Innovation poses two problems for most leaders, given the way they are trained to think. First, its value diminishes over time; it goes sour, like milk. This year’s “must-have” gadget will end up in a landfill next Christmas or at least be overwritten by version 2.0.

Second, innovation only pays off in a future for which you presently have no data. As Kierkegaard put it “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.” (more…)

St. Augustine the brilliant Bishop of Hippo and Professor of Rhetoric at Milan crafted the Christian Neo- Platonist world view of an unseen and untouched world residing above the earthly one scourged by the infidels and idolaters of the day. His catchphrase credo ut intelligam, “I believe in order that I may understand,” encapsulated this world view throughout the Dark Ages. Ironically, after centuries of aggression and regression secular universities reignited science and empirical inquiry into the workings of nature.  Renaissance Man cleverly turned the phrase on its head to become the rallying cry for progress – intellego ut credam, “I think so that I may believe.” (more…)

The laws of probability, so true in general, so fallacious in particular.” ( Edward Gibbon)

Retired center Wayne Gretzky is still referred to as the Great One because he holds the record for the most goals scored and assisted in the history of the National Hockey League. In the frozen North Country his legacy of splitting defenses with spectacular serpentine maneuvers and the individual and team victories that followed him endures as the watermark of excellence on skates or otherwise. What is often overlooked is that Gretzky also ranks near the top of the list for total shots on goal taken. That is attempts to score that did not result in a goal. Gretzky followed a simple formula – the more shots on goal the greater the probability of scoring. We find this same swing and miss approach in peers from other sports like footballer Pelé or baseball’s Henry Aaron both among the most celebrated athletes of their age. (more…)