Blog

We’re an inquisitive bunch, fascinated by new discoveries and ideas. We regularly conduct research for ourselves and our clients. Follow us to keep up to date.

The need for joined-up thinking in the heart of the brain belt

A million homes in 30 years. That’s the target the government has set to build in the prosperous ‘brain belt’ from Oxford via Milton Keynes to Cambridge. Take this as a microcosm of UK wide plans for development and imagine the infrastructure required. Then zoom out again on your mental Google map to see it in planetary terms. The need for secure affordable homes and the opportunity to live, work and thrive, for our families to flourish. Basic human needs. Bottom of Maslow’s Hierarchy ...

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Conditioning

If you had just one hour with a group of young people what would you teach them? …asked a post on LinkedIn recently. What made it interesting for me was the thought that, when I worked as a Supply Teacher, there were many times when I had exactly that! Just an hour (usually only 50mins!) with a classful of young people; just that short segment on the clock to try and impart some knowledge, do some good, interrupt the conditioning – theirs and the system’s – ...

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Many in body, one in mind

Have you ever been on a march or a rally? It can be quite an intoxicating feeling, walking side by side hundreds if not thousands of others. All of you heading in the same direction with a common intention – it might be highlight climate change, in support of the #MeToo movement, or for many other social or political causes. It is perhaps one of the few times we find ourselves united around a common purpose. There is a Japanese phrase, used in Buddhism, itai doshin, which means “many ...

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Taking emotional regulation in leadership and organisational change seriously – time for mindfulness to step up

There’s lots being said about mindfulness in the workplace: there’s good evidence that personal mindfulness meditation practice reduces stress and improves wellbeing. There’s a clear instant appeal for leaders as it’s an obvious truism that resilience improves a leader’s effectiveness. But we think a significant opportunity is often missed regarding mindfulness at a group, rather than just an individual level. Those who’ve engaged in mindfulness practice find that the REAL ...

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Why ‘Adaptive’ Organisation Design?

Designing organisations to deliver their purpose and strategy is one of the trickiest challenges that managers face. Why? Because typically we’re encouraged to take a ‘technical’ approach to an ‘adaptive’ problem. Let me explain… On the one hand there is a rational linear sequence to organisation design – start with your purpose and strategy, determine your business model, and from that your operating model and organisational structure should flow. We use this sequence ...

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More innovation could be as easy as 1-2-3

“How can we be more innovative?” is a question many clients ask us. It's not one that’s simple to answer, not least because it addresses so many more questions than “how do we have new ideas?” (questions around such topics as decision-making, risk appetite, performance management, interpersonal dynamics, organisational brand/identity, culture and many more besides). Even at the level of idea generation, “being more innovative” is tough when it is already explicitly or tacitly ...

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A blog from our new Strategic Partner: Mark Leonard

By way of a blog, we’d like to introduce to you a new Talik Strategic Partner: Mark Leonard. Mark’s into bringing together social process, somatic awareness and the cognitive principles of mindfulness meditation to organisational culture. We’re excited to have him on board Find out more about him and his background here Check out Mark’s fascinating take on the role mindfulness could ...

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Sustainability As Usual

How is sustainability framed in organisations? How do alternative framings enable or inhibit action on sustainability challenges? It seems the research we carried out five years ago at Ashridge is as relevant, if not more so, today. The questions we pose still fresh. Of the 24 organisations we spoke to, from Unilever and M&S, to Natural England and Sainsbury, the majority are ...

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Under the Surface

Three quarters of an hour into a coaching session today, my “coachee” – in the midst of some deep, appreciative, soul-searching – suddenly lifted his head and laughed, “I thought this was supposed to be Presentation coaching!” You’re right. I responded. It is. I think clients are often surprised at the way I ask them to think, or to question themselves. What does their new hobby or their favourite subject at school have to do with “being a better presenter”? It’s ...

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The Hidden Agenda

It’s remarkable how often you’ll hear people say “We need to communicate better” or “It’s a communication issue” as if saying that alone will fix the multitudinous ills that plague them. Of course it’s a communication issue, the sad truth is, it’s ALWAYS a communication issue. Somehow, somewhere, someone isn’t communicating clearly and the butterfly effect amplifies that tiny wingbeat into the full-scale hurricane descending on some hapless soul elsewhere! Ok, I’m ...

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