Tim Leberecht
THE BUSINESS ROMANTIC
Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
“The flame must never go out”
The Great Disenchantment
The Great Disenchantment
5
6
The Great
Disenchantment
Wellbeing Happiness
PurposeMeaning
New
metrics
“Even if we do learn more about the fate of the airliner, it’s unlikely that all of our
questions will ever be answered. A...
10
Market society in confusion
Quantified selves
Subjectivity
Suffering
Mystery
Un-reason
Transcendence
Ephemerality Serendipity/
unpredictability
Romance
Un-fulfillment/
...
“To romanticize the world is to make us aware of the magic, mystery,
and wonder of the world; it is to educate the senses ...
Reporting to the CEO, the Business Romantic will help colleagues, customers, partners, and society at large see the
beauty...
Specific responsibilities will include but are not limited to:
• Carving out spaces for the artful and playful at work
• E...
Qualifications:
• 5–10 years of experience in romanticizing business, ideally in various industries
• Ability to instantly...
Rules of Enchantment
Find the Big in the Small
Be a Stranger
Give More Than You Take
Suffer (A Little)
Fake It!
Keep the M...
Rules of Enchantment
Find the Big in the Small
Be a Stranger
Give More Than You Take
Suffer (A Little)
Fake It!
Keep the M...
Suffer (a Little)
“But I don’t want comfort. I want God, I want poetry, I want real danger,
I want freedom, I want goodnes...
20
25
26
“A smile is a door half-open and half-closed.”
Jennifer Egan
Keep the Mystique
Take the Long Way Home
“It’s a twinge in your heart far more powerful than memory alone. This device isn’t a
spaceship, it...
44
Traditional Smart Romantic
Planning Acting Wandering
Conversion Connection Reconnection
Process Dashboard Principles
Contr...
Traditional Smart Romantic
Planning Acting Wandering
Conversion Connection Reconnection (Nostalgia)
Process Dashboard Prin...
52
“Market systems are justified not because of efficiencies
and profits, but because humans are first and foremost social
an...
54
“To begin, begin.”
William Wordsworth
Thank you. @timleberecht
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
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The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself

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Based on the upcoming book THE BUSINESS ROMANTIC (HarperCollins), this talk argues that we underestimate the importance of romance in our lives and that we can find it in and through business—by designing products, services, and experiences that connect us with something greater than ourselves.

Against the backdrop of eroding trust in capitalism, pervasive technology, big data, and the desire to quantify all of our behaviors, THE BUSINESS ROMANTIC makes a compelling case that we must meld the pursuit of success and achievement with romance if we want to create an economy that serves our entire selves.

THE BUSINESS ROMANTIC not only provides surprising insights into the emotional and social aspects of business but also presents “Rules of Enchantment” that will help both individuals and organizations construct more meaningful experiences for themselves and others.

