What If It’s Not about the Logo?

Please dont fall in love with what youve constructed. Its like in the Marinesdont fall in love with your plan, because the plans always going to change. And you need to make sure that the audience is the most important person in the room. Because if you want to make something that is memorable for somebody else, as well as for yourselfthe purpose of playing, of doing live music, is that its like a communal witnessing of something.

Yo-Yo Ma1

I. Raising the Curtain

Maintaining the status quo in our organizations and our businesses is increasingly more difficult to preserve, even when we are successful. The global pressures to stay relevant push most of us to innovate or risk eventually disappearing. Consequently, it makes sense that we work hard to pursue personal and collective breakthroughs because they allow us to grow, despite the perils of discovery work, the creative part of our work. Yet we can get caught in a closed, self-referential loop. Like Sisyphus, we push for innovation so that we can grow to self-preserve, so we can innovate, to grow, so we can self-preserve, and the cycle continues. This loop prevents us from making sure we circulate our ideas, that our work stays open to improvement, and that we consider its deeper, more human implications. Growing suggests that we stop and ask why we are doing what we do. What’s the deeper dimension of our work, and why do our organizations ultimately exist, beyond self-preservation? ...

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