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Orbiting The Giant Hairball
Orbiting The Giant Hairball
Orbiting The Giant Hairball
Orbiting The Giant Hairball
Orbiting The Giant Hairball
Orbiting The Giant Hairball
Orbiting The Giant Hairball
Orbiting The Giant Hairball
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Orbiting The Giant Hairball


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Business Book Club Handouts for Orbiting the Giant Hairball by Gordon MacKenzie. …

Business Book Club Handouts for Orbiting the Giant Hairball by Gordon MacKenzie.

Presented by The Meyvn Group
July 21, 2009

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  • 1. Orbiting the Giant Hairball A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace July 21, 2009
  • 2. About Gordon MacKenzie Many people might have considered the late Gordon MacKenzie a renaissance man. He was a metal sculptor, management consultant, keynote speaker, author, artist and poet. In the 1950’s MacKenzie flunked out of the University of British Columbia before landing a job as a cartoonist and writer for the Vancouver Sun. MacKenzie joined Hallmark in 1961 and worked there exactly 30 years – to the day.   Orbiting the Giant Hairball follows MacKenzie’s career at Hallmark where he transitioned from individual contributor to creating a job conducting creativity seminars to his self-styled position of Creative Paradox. MacKenzie said that during “those 30 years, there was not a day when I was not subject to the inexorable pull of corporate tugging me toward the tangle of the hairball where the ghosts of past successes outvoted original thinking.“ Hallmark hired MacKenzie to create and he decided the best way to that was to connect people to the emergent, abnormal and unusual in order to foster change and innovation throughout the organization. Orbiting the Giant Hairball may be more than a decade old but it is far from dated. If anything – it is even more valuable in today’s turbulent environment.
  • 3.
    • Stay Awake
    • The breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you.
    • Don’t go back to sleep.
    • You must ask for what you want.
    • Don’t go back to sleep.
    • People are going back and forth across the doorsill where the two worlds touch.
    • The door is round and open.
    • Don’t go back to sleep.
    • -Rumi
  • 4.
    • Mind Mapping
    • A mind map is a diagram used to represent words, ideas, tasks, or other items linked to and arranged around a central key word or idea. Mind maps are used to generate, visualize, structure, and classify ideas, and as an aid in study, organization, problem-solving, decision making and writing.
    • The elements of a given mind map are arranged intuitively according to the importance of the concepts, and are classified into groupings, branches, or areas, with the goal of representing semantic or other connections between portions of information. Mind maps may also aid recall of existing memories.
    • By presenting ideas in a radial, graphical, non-linear manner, mind maps encourage a brainstorming approach to planning and organizational tasks. Though the branches of a mindmap represent hierarchical tree structures, their radial arrangement disrupts the prioritizing of concepts typically associated with hierarchies presented with more linear visual cues. This orientation towards brainstorming encourages users to enumerate and connect concepts without a tendency to begin within a particular conceptual framework.
  • 5.
    • Hairball:
    • “ The bureaucracy that companies create through endless rules, policies, procedures, management layers and practices. Each ‘rule’ is like a little hair that gets connected or knotted to other hairs, and the result is a giant hair ball.”
    • Question:
    • How do you avoid the hypnotic pull of bureaucracy?
  • 6.
    • Original
      • 1. having to do with an origin, source or beginning. 2: never having existed before. 3: created or invented independent of already existing ideas or works.
    • Question:
        • How do you become “original” inside an organization?
  • 7. Frequently Asked Questions
    • Do I need to subscribe to the BBC? How do I subscribe?
    • Yes, we would like to get to know you! To subscribe, visit our website and click on “Business Book Club”.
    • When is the next session?
    • The next session is August 18 th . The book is The Carrot Principle by Adrian Gostick & Chester Elton.
    • Where can I order books?
    • You can find each book on our website. Your purchases are processed through Amazon.
    • What if I wish to recommend a book for the BBC?
    • We always love new ideas! Please let us know your suggestions. If you are an author, please submit a review copy for consideration.
    • What does The Meyvn Group do?
    • The Meyvn Group is an organizational development advisory firm. We specialize in human resources consulting, training & development and business coaching. Learn more about us on our website.
    • How can I contact you with additional questions?
    • Contact us by phone at (515) 299-0983 or email at
    Visit our website at
  • 8. $100 OFF! Use this coupon to receive $100 off one (1) seat in our signature program Leaders to Go! Offer is valid for September 16-17 class only . To redeem this limited time offer, visit our registration page and enter “L2G4ME” in the comments box.
    • Not Your Typical Leadership Program
    • A Learning Laboratory for Business Leaders
    • This one-of-a-kind program immerses participants in a series of activities that allow them to:
          • Learn the essential qualities of effective leaders
          • Discover a model for developing others
          • Establish expectations and create accountability
          • Build high performance leaders, teams, and organizations
    • Who will be there? Managers, directors, administrators, department heads, vice presidents, and owners. Business professionals – just like you!
    • SEPTEMBER 16-17, 2009
    • To learn more about this program and to register, visit our website: