Listening to History vs. Histrionics

Oral histories—extended interviews that capture the “you are there” feel of an executive’s career —enrich an organization’s bank of heritage assets to be leveraged in support of corporate transformation, change management, and a host of other goals. Capturing foundational stories that exemplify corporate values and “hero” stories, including lessons learned from setbacks, before they are…

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BP: Beyond Core Values

When BP’s “Beyond Petroleum” image campaign was running full throttle a few years ago, I remember cornering a company lawyer. What was wrong with being a petroleum company, and being the best one they could be? He shrugged. Oil was so 20th century; the company’s C-suite was focused on a future increasingly powered by alternative…

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BP: Beyond Core Values

When BP’s “Beyond Petroleum” image campaign was running full throttle a few years ago, I remember cornering a company lawyer. What was wrong with being a petroleum company, and being the best one they could be? He shrugged. Oil was so 20th century; the company’s C-suite was focused on a future increasingly powered by alternative…

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Dead Livelihoods

I’m smitten with imagery lately. Perhaps it’s our work on Adobe Photoshop’s 20th anniversary, but these days I’m hitting the Google image search like an all-you-can-eat buffet, and find myself clicking on those image-centric links I might ordinarily ignore. If it’s true a picture says a thousand words, and our ADD culture is increasingly moving…

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Square Deal to Done Deal: Leveraging History to Change the Future

President Obama reached back nearly 100 years in our nation’s history—to Teddy Roosevelt’s Square Deal from the 1912 presidential campaign—to demonstrate how long American political agendas (both Republican and Democrat) have listed expanding health care coverage as a key reform. The push to pass healthcare reform was a hard slog, but the President prevailed, using…

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