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The Chemical Spark for a Decade of Innovation

When Kurt Swogger took the position of global director of Dow Chemical’s polyolefin and elastomers operation, it was a struggling unit of the company, one in an industry with little innovation, in which customers were used to either selecting from existing products or waiting six to 24 months for the process that would produce a customized polymer. Rather than accept the status quo, Swogger... CONTINUE READING

The Importance of Failure to Success: The Challenge of Innovation

Innovation is widely considered essential to the strategy of any company. But it so rarely comes from a light bulb going off over someone’s head; it’s hard, and it usually takes a messy process of ideation, exploration and experimentation, and that process means risking and learning from failure. The importance of failure to innovation and the importance of innovation to success might seem... CONTINUE READING

Net Profits: Improving Ticket Sales With Market Research

By Ronald T. Wilcox

In just three years, the Portland Trail Blazers went from sellout games to struggling ticket sales. By 2005, attendance had fallen by more than 15 percent, and more than half of the team’s luxury suites stood empty. Management was confronted with the all-important question: How to lure their fans back and fill the stadium? In the past, they had packaged tickets to multiple games in bundles... CONTINUE READING

Is Profit the Purpose of Business?

You may think that business is all about profit, business people are unethical and business in general is a black art of guile and greed. Over the years I have found this to be mostly untrue. The story that business people are bad and what they do is morally questionable is false. For every Enron, there are 10,000 good companies. And most companies, like most people, are trying to do the right... CONTINUE READING

How to Outthink the Robots: Social and Emotional Intelligence

Exponentially evolving technology threatens to displace a huge portion of the workforce in the not-so-distant future. In anticipation of this massive labor destruction, what can we do to prepare ourselves? Luckily, where non-human employees may be efficient and precise, people are adaptable. So while we risk losing jobs that involve repetition in a stable environment, we can build on our... CONTINUE READING

Economic Revival in the Citizen Potawatomi Nation

Four decades ago, the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, a tribe of the Potawatomi people headquartered in Oklahoma, was faltering. Its dwindling resources included 2.5 acres of trust land and $500 in cash. How could the tribe reverse its decline and build for itself a position not only of security and tribal pride, but one in which its people thrived? When John “Rocky” Barrett became chair of the... CONTINUE READING