March 26th, 2006

bswing

Here's an Idea: Let Everyone Have Ideas

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/26/business/yourmoney/26mgmt.html?ei=5090&en=0d90ed5116e769d0&ex=1301029200

March 26, 2006
Under New Management
Here's an Idea: Let Everyone Have Ideas
By WILLIAM C. TAYLOR

LIKE many top executives, James R. Lavoie and Joseph M. Marino keep a close eye on the stock market. But the two men, co-founders of Rite-Solutions, a software company that builds advanced — and highly classified — command-and-control systems for the Navy, don't worry much about Nasdaq or the New York Stock Exchange.

Instead, they focus on an internal market where any employee can propose that the company acquire a new technology, enter a new business or make an efficiency improvement. These proposals become stocks, complete with ticker symbols, discussion lists and e-mail alerts. Employees buy or sell the stocks, and prices change to reflect the sentiments of the company's engineers, computer scientists and project managers — as well as its marketers, accountants and even the receptionist.

"We're the founders, but we're far from the smartest people here," Mr. Lavoie, the chief executive, said during an interview at Rite-Solutions' headquarters outside Newport, R.I. "At most companies, especially technology companies, the most brilliant insights tend to come from people other than senior management. So we created a marketplace to harvest collective genius."

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