I got back to L.A. yesterday from Singapore, flew straight out of that fevered dream of an island nation into a national holiday, and this, my meditation on the man for whom the day is named: Always subvert the status quo. Where there is racism, rectify it.  Where there is violence, pacify it. Where there […]

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Rick Shaughnessy, the head of our brand strategy practice, nails the issue in this letter to the Chicago Sun-Times, about the billboard blight that threatens the landscape along Chicago’s expressways: In summary: Brands who engage in their customers’ narratives are much more effective than brands who try to inflict their own narratives on customers. They […]

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Yesterday, a friend who designs sustainability strategies for large municipal groups passed along this classic text exchange he had a couple of weeks ago with a buddy who was attending a seminar in Los Angeles. The endorsement is clear enough. That’s not the ‘business end’ of the text, though. The business end is explicit in […]

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As natural as change is, there’s no getting around the fact that it can be painful.  Especially when it happens to you and is not authored or initiated by you.  ‘Disruption’ is a word that some managers toss around in a pretty cavalier way as a desirable state  or productive path for businesses and their […]

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Catherine Stephens, a Disney executive, coined this phrase last week in casual conversation when she and I were discussing the studio’s new eco-brand, Disneynature.   I am captivated by the pairing of these words, because it describes perfectly the relationship between what a brand stands for, and what it has the potential to become.  This tension […]

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