ABOUT THE BOOK
Businesses need a new type of problem solving. Why? Because they are getting people wrong
Traditional problem-solving methods taught in business schools serve us well for some of the everyday challenges of business, but they tend to be ineffective with problems involving a high degree of uncertainty. Why? Because, more often than not, these tools are based on a flawed model of human behavior. And that flawed model is the invisible scaffolding that supports our surveys, our focus groups, our R&D, and much of our long-term strategic planning.
In The Moment of Clarity, Christian Madsbjerg and Mikkel Rasmussen examine the business world’s assumptions about human behavior and show how these assumptions can lead businesses off track. But the authors chart a way forward. Using theories and tools from the human sciences—anthropology, sociology, philosophy, and psychology—The Moment of Clarity introduces a practical framework called sensemaking. Sensemaking’s nonlinear problem-solving approach gives executives a better way to understand business challenges involving shifts in human behavior.
“The human sciences address the reality of people’s lives at their most complex and, quite frankly most interesting. Once you start truly understanding people’s behaviour, you will begin to see your business landscape with new clarity.”
This new methodology, a fundamentally different way to think about strategy, is already taking off inFortune 100 companies around the world. Through compelling case studies and their direct experience with LEGO, Samsung, Adidas, Coloplast, and Intel, Madsbjerg and Rasmussen will show you how to solve problems as diverse as setting company direction, driving growth, improving sales models, understanding the real culture of your organization, and finding your way in new markets.
Over and over again, executives say the same thing after engaging in a process of sensemaking: “Now I see it . . .” This experience—the moment of clarity—has the potential to drive the entire strategic future of your company. Isn’t it time you and your firm started getting people right?
Successful companies work to understand the emotional, even visceral context in which people encounter their product or service–they are able to use what’s called Thick Data.
Red Associates co-founder Christian Madsbjerg on using the human sciences to solve business problems.
LEGO turned itself around by analyzing overbearing parents
“The great thing about Red is that they’re supersmart,” says Mike Milley, the director of Samsung’s lifestyle research lab. “They are an unparalleled deliverer of that well-framed idea that’s going to help tell the story of what we need to do.”
“I’ve seen Red in meetings with hard-core board members who’ve dealt w the Big Three consul firms their whole lives who are just blown away .”
Most people in business associate the human sciences—anthropology, sociology, political science, and philosophy—with academia, and for good reason. The work of scholars in these fields is notoriously difficult to understand, and the insights they offer often seem to have little practical relevance in business.
But that is changing rapidly. An emerging method is dramatically shaping how businesses can apply the human sciences. This new approach is finding its way into the labs of technology companies such as Intel, IBM, and Samsung; the marketing departments of large consumer-product companies such as Adidas, Lego, and Procter & Gamble; global health care companies such as Novo Nordisk and Pfizer; and the thinking and writing of business leaders and new breeds of consultancy that, like our own, merge hard and soft sciences.