RESOURCES

The Path of Genius

Leadership

The tease line on the back of Walter Isaacson’s biography of Leonardo da Vinci reads, “He was history’s most creative genius. What secrets can he teach us?” Isaacson applies the same rigorous research to Leonardo’s life that he has to other historic innovators like Benjamin Franklin, Albert Einstein, and Steve Jobs. When he concludes that Leonardo was one of the few in history to rightfully earn the title of genius, there is little for the reader to dispute as we learn he was so much more just than the creator of the Mona Lisa.

 

However, Isaacson’s goal is not to…

Read more.

What Rules Your Culture?

Organizational Transformation

Treating adults like adults doesn’t sound particularly revolutionary. Yet, the companies most often cited for innovative management approaches are basically doing exactly that. Netflix takes their turn in the spotlight in No Rules Rules written by founder and CEO Reed Hastings and business professor Erin Meyers. The company’s desire to limit or eliminate policies and processes that restrict individual decisions, rather than promote innovation, motivated their leadership to do away with strict guidelines on items like vacation time and business travel expenses. Hastings learned from his previous startup experience that scaling produces greater controls, resulting in less innovation. He…

Read more.

Finding Success on the Road to Victory

Leadership

While every child wants to be on a championship team (a desire shared by their parents), the nature of sports doesn’t make that possible. Most sporting contests possess a zero-sum design that creates a winner and a loser. While the creation of winners and losers can seem like a flawed design to a parent trying to comfort a distraught child that missed the potentially winning shot, it also provides some of sports’ greatest lessons.

 

In my own childhood, I felt the confidence building and joy of being on teams that won every game and the disappointment of finishing the season…

Read more.

Leveraging the Limitations of Time

Leadership

Time management can generally be divided into to two broad topics; answering the big picture questions about life to address effectiveness (“are we doing the right thing?”) and exploring productivity or efficiency (“are we doing things right?”). Both are obviously important though the productivity concern may feel like the more pressing need for many. The burden of getting more done with our limited resource capacity confronts us as we start every working day and equally applies to our personal lives.

 

Oliver Burkeman in Four Thousand Weeks attempts to answer the productivity question by applying a big picture philosophy. He provides…

Read more.

Betting on the Future

Strategy

Daniel Burrus’ Flash Foresight, offer the unusual promise on the cover of helping the reader to “see the invisible and do the impossible.” Sounds less like a business best-seller and more like a magician’s spell book.

 

As a futurist, Burrus has an impressive track record of predicting developments in the technology field since the 1980’s. However, his methodology for seeing the invisible turns out to be his ability to see the hard trends and to anticipate the soft trends. Burrus defines a hard trend as “a projection based on measurable, tangible, fully predictable facts, events, or objects.” The central point…

Read more.