Make Magic

January 21, 2014 5 Comments

Make Magic

Seth’s blog this morning reminded me of an ongoing joke that I have with Linda Guinee, my colleague here at IISC.

Seth’s main question is: “Who is in charge of the magic?”

During my early days at IISC, Linda brought me into design and facilitation of an “Innovation Lab” for one of our biggest clients at the time.  It was big break, and I took it seriously.  Linda, who is quite magical herself, kept reminding me of practical things that I still tend to overlook.  At one point she had to remind me that it was important to give the participants a bathroom break!

My reply was “you are killing the magic!”

She has called me “Mr. Magic” ever since.

It was funny.  And it is very important to let people go to the bathroom (I don’t care what those EST people used to say!).  But the ethos of the magician remains centrally important to anyone who cares to make a difference.

Here is how Seth concludes his post:

In our quest to get it done, to survive the project, to avoid blame, to figure out a solution, it’s magic that gets thrown under the bus every time.

Who is obsessed with creating delight, with building in remarkability, with pushing the envelope (every envelope–money, tech, policy) to get to the point where you’ve created something that people will be proud of, that will change things for the better, that will make a dent in the universe?

It won’t happen on its own. It never does.

He is right, this is my commitment to my work, and it is what makes us IISC when we are really good at doing what we do.


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