John Lilly, a long-time member of the metacool blog roll, was named CEO of Mozilla today. I’ve been lucky enough to work with John at the Stanford d.school, spend many hours together swapping war stories about business and the nature of product development, and even toil for a few days as fellow Lobbyists.
Not only am I happy for John, I’m really psyched for Mozilla, too. Firefox is one of my favorite products. It is incredibly reliable, very easy to use, and is the most personalized product in my possession. I use it for play and for work; in any given day I spend four hours staring in to the Web as mediated by Firefox. It’s safe to say that Mozilla is one of my favorite brands, right up there with Apple, BMW, The Economist, Honda, The Cortiina, Subaru, McGuckin Hardware, and McMenamins Kennedy School. I can’t wait to see where the Mozilla goes with John, and vice versa.
That last vice versa is crucial. As I wrote about in MIT’s Innovation journal last year, John and the Mozilla community represent a new way of getting things done, one which requires a new paradigm of leadership and participation. They live in a world that thrives on transparency and openness, a place where web thinking is freedom thinking. We can all learn a lot about innovation and the art of getting stuff done from Mozilla. One thing for sure: this is a story with many chapters left to go.
(you didn’t think I was going to write this without saying that, did you?)