The Nascent Transparency Movement Shifts Gears

Two recent blogposts, one simply titled Transparency by Amarpreet Kalkat of Frrole, and the other labeled Sharing by Sumanth Raghavendra of Deck, have given embrynonic radical transparency movement a boost.

This movement in India started many years back when NPC started published its internal metrics (see the example for 2009 & 2010). Initially this caused a stir. Luckily, appreciation, especially, from entrepreneurs quickly kicked in and this level of transparency became the norm until the handoff of NPC to a corporatized setup.

Transparency movementThe transparency and sharing tradition carried over to iSPIRT. Nowadays, iSPIRT routinely shares the good, bad and ugly, often in the form of a “journeyline”, so that everybody in the ecosystem can learn from its experiences (see PNCamp’s example here). It even publishes its volunteer model so that other community efforts can build on its lessons. In fact, now, the concept of radical transparency is baked into iSPIRT’s guiding principles itself (alongside polycentric governance and open-access to public goods).

Early last year entrepreneurs started embracing the radical transparency movement. This started with PlaybookRTs. In these PlaybookRTs, the facilitator, always an in-the-saddle entrepreneur gets “metaphorically naked” till all the other 10 participants are (metaphorically) naked too. This nakedness sets the stage for tremendous give-and-take of insights and learning. Today, there are almost two-dozen entrepreneurs who regularly “pass knowledge to others in a pay-forward model” in these PlaybookRTs. They go by the name of iSPIRT Mavens. You’ll be happy to see that this list includes some of the most prominent software product entrepreneurs.

The example of Mavens motivated Raj Sheth of RecruiterBox (an iSPIRT Product Circle donor) to embrace radical transparency by sharing their December marketing plan openly. The recent blogposts by Amarpreet of Frrole and Sumanth of Deck have given this trend more momentum. Kudos to them!

This is an important dynamic that is playing out in our ecosystem. This type of radical sharing increases the tacit knowledge in the ecosystem and it drives faster learning for everybody. It’s particularly helpful for novice entrepreneurs. It builds trust since the sharing is entrepreneur to entrepreneur with no middlemen involved. All these soft benefits power faster growth of our software product industry.

Come, take inspiration from Raj, Amarpreet and Sumanth. Join the transparency movement and help India become a Product Nation!