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series: Entrepreneurial Spirit
16 June 2011
George E. Pake Auditorium, PARC
The truly "kick-ass" people in our organizations, don’t wait for permission to lead, innovate, or strategize. They do what is right for the firm, regardless of status. They bring a combination of "curiosity and passion" which Thomas Friedman once said "are key components in a world where information is readily available to everyone and global markets reward those people." There's a different set of rules and assumptions by which we'll thrive and succeed in this new, networked society, and it comes down to this: while you can be a rebel or a subversive without being a leader, you can rarely be an effective leader without also having a little bit of rebel in you.
As a strategist and author, Nilofer Merchant has earned a reputation for helping companies win markets and institute a culture of innovation. Having worked with a number of major Fortune 500 corporate brands -- such as Adobe, Autodesk, Apple, HP, Symantec, Nokia -- as well as web 2.0 startups, Merchant knows how to share practical advice that works.
Merchant has been a founder and CEO of a multi-million dollar services company; been VP of a startup earning the initial millions that allowed for a successful exit; ran the P&L for a $200M division (and grew it to a nearly $300M); and has advised many Fortune 500 firms' C-suite in make-or-break situations.
Merchant most recently authored The New How, a book that helps big organizations act "flatter" and be more nimble. She is a regular Harvard Business Review contributor and has written for BusinessWeek, Forbes, and AdAge. Through successes and failures, Nilofer has honed a framework for solving tough problems including MurderBoarding™.
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