Tag Archives: strategy

Eight Ideas for 21st-Century Risk Managers

UPDATE (April, 2011): The full article (“Gifts of Sight“) is now online at Risk Professional magazine.  It is behind a pay wall, but email me and I’ll send you a personal copy. I was recently asked to explain some of the concepts I use in my research to a journalist interested in new developments in […]

An Interview with GBN

I recently did a Q & A for the Fall 2010 issue of the GBN Bulletin (pdf here). Here is an extract from the PDF, in which I talk about crowdsourced scenarios, urban change, design & strategy. I’ve added links and re-inserted a few of references and shout-outs that didn’t make it into the final edit, […]

On learning, collapse and the reduction of complexity

“…in its beginning it is easy to cure, but hard to recognize; whereas, after a time, not having been detected and treated at the first, it becomes easy to recognize but impossible to cure.” – Niccolo Machievelli In response to a Twitter conversation with Dave Snowden and Andrew Curry, regarding the need / possibility of […]

What next for scenario planning?

How are online tools and social media transforming the practice of scenario planning? Recently I have been interviewing a variety of high profile futurists and  up-and-coming strategists on how online approaches are transforming scenario planning and futures work. Although the questions have been largely open ended, conducted in person, over the phone and by email, […]

Resilient, durable, or agile? Which metaphor for the future?

Much talk is made about resiliency as a social strategy in the face of uncertainty.  But is this the right metaphor for the 21st century? Resilient Resiliency is an often used term in climate, ecology and social sciences, taken to denote a sense of flexibility or endurance.  The dictionary defines resilience as the ability “to recoil or spring […]

Strategy without tactics, tactics without strategy

A few people have been hitting this blog recently from the Google search “learning how to go from tactics to strategy“. This reminds me of my favourite Sun Tzu quote, which has come up in a few conversations recently and our anonymous Google friends may find of some use: Strategy without tactics is the slowest […]

The coming boom and bust of design thinking

There is tremendous excitement right now about “design thinking” (see Helen Walters’ review of the best design thinking books of 2009, for example).  Battered by economic failure, public uncertainty and the failure of traditional forms of leadership and management, many are gazing hopefully towards design thinking as a new management wonderdrug that will help them […]

Learning from children: strategy, tactics and games in times of rapid change

Are there lessons from how children learn that might help us adults, and the organisations we run, learn from turbulent environments and how to make better decisions in times of change? I have a 13 month old boy (pictured above, around 9 months old) and,  like all children, he is constantly learning and experimenting.  As […]

On design and the use of abductive reasoning

Lately the notion of “abductive reasoning” has been cropping up in a few conversations I’ve seen around knowledge management and governance.  Credit seems to go to Dave Snowden for introducing the idea to the KM community (in this post).  A lot of subsequent credit has since been given to people like Tim Brown (IDEO) for […]

Why the use of best practice can be dangerous and misleading

Best practices are a ridiculous way of learning about the world because their rote application is similar to sympathetic magic.  It’s like building a model of something, building a doll that has a likeness of something else, and hoping that the effects will transfer. Reproducing similar types of interventions in a different contexts is dangerous […]