The Road Ahead: The Design of Incentives to Unlock Real Value

It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.SINCLAIR LEWIS

DONELLA MEADOWS wrote the book on systems thinking, literally. In Thinking in Systems: A Primer, she says that a system is “a set of things—people, cells, molecules, or whatever—interconnected in such a way that they produce their own pattern of behavior over time.”1 She lays out the leverage points for systems change, from least important to most important. The key takeaway from her work is that the greatest leverage exists in the design of the system, the setting of intentions—influencing the mindset.*

In business, the ways we educate, orient, and ...

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