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Martin Reeves on The Imagination Machine

The Chain

Jun 29 2021 • 38 mins

Business life-cycles continue to get ever shorter - outperformance quickly fades to the mean. In the 1990s only 10% of top quartile corporate performers were average performers 5 years later, whereas today 90% of outperformance has decayed within 5 years. There is a consistent imperative to reinvent your organisation, to continually have the hunger to do things differently - entrepreneurially. Entrepreneurship is often scrappy and chaotic, which is anathema to highly structured organisational behemoths - so there is an inevitable tension between the internal culture and the external context (which is closer to scrappy and chaotic, with events and issues such as the pandemic, climate change, inequality disrupting carefully laid plans).

Imagination is both the root of and the route to new solutions - but as the authors note, those solutions almost inevitably bring the next set of challenges too. First though we need to reorganise the organisation to harness our human ability to enable higher-level cognition.

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