December 28, 2008 12:43 PM Filed under: Work
Woke this morning to an interview with John Kao on the BBC. Kao, author of Innovation Nation, is one of those acknowledged experts. His expertise: innovation.
He illustrates innovation by improvising on a piano. He plays the standard transcribed melody to an old standard and relates this to business process. The result sounds wooden and lifeless. Then he improvises around the transcription and the result is transforming.
He plays a random series of notes, explaining that while this 'melody' might well be creative, it's not satisfying. Satisfaction... in both innovation and music ... requires respect for a few basic rules of construction, principles of harmony, rhythm, and tone. The manager's job involves letting go, removing barriers, and helping people believe in the objective.
December 12, 2008 11:23 AM Filed under: Life
I'm no better at predicting the future than the next guy. Probably much worse than some. Marginally better than some others. But I don't believe that life depends upon anyone's ability to accurately predict the future. We humans remain interested in prediction even though it's kind of an anti-life occupation.
There's probably no better way to undermine the present than to stick your head far into the future. Time spent focusing upon there is necessarily time spent not being present here. We live only in the present. Slip over here for more ...
December 07, 2008 12:24 PM Filed under: Work
I've been reading a fascinating new book, The Science of Fear - Why We Fear the Things We Shouldn't—and Put Ourselves in Greater Danger by Daniel Gardner (Dutton, NY 2008). Gardner cites a study concluding that as a result of grounding airplanes following the 9/11 tragedy, fifteen hundred and ninety five additional people died in automobile accidents that otherwise wouldn't have been killed because airplane travel is much safer than automobile travel, even when the risk of hijacking is factored in. Doesn't hardly seem reasonable, does it? Slip over here for more ...