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Here be Dragons

June 10, 2011

Our next book is “Here be Dragons”.

The book is for people who agree with the main thesis of Beyond Crisis* which is that the world will not return to the Business as Usual state of the post war global economy. But many of our readers have asked for clearer guidelines to what organisations should do about renewal, and where to start.

We have created a set of diagnostic cards which help inform the “where to start” question. And we decided to focus the first book on the parts of the cycle of renewal that informed the decisions of the company, leaving the introduction of change to a later book. This is because energetic efforts to re-align an organisation in the wrong direction are counter-productive: so the tools to aid decision making should come first.

A consortium of experts has written the guidelines in a clear and accessible format. The members of the consortium are:

Martin Duckworth, SAMI Principal, on horizon scanning;
Patricia Lustig, SAMI Fellow, on organisational insight;
Rob Phaal, Principal Research Associate at the University of Cambridge’s Centre for Technology Management, on roadmapping;
Gill Ringland, SAMI Fellow, on scenario planning
Chris Yapp, SAMI Associate, on innovation.

The style of the book is different from most handbooks that help with management tasks. Once we had written the guidelines, we thought not only “it is not very compelling reading”, but the connection between the guidelines for the methods and tools was not clear.

So we decided to start by taking the story of Marco Anderson, who is asked to develop new businesses over the next ten years for his company, FutureParts Supplies Ltd. It tracks his progress – based on the real life experience and feelings of the authors – of a project to not only understand the technology but also the organisation’s capabilities. The reader is then able to dip into the guidelines, informed by Marco’s story, rather than read the book in total.

The book is due to be published in the autumn but we would be happy to have any reader take a look at Marco’s story while it is in draft pdf form, and would welcome your comments.

To discuss this further, or to request a pdf of the draft of Marco’s story, contact

* Gill Ringland, Oliver Sparrow and Patricia Lustig, Beyond Crisis, John Wiley 2010

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