Detonate: Why And How Corporations Must Blow Up Best Practices To Survive

Most companies today claim they’ve embarked on a transformation to ensure their long-term survival in an era of disruption. But in their day-to-day practices, many of their leaders and employees blindly follow the same practices they always have — or worse — they follow them knowing they have no value. Why the disconnect?

Leading strategy and innovation consultants Geoff Tuff and Steven Goldbach set out to find answers. Leaning on their cumulative five decades consulting to some of the world’s most successful companies and supplemented by a recent survey of over 300 organizations, they reveal a surprise: Persistently following best practices is unlikely to lead to long-term success, and makes it harder to win with customers.

Overturning conventional wisdom, “DETONATE: Why—And How—Corporations Must Blow Up Best Practices (And Bring a Beginner’s Mind) to Survive” (Wiley, May 8, 2018), by Tuff and Goldbach is an urgent clarion call to companies to detonate their old ways of operating so they can reinvent their internal processes and topple disruptive competition.

Until now, the relatively slow speed of marketplace evolution has allowed wasteful habits to continue without consequence. But given the rapid technology revolution and evolving business environment, companies can no longer rely on playbooks of yesteryear — or even yesterday.

Anchored in philosopy and work approach rather than processes and playbooks, four principles in this book will help you adopt a Detonate mindset:

  1. Focus your activities on understanding and driving human behavior.
  2. Bring a “beginner’s mind” to all that you do.
  3. Embrace impermanence.
  4. Build minimally viable moves to test and learn.

Practical, optimistic and empowering, “DETONATE” will light a match of inspiration under CEOs, senior management, entrepreneurs and employees seeking to understand the whys and wherefores of their daily work routines. Once they start detonating, they can free their organization from old-school practices and will reinvigorate its long-term health with next-generation thinking.

The authors

Geoff Tuff is a principal at Deloitte Consulting LLP and a senior leader of the organization’s innovation and applied design practices. In the past, he led the design firm Doblin and was a senior partner at Monitor Group, serving as a member of its global board of directors before the company was acquired by Deloitte. He has been with some form of Monitor for more than 25 years.

Tuff’s work centers around helping clients transform their businesses to grow and compete in nontraditional ways. Over the course of his career, Tuff has worked in virtually every industry, and he uses that breadth of experience to bring novel insights about how things might operate to clients stuck in industry conventional wisdom.

Tuff is valued for his integrative approach to solving problems. He combines deep analytic and strategic expertise with a natural orientation toward approaches embodied in design thinking. He is a frequent speaker and writer on the topic of growth through innovation and has written for a variety of outlets, including the Harvard Business Review. He holds degrees from Dartmouth College and Harvard Business School.

Steven Goldbach is a principal at Deloitte Consulting LLP and serves as the organization’s chief strategy officer. He is also a member of the Deloitte U.S. executive leadership team. Before joining Deloitte, Goldbach was a partner at Monitor Group and head of its New York office.

Goldbach helps executives and their teams transform their organizations by making challenging and pragmatic strategy choices in the face of uncertainty. He is an architect, expert practitioner, and teacher of the variety of strategy methodologies developed and used by Monitor Deloitte over the years. Serving clients in many industries, including consumer products, telecommunications, media and health care, Goldbach helps companies combine rigor and creativity to create their own future.

Previously, Goldbach was the director of strategy at Forbes. He holds degrees from Queen’s University at Kingston and Columbia Business School.