Posts in category: Leadership

Visualising De Waag

Visualising De Waag

I recently had the great privilege of visiting De Waag Society in Amsterdam. I think of De Waag as a modern day art and technology guild (like the historical craft guilds), engaging in cross-disciplinary research, collaborative discovery, and civic...
Cross-ed FTW

Cross-ed FTW

I had the privilege to attend the final presentation of MediaLAB Amsterdam students recently. The message from students and staff is clear: there is immense value in cross-disciplinary and cross-cultural team-based learning. Cross-ed rules! It is inspiring and...
9,000 year commitment

9,000 year commitment

In 1759 Arthur Guinness signed a 9,000 year lease for the brewery in Dublin. Now that is commitment to a vision. Can you imagine signing a 5 or 10 year lease for your office today?!! What conviction must one have to think this far ahead? How confident must Arthur...
Driving over vs walking around potholes

Driving over vs walking around potholes

Driving a car along a potholed road is like applying brute force to solve a problem. You are going to feel the effects of the potholes. The harder you drive the solution, the more you will encounter resistance, and the more noise and dust you will throw up. An...

From big external to small internal

From one of many discussions with the ineffable Bob Jacobson. Here on control, drivers for action, influence, and empowerment. Global village Village global People power Personal empowerment Mass Personal Fast and sterile Slow and rich Big Small (appropriate)...
We don’t have to have it all figured out

We don’t have to have it all figured out

Tackling complex problems in a world that is changing quickly is like travelling through multiple airports in succession. We are faced with different situations, stimuli and challenges to solve. And just like ravening through airports, we don’t have to figure...

The Divine One

In the business media, we love to celebrate the Divine One – like Steve Jobs. Undoubtedly, Apple would not be where it is today without Steve Jobs. But at the same time, we tend to forget that Steve Jobs would not have been able to make his contributions without...
We get what we measure

We get what we measure

“…the best and brightest are now working on ways to save fractions of pennies through efficiency instead of product development. And the problem lies in the way that businesses and the financial markets measure success.” — Clayton Christensen, Harvard...
Excuses for not improving

Excuses for not improving

These common excuses keep organisations stuck repeating the same mistakes or unethical behaviours. Tradition: We have always done this. Rules: We just do what we are told we have to do. Relativity: But everyone is doing it. Scope: Who cares? This doesn’t affect...
Blinded by potential?

Blinded by potential?

Seeing the potential in a person or a situation is great. It is one of the strengths of being a problem solver, a designer, a fixer. But we mustn’t let that blind us to the reality: that potential we see so clearly may not ever be realised. And even it it were,...
16 New Rules of Business

16 New Rules of Business

Hire outside the box. Time shift your team. Do a bit of everything. Tune out. Be transparent. Enforce a hard stop. Don’t think in annual terms. Splurge on things that are often overlooked. Toss out the projections – your business is you. Embrace a hybrid...
Investing in not-haves

Investing in not-haves

We invest a lot of time, energy and other resources in what we don’t have. Just like how we focus on fixing our weaknesses, instead of magnifying our strengths. Have you noticed how quickly we can list our lacks and weaknesses? We entertain this fantasy that we...
Black and white thinking

Black and white thinking

Black and white thinking is a common thinking pattern we all get caught up in now and then. Black and white thinking happens when our brains quickly polarise a situation, often unconsciously, to a simple black or white, good or bad. It is a survival mechanism we have...
False certainties

False certainties

It is a part of our makeup to avoid discomfort. A lot of us, if not most of us, prefer to cling to the made-up certainty of a belief or an aspirational goal, than to embrace the scary uncertainties of reality. False certainties can seem harmless when taken at face...
Fortress Learning: Learn and Lend

Fortress Learning: Learn and Lend

Like many businesses, Fortress Learning has a referral fee mechanism to reward referrals. The difference is that they provide the option to donate this referral fee to Kiva as part of their corporate giving programme. Owners Chris Gribble and Bryan West made this...

Failure: two views

Here’s my paraphrase of a portion from Oliver Burkeman’s The Antidote where he described two ways of looking at failure: The way we look at failure is dependant on what we believe about our talent and ability. If we see these as fixed or innate to who we are, we...
Breaking through illusions

Breaking through illusions

The biggest (constructive) disruption we can induce today is to break through the cumulative illusions about how we live and work together. Marketing, status quo/conformist beliefs, religious doctrine and unquestioned cultural norms (not to mention politicians!) all...
Australia’s start-up brain drain?

Australia’s start-up brain drain?

Paul Wallbank’s article Tony’s partying like it’s 1979 paints a depressing future for tech startups in Australia. …prominent investor Mark Carnegie said: “The truth of the matter is, Australian venture capital as an industry has been an...
Working with the nature of things

Working with the nature of things

One of the great hallmarks of our success as a species is our desire (and ability) to impose our will on just about every aspect of our environment, including each other. In the design of services and processes for example, we are often tempted to impose detailed...
Industry habits and expectations

Industry habits and expectations

Have you ever waited for a tradesperson who didn’t turn up when they said they would? Or bought a piece of technology that did not work until updates were applied at your own expense/effort? Were batteries included the last time you bought a toy? (Remember Nigel...
Page 2 of 1012345...10...Last »