Date of publication: March 1999

"Fixing Hamlet Good"

by Michael Finley
Copyright 1998 by Michael Finley

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Why Change Doesn't Work:
Why Initiatives Go Wrong and How to Try Again and Succeed
Harvey Robbins, Michael Finley
Hardcover
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[IMAGE]

A Master of the Wired World?

I just got my author's copies of a new book from Financial Times Management (London), MASTERS OF THE WIRED WORLD: Cyberspace Speaks Out.

What's remarkable is that this collection of manifestos about the new age a'dawning contains proclamations by Tony Blair, Al Gore, Charles Handy, Nicholas Negroponte, Arthur C. Clarke, Alvin Toffler ... and me.

Anne C. Leer, editor

To order, click here. Discounted price is $18.87 from Amazon.


I've been wrestling for years with a certain frustration. I'll be reading a story, or watching a movie or play, and it will occur to me that the characters would not get all tied into knots if they only shared the information they had with one another.

In fiction and in theater, whole plots are carried along by well-intentioned characters misunderstanding one another, or not knowing what the audience knows. Without this ignorance, the stories could not advance to their exciting conclusions - usually a combination of gruesome action and mental discovery.

So I thought, what if we used information technology to force characters to do data-dumps with one another? If characters told one another all they know upfront, they could better evaluate one another's intentions, and resolve storylines without the gruesome endgame.

Imagine the characters of Hamlet, assembled in a real-time, online chatroom, where this group searches for a peaceful, non-rapier soltion to the troubles in Denmark.

GHOST: My queen and my brother put poison in my ear and stole my throne.

GERTRUDE: That's a lie. Besides, the night before you said you were tired of being king.

GHOST: I said I was tired of reception lines. I liked being a despot.

GERTRUDE: Sorry about that.

HAMLET: Father, correct me if I'm on the wrong track here. But I'll bet you'd like me to go on a tormented suicidal killing rampage, avenge your death, wipe out your dynasty, and turn your kingdom over to armed foreigners. Right?

GHOST: Actually, I was just hoping you'd give my brother a stern talking-to.

GERTRUDE: You know, Hamlet, your father was far from perfect. He was funneling royal revenues into an alchemy project at the university in Copenhagen. He was throwing good money after bad. Your uncle and I stepped in to stabilize the treasury. For the good of the people. That's all we ever wanted.

CLAUDIUS: Plus, I had the hots for your mom big time. You know, forbidden love. Now that we're married, I'm thinking, what was with that? Also, we were all raised by the Medicis and had terrible role models. It's not our fault we grew up to be conspiratorial murderers!

POLONIUS: And you know, son, I have nothing against you, son, but all your rebellious talk makes me think you're a little cuckoo, and not a suitable choice for my daughter Ophelia.

HAMLET: Gee, the last thing I want to do, then, is stab you through the curtain while you eavesdrop on my tortured conversations, then. From now on, all you have to do is mention your concerns to me. I think you'll discover that I'm intense, but I'm fair.

OPHELIA: He's my melancholy baby! Although, to be honest, Horatio does seem a little more down to earth. And he has those dreamy brown eyes.

LAERTES: I think I've got a bad duplex configuration. Can anyone read this? Hello?

GHOST: The truth is, I just wanted wanted a little attention. Being dead is a drag compared to being king.

HAMLET: Mother, I'm sorry I accused you of incest and murder most foul.

GERTRUDE: Oh, I can't be mad at you, my son. Here, let me clasp you to my bosom!

HAMLET: Truth is, I didn't really know Yorick all that well. He had the soul of a jester, but the breath of a Viking. Well, I guess we can all limp along about the way we've been doing then. For Act V, why don't we have a good old-fashioned Danish barbecue?

ROSENKRANTZ: Chiclet?

GUILDENSTERN: Thanks. I wonder what's playing at the Tivoli.

FORTINBRAS: I still don't know what I'm doing in this play.

[logoff omnes]

Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure!
Get your signed copy of
The NEW Why Teams Don't Work
by Mike & Harvey Robbins
from Berrett-Koehler Publishers
Just click on the book cover!
A fully revised second edition of this award-winning classic
by Harvey Robbins and Michael Finley
Paperback

Winner, Financial Times/Booz Allen & Hamilton Global Business Book Award, Best Management Book - The Americas, 1995


Table of contents and sample chapters of this book...


Just click on the book cover to order your signed copy for only $12.95.
Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure!
Table of contents and sample chapters of this book...
Why Change Doesn't Work:
Why Initiatives Go Wrong and How to Try Again and Succeed
Harvey Robbins, Michael Finley
Hardcover
Just click on the book cover to order your signed copy for only $12.95.
Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure!
"This is the first treatise on change we've seen that is actually entertaining. The authors cover human and organizational barriers to change and change theories, and then take a tour of management theory that's guaranteed to upset every reader at one point or another." -- HR ONLINE

Table of contents and sample chapters of this book...

Why not bookmark Mike's columns for your weekly enjoyment?

Stimulate the economy, give a poet a dollar.

I enjoyed serving this essay up for you, and I did it for free. But this writer is currently out of work, and a bit of revenue would gladden his heart. If you'd like to contribute to this site, consider dropping a $1 tip in the "Honor Box" here. Just click the CLICK TO PAY image here. Thanks - Mike
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Get your signed copy of
The NEW Why Teams Don't Work
by Mike & Harvey Robbins
from Berrett-Koehler Publishers

Just click on the book cover!

Click Here!

Stimulate the economy, give a poet a dollar.

I enjoyed serving this essay up for you, and I did it for free. But I am a few clients lighter right now than I need to be, and a bit of revenue never hurts. If you'd like to contribute to this site, consider dropping a $1 tip in the "Honor Box" here. Think of it as a voluntary subscription. Just click the CLICK TO PAY image here. Thanks! - Mike Amazon Honor System Click Here to Pay Learn More

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