My Week: Jasper Westaway, CEO of oneDrum

The collaboration enthusiast boldly goes where not many entrepreneurs have been before: politics.

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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

George Lucas and team go to extraordinary lengths to maintain continuity throughout the Star Wars works. I mention this because it contrasts with the latest Star Trek movie I went to see on Monday in which a black hole leaves the crew in an alternate reality conveniently devoid, therefore, of any continuity constraints.

These are the type of things that interest me, this week more than most. My company is all about finding better ways for teams to work together, perfecting the combination of the latest technologies with our ingrained, innate approaches to collaboration. We need continuity in terms of 'tried and tested' ideas – we’re the same species we were a millennia ago, after all – and discontinuity when new technologies can be forged to meet our needs and work with us to do what we have to do together, but better.

Tuesday was my fortnightly flight up to Stirling to meet with the engineering team. They are a phenomenally talented team in my opinion, and this week I was accompanied by a team from a venture capital firm undertaking due diligence with an eye to investing in our next round. Not wishing to jump the gun, but I think they drew the same conclusion.

It was a good time to squeeze in a board meeting too, which, with our directors joining the meeting from many different locations, is always a great time to use our service in anger... It allows us all to work in Microsoft Office documents at the same time, seeing what everyone else is doing in real time.

I flew back down to London on Wednesday to present at a collaboration event, on the theme 'Collaboration is broken', which stirred some interesting and fiery responses from the 200 delegates who had come to listen to it.

Thursday was spent interviewing potential hires and answering questions from the 1000 beta testers on our new product launch. The early adopters feel like they’re part of the family... which is just the way it should be!

Friday had me updating numerous journalists on our recent beta launch. I decided to launch my own political party founded on the principal that collaboration is broken in today’s society, which is manifested in our frustrations with one another, our government, the economy and our day-to-day working lives. The oneDrum party believes in the wisdom of many in finding innovative and pragmatic solutions to real world problems, and its manifesto can be viewed at www.onedrum.org.uk.

This year has been good to me. Every week sets me up to take on the challenges of the next week, and this week has been no different. Whilst I can’t rely on ejecting and igniting our ship’s warp drive reactor cores to save the day, I know we’re doing the right things in the right way.

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