Published in: Business

The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself

  1. 1. Tim Leberecht THE BUSINESS ROMANTIC Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
  2. 2. “The flame must never go out”
  3. 3. The Great Disenchantment
  4. 4. The Great Disenchantment
  5. 5. 5
  6. 6. 6 The Great Disenchantment
  7. 7. Wellbeing Happiness PurposeMeaning New metrics
  8. 8. “Even if we do learn more about the fate of the airliner, it’s unlikely that all of our questions will ever be answered. And the memory of how much we didn’t know—and how long we didn’t know it—ought to sober us as we prepare for the next sudden visitation of the inexplicable.” . Pico Iyer -“The Folly of Thinking We Know. The Painful Hunt for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370,” New York Times, March 20, 2014
  9. 9. 10 Market society in confusion Quantified selves
  10. 10. Subjectivity Suffering Mystery Un-reason Transcendence Ephemerality Serendipity/ unpredictability Romance Un-fulfillment/ ”infinite longing” Inconsistency
  11. 11. “To romanticize the world is to make us aware of the magic, mystery, and wonder of the world; it is to educate the senses to see the ordinary as extraordinary, the familiar as strange, the mundane as sacred, the finite as infinite.” Novalis
  12. 12. Reporting to the CEO, the Business Romantic will help colleagues, customers, partners, and society at large see the beauty of the business world with fresh eyes. Embracing hope as a strategy, the Business Romantic presents cohesive narratives that make sense of ever more complex and fragmented workplace and market conversations. Instead of focusing on assets and return-on-investment, the Business Romantic exposes the hidden treasures of business and delivers return-on-community. The Business Romantic develops, designs, and implements “acts of significance” that restore nostalgic trust in business as the most impactful human enterprise and provide internal and external audiences with brand and workplace experiences rich with meaning, delight, and fun. We’re looking for a self-starter with strong entrepreneurial drive, exquisite taste, and a proven track record of managing the immeasurable. If you match this profile or are romantic in ways we could not imagine, we look forward to hearing from you. Seeking Business Romantic to Join Our Team
  13. 13. Specific responsibilities will include but are not limited to: • Carving out spaces for the artful and playful at work • Elevating day-to-day interactions and transactions to experiences “greater than ourselves” • Finding meaning in the seemingly mundane • Shifting organizational and brand cultures from utilitarian/transactional to generous/transcendent • Creating zones of discomfort and “critical events” that replace convenience with friction • Doing things for no reason and taking part in joyous, aimless activities such as mystery meetings or result-free conversations • Conceiving of and implementing passion projects • Going on regular hikes with the CFO • Providing leadership to other romantics at the workplace
  14. 14. Qualifications: • 5–10 years of experience in romanticizing business, ideally in various industries • Ability to instantly fall in love with ideas, memes, and projects • Ability to balance Big Data with Big Intuition • Comfortable with high levels of ambiguity and unpredictability • Comfortable with giving chance a chance • Excels at empathy and generosity • Vivid imagination and appreciation for beauty • Ability to enable and cultivate deep connections • Risk taker and adventurer • Ability to understand routine activities as acts of love • Ability to have secrets and keep them • Exceptional devotion to the unknown • Favors authenticity over truth • Appreciation for romantic comedies • Extensive knowledge of English and German romantic literature, experience in writing poems a plus
  15. 15. Rules of Enchantment Find the Big in the Small Be a Stranger Give More Than You Take Suffer (A Little) Fake It! Keep the Mystique Break Up Sail the Ocean Take the Long Way Home Stand Alone, Stand By, Stand Still
  16. 16. Rules of Enchantment Find the Big in the Small Be a Stranger Give More Than You Take Suffer (A Little) Fake It! Keep the Mystique Break Up Sail the Ocean Take the Long Way Home Stand Alone, Stand By, Stand Still
  17. 17. Suffer (a Little) “But I don’t want comfort. I want God, I want poetry, I want real danger, I want freedom, I want goodness. I want sin.” Aldous Huxley, Brave New World
  18. 18. 20
  19. 19. 25
  20. 20. 26
  21. 21. “A smile is a door half-open and half-closed.” Jennifer Egan Keep the Mystique
  22. 22. Take the Long Way Home “It’s a twinge in your heart far more powerful than memory alone. This device isn’t a spaceship, it’s a time machine. It goes backwards, and forwards … it takes us to a place where we ache to go again, a place where we know we are loved.” Don Draper, Mad Men
  23. 23. 44
  24. 24. Traditional Smart Romantic Planning Acting Wandering Conversion Connection Reconnection Process Dashboard Principles Control Monitoring Letting go Consistency Diversity Serendipity Big Idea Big Data Big Intuition Rapid response Real-time Pre-emptive Segmenting Behavioral targeting Distributed presence Message Conversation (Occasional) silence Visibility Transparency Mystery Risk Calculated risk Vulnerability Benefit Value Values Attraction Liking Love Convenience User-friendliness Frustration Efficiency Excellence Significance Self-interest Quantified Self Un-Quantified Self
  25. 25. Traditional Smart Romantic Planning Acting Wandering Conversion Connection Reconnection (Nostalgia) Process Dashboard Principles Control Monitoring Loss of control Consistency Diversity Serendipity Big Idea Big Data Big Intuition Rapid response Real-time Pre-emptive Segmenting Behavioral targeting Distributed presence Message Conversation (Occasional) silence Visibility Transparency Mystery Risk Calculated risk Vulnerability Benefit Value Values Attraction Liking Love Convenience User-friendliness Suffering (a little) Efficiency Excellence Significance Self-interest Quantified Self Un-Quantified Self
  26. 26. 52
  27. 27. “Market systems are justified not because of efficiencies and profits, but because humans are first and foremost social and emotional beings, and markets provide a sympathetic community for social exchange.” Robert C. Solomon
  28. 28. 54 “To begin, begin.” William Wordsworth
  29. 29. Thank you. @timleberecht

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