cartoons for the Partner Group. A couple of dozen rough sketches and e-mail exchanges later, I thought it would be more interesting to just post my efforts online, and see the conversation we were having privately mutate into something much bigger. Happily, they liked the idea and gave me an immediate greenlight. But I truly believe that this spirit of spontaneity is what will keep the project interesting in the long term. Rock on.

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Hugh MacLeod is a genius.  Genius.

Seth Godin
Best Selling Author

His work acknowledges the absurdity of workaday life, while also encouraging employees to respond with passion, creativity, and non-conformity...   MacLeod’s work is undeniably an improvement over the office schlock of yore. At its best, it’s more honest, and more cognizant of the entrepreneurial psyche, while still retaining some idealism.

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Lydia Depillis

Last year my State of the College address was 76 slides loaded with data. This year it was 14 cartoons that were substantially more memorable.

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Former President, Babson College

"There are only two daily newsletters that I look forward to opening and reading every time they show up to my inbox: Seth Godin's and gapingvoid."

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CEO, Zappos

In moments of indecision I glance at the wall [to Hugh's work] for guidance.

Brian Clark
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