To get better performance out of your organization, it starts with information design.

Most organizations use predefined information templates designed by someone for some other business and apply them to their business.

These templates are highly configurable, but they all run on the assumptions that all businesses are the same.

There are a few forces in play here:

Mimetic desire for organizations wanting to look like the model organization

Customer expectations of certain documentation and confirmation of activities (establishing trust)

Compliance and reporting for third parties (governments, etc)

Information systems play a role across the whole value stream from idea to raw material to the end customer. And the issue is that information is not linear. Information is iterative.

Automation is built on the idea that information flow is linear. In certain cases, information flow appears to be linear and that works, at least for a while.

But in the vast majority of cases, information flow is iterative. While most applications recognize that information changes over time, the change is far more circuitous and loopier than imagined in those systems.

Obviously, that’s where the humans come in. Humans cause their own special breed of chaos…They add, subtract, confuse, conflate, multiply, divide and generally muddle their way through looking for some kind of optimization. Humans have a habit of wrecking automation….

And this is the opportunity for artificial intelligence. Where basic automation flails when faced with too many options. Artificial intelligence is built for options. Artificial intelligence can be trained to look ahead and look at scenarios and make “better” decisions than humans can.

Right now, general purpose artificial intelligence functions like that person that we all know that thinks that they are smarter than everyone else, but also lacks common sense.

At some point artificial intelligence becomes smarter, but the forking path on artificial intelligence is the difference between gut instinct and information based rational decisions.

Artificial intelligence will come up with the best solution based on what is known and documented at the time, but it can’t make good decisions based on what is not known. Humans with their gut instincts and their irrationality will ultimately come up with better decisions.

And that raises the big question about innovation and artificial intelligence…