Wednesday 22 July 2009

Making money with passion, and all that jazz…

Jazz, despite its seemingly free-wheeling style, operates to passionately-felt and carefully defined disciplines that provide an essential context for high levels of improvisation and creativity.
It just seems loose...
Some time ago, the tenor-saxophonist, Frank Foster (Count Basie Band), was playing a street concert from the Jazzmobile in Harlem. He called for a blues in b-flat. A young tenor player began to play "out" from the first chorus, playing sounds that had no relationship to the harmonic progression or rhythmic setting. Foster stopped him.
"What are you doing?"
"Just playing what I feel"
"Well feel something in B-flat, motherfucker"
(Source Wynton Marsalis, The Guardian)

In the same way, running a business in the current economic climate requires basic disciplines to encourage and guide highest levels of innovation to ensure survival.
Setting and working within the core discipline of an acceptable level of Return on Capital Employed, allowing sufficient freedom to innovate and improvise with optimum energy, has to provide a basis for survival and growth, even enjoyment, despite the impossible odds.
However, if creative initiatives cause you to ignore the reality of ROCE KPIs, don't be too surprised if someone else reminds you of the basics, passionately...!

1 comment:

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