Category Archives: Decision making

August 31, 2017

Upcoming Webinar: Drive Organizational Change with a Powerful Narrative

If you are already know you’re interested in taking the Webinar, Using Strategic Narratives to Accelerate Organizational Change on September 12th from 1 – 2 PM EDT, you can accelerate right now and sign up at the Association for Strategic Planning HERE.  Don’t forget your 25% Discount for being a reader of this blog — use the code …

April 4, 2017

Complexity, Explained: A Review of Overcomplicated, Technology at the Limits of Comprehension

If you haven’t yet read Samuel Arbesman’s Overcomplicated: Technology at the Limits of Comprehension (Random House, 2016) I hope you will soon. This improbably short book does three things magnificently well: It explains the befuddling fact that we now live with technological systems so complex that even the engineers who built them do not necessarily understand their …

March 28, 2017

How to Successfully Predict the Future … and Still Fail to Impact it

If you successfully identify the future consequences of contemporary actions, and no one acts on your prediction, does it matter? A senior manager developing an internal strategic foresight program recently asked me to identify some cases in which people ascertained the future outcomes of actions in the present. He wanted to know what methods they …

May 4, 2016

If You Want to Generate Strategies for Future Success, Start with Narratives and Metaphors

Terms like metaphor, myth, story  and narrative are not necessarily the first that come to mind when considering how to develop a future-facing national strategy.  But they should be.  This point was made in brilliant ways by the participants at the Atlantic Council’s second annual Global Strategy Forum in Washington DC earlier this week. Metaphors …

April 19, 2016

Creating an Innovative Workforce in a Large Bureaucracy: Lessons from the U.S. Air Force

Strategic Narratives for innovation

The idea that bureaucracy inhibits innovation is far from new: Political scientists in the early 1960s were already making the charge that, “There is a growing feeling that modern organizations and particularly the large, bureaucratic business and government organizations, need to increase their capacity to innovate” (Victor Thompson, Administrative Science Quarterly, June 1965). Fifty years …

April 30, 2013

Let’s Celebrate the 2nd Anniversary of “A National Strategic Narrative”

National Strategic Narrative

This has been a tough spring for national cohesion in the United States. Automatic federal spending cuts called sequestration kicked in after Congress failed to agree on how to manage the federal budget. The Senate voted down a bill that would expand background checks for gun purchasers, despite strong support around the country.  And bombings …

April 24, 2013

Post-Boston: Keep Calm and Think Clearly (Part 1)

Boston Marathon

Reprinted from The Globalist, April 23, 2013 The Boston Marathon bombings provide an opportunity for the United States to consider how to combat extremist ideas more effectively than it did a decade ago. But this is not the time to let fear and uncertainty drive us into misguided and — as importantly — ineffective forms …