CHAPTER 5

Stage Four: Strategy

Bolting Down to Infinity

Life in the Third Dimension

Comedians Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner created a comic routine in 1961 called the “2000 year old man.” In one skit, Reiner asks Mel Brooks, born in the BC era and living today, if he always prayed to the Almighty. Brooks said that was not always the case. In the early days, they used to pray to a guy named Phil. Then one day the sky opened up and a lightning bolt struck and killed Phil. At that point, Brooks recalls, we knew that “there’s somebody bigger than Phil.”1

Every organization has its own Phil moment. Consider the economic events in 2008: some businesses did not survive. Such situations demonstrate how forces outside the organization’s control have acatastrophic ...

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