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  • Richard Marrs is the founder and president of Altamont Consulting Group LLC. Headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area, the group works with organizations, senior executives and their teams creating and executing Strategy, Strategic Alliances, Corporate Development, and Innovation. " Altamont is dedicated to improving our client's productivity, innovation, and performance by helping them Collaborate. Innovate. Transform."

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December 23, 2008


Michael Chender

This is a vivid evocation of some of the challenge of working with the unknown. It is always with us, in fact, but we go through periods where things seem to operate relatively predictably, and we are lulled into thinking that they will always continue that way. Then we have a rude awakening from a phase transition, which makes us aware of a much bigger field of play than we care to consider. The same dynamic occurs in our personal lives as in business, and each can give us valuable clues and training for working with the other. We do need to train our minds, as our well-developed and culturally supported habitual impulses are to ignore what is inconvenient to consider. So the background to successfully using scenario planning and dialogue, and making the diversity of an organization a powerful strength is a deep commitment on the part of leaders to an openness and bravery to go into some personally and organizationally difficult investigations and actions. Unless you are incredibly lucky, that is what always lies on the path between where we are and the innovation and creativity that opens up new possibilities of where we could be. Without the right attitude, I would suggest that all the methodologies may yield a few benefits, but will be largely a waste of time, because there won’t be the oxygen to give new thinking life.

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  • con·tex·ture
    (kən-tĕks'chər, kŏn'tĕks'-) noun: 1. The act of weaving or assembling parts into a whole. 2. An arrangement of interconnected parts; a structure. 3. A distinctive, complex underlying pattern or structure.

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