Pay, Pray, or Play: How to Win at Building Brand Love

What is that indefinable brand quality every company wants to achieve in the minds of their customers? Advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi calls it “loyalty that goes beyond reason,” or, more simply, “love.” This level of devotion may even have physiological implications. In 2011, the BBC program Secrets of Superbrands worked with a team of…

Practicing Mindfulness

A New Way Forward for Board Directors Leading in the Age of Distraction Today, we are experiencing a tidal wave of rapid changes sweeping every industry. Most boards of directors are ill prepared to confront the current and future challenges posed by new technological innovations, such as AI, machine learning, cyber security, robots, digital convergence,…

Learning from Liminality

The Importance of Purpose During Organizational Change Whether it’s the first day of kindergarten, the start of a new job, puberty, or retirement, change – even when it is welcomed – tends to be challenging to cope with. It’s no wonder that organizational change is typically considered a painful experience. While complex constellations of factors…

Acting on Cultural Insights to Sustain Business Growth

Culture is as meaningful as it is meaningless. Without context, culture is merely an environmental observation. Yet, when we diligently look for cues and establish cause and effect, relationships, implications, and hypotheses, we can truly capitalize on cultural awareness. The way we study culture in a business context is important. I have found the anthropologist's…

Paving the Way for Women in Business

We live in an exciting time – a time where individuals have the power to spread ideas and to influence others. And, despite technology having broken down traditional power structures and given voices to individuals, our institutions still lack diversity – especially when it comes to the gender of those who are sharing their thoughts and ideas…

Listen

This article is part of a larger feature called "The Future of Crisis" in The Crisis Issue. Asimple question: What if nations and societies around the world face heightened risk today because people find it increasingly challenging to listen well? For skilled listeners in unfamiliar and potentially threatening environments, the first signs of warning and welcome…

The Future of Financial Institutions Post Brexit

Regulatory changes are not normally the concern of a strategic foresight consultancy, but the possible departure of the United Kingdom from the European Union is a once in a lifetime event. Brexit’s effect on global financial institutions is worth an examination to help inform strategic decisions that may need to be made about the future.…

Users of the World, Unite!

What Marx’s theory of alienation tells us about our relationship with big data. Human beings have become living, breathing, data-making machines. When we wake up in the morning, before our feet even hit the door, we check our email, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. Our quantified selves move through the day, captured and counted by our wearable…

Congratulations, Your Business is Dead

When a game changer enters a market, it can spur incumbents to new heights of innovation and competition. It can be a dramatic story, as new and old firms fight it out for revenue and for customer loyalties. Unfortunately, many incumbents react with panic, denial, and failure to see the obvious. They surrender before the…

In Pursuit of Customer Intimacy and Operational Excellence

In their 1997 book, The Discipline of Market Leaders, Michael Treacy and Fred Wiersema describe three fundamental business strategies: operational excellence, product leadership and customer intimacy. They argue that in strategy formation, focus is critical and therefore companies need to decide which one of these strategic directions to pursue. They can’t do all three. Treacy…

How to Fail Better

Failure is the corporate f-word. It makes people paranoid, particularly when organizations are constantly ‘right sizing’, and their history of failure could earn them a priority boarding pass when it comes to chopping head counts. So what do you need to do if you discover your biggest innovation is about to become a flop? It…