Archive | failure

Stop Glorifying Cheerful Superheroes And Value Quiet Safeguarders

Businesses should stop glorifying cheerful superheroes and emphasize the quiet safeguarder. Cheerful superhero is my term for those people who sweep in to fix a problem after it’s occurred, often with a loud noise and a smile on their face. They don’t complain about cleaning up other peoples’ messes, partly because they thrive on restoring…

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Post-traumatic growth

The theory of post-traumatic growth (PTG) suggests people who go through psychological trauma can have positive growth as a result. Developed by psychologists in the mid 1990’s, PTG is a process by which people develop new understandings of themselves and the world they live in, making it easier for them to face the future and…

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Exploring the Adjacent Possible

We sensationalize innovation as moments of eureka leading to novel ideas but most innovation comes from exploring the adjacent possible. The concept of the adjacent possible originates from Stuart Kauffman’ work on biological evolution. Kauffman’s theory is biological systems morph into more complex systems by taking small, incremental steps rather than extreme jumps or more…

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Prepare Three Envelopes Is Bad Advice

There’s a classic story called ‘prepare three envelopes’ which provides advice on leadership transitions. There are versions which apply to business, government, and sports teams but they essentially all have the same advice. Here’s a version: A new executive is hired to take over a struggling business unit. During the handover meeting, the previous executive…

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