20/20 Vision: The Antidote to Willful Blindness
Big mistakes, the failure to spot trends early, difficulty innovating: even the smartest companies miss things. But why? Your workforce should be the greatest information-gathering network—so why does it so often happen that all those smart people miss things? How can teams and companies be run to maximize the information, knowledge and insight all those people carry in their heads? What are the impediments to insight—and how can we do better?
One Company: The Art and Science of Building Collaborative Cultures
After years of making companies more efficient, the most pressing question now is: how do I get all of this talent, experience and knowhow to collaborate? We know that innovation demands the collision of disciplines and knowledge—but how can that happen when most information is trapped in silos and fiefdoms? What are the mechanisms that keep potential trapped—and what can companies do to liberate it? Although most work is done in teams, many team members don’t know why or how to extract value from their collaboration. What are the trends and changes around the world that mark a new model for leadership and collaboration?
A Bigger Prize: A New Measure of Competition and Collaboration
Margaret Heffernan suggests that existing business models for competition have unintended consequences. They often keep the best from rising to the top, crushing creativity, disengaging us from responsibility, undermining trust, and enhancing waste. In A Bigger Prize, her eye-opening book on competition, she offers a new construct for creative collaboration and innovation. Based on conversations with scientists, musicians, athletes, entrepreneurs and executives, Margaret demonstrates a new ethos of cooperation within and outside organizations. It is a process grounded in generosity and the future, and it is a process that leads to measurably better bottom line results for your business and HR practices. It is also the focus of her conversation with us at the retreat. Margaret suggests that this new way of looking at competition and collaboration will be some of the hardest work we do, but that it is indeed work that will help us share a bigger prize.
Does Competition Work?
Solo cyclists can peddle fast - but if you get them to race against one another, they race faster. That early research finding has permeated management, instilling the belief that a competitive culture will build excellence. But what's the evidence that it works? What are the unforeseen consequences? And why are some of the most creative and productive companies in the world doing all they can to eradicate internal contests? When does competition work for you—and when might it prove corrosive?
What is Diversity For, and What Does It Mean?
Diversity and inclusion have been management buzz words for decades. So why has progress proved so slow? Many companies have made great progress in improving numbers around diversity but have found little has changed. Was diversity just a fad, or is there a second chapter? What are the relevant reasons to pursue a diversity agenda and what is the nature, challenge and importance of inclusion?
Dr. Margaret Heffernan produced programmes for the BBC for 13 years. She then moved to the US where she spearheaded multimedia productions for Intuit, The Learning Company, and Standard&Poors. She was Chief Executive of InfoMation Corporation, ZineZone Corporation, and then iCast Corporation; was named one of the “Top 25” by Streaming Media magazine and one of the “Top 100 Media Executives” by The Hollywood Reporter.
The author of six books, Margaret’s third book, Willful Blindness : Why We Ignore the Obvious at our Peril was named one of the most important business books of the decade by the Financial Times. In 2015, she was awarded the Transmission Prize for A Bigger Prize: How We Can Do Better than the Competition, described as “meticulously researched…engagingly written…universally relevant and hard to fault.” Her TED talks have been seen by over twelve million people, and in 2015 TED published Beyond Measure: The Big Impact of Small Changes. Her most recent book, Uncharted: How to map the future, was published in 2020. It quickly became a bestseller and was nominated for the Financial Times Best Business Book award. She is a Professor of Practice at the University of Bath, Lead Faculty for the Forward Institute’s Responsible Leadership Programme, and, through Merryck & Co., mentors CEOs and senior executives of major global organizations. She chairs the boards of DACS and FilmBath and is a Trustee of the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution.