For over 25 years I have enjoyed a very productive collaboration with Bill Fulkerson. During this time, Bill shared myriad bookmarks to articles that contributed to our joint study of social systems dynamics and subsequent development of organization designs. As I go through my archives, I’m posting those which highlight particular aspects of our collaboration that may be of broader interest to readers. This, then, is the first:

Lessons from the edge: What companies can learn from a tribe in the Amazon

The Surui, an Amazonian tribe, fought back from the brink of obsolescence by embracing learning through a variety of technologies and partners, illustrating useful lessons for enterprises trying to learn and adapt to the Big Shift. 1

The Shift Index

We developed the Shift Index to help executives understand and take advantage of the long-term forces of change shaping the US economy. The Shift Index tracks 25 metrics across more than 40 years. These metrics fall into three areas: 1) the developments in the technological and political foundations underlying market changes, 2) the flows of capital, information, and talent changing the business landscape, and 3) the impacts of these changes on competition, volatility, and performance across industries. Combined, these factors reflect what we call the Big Shift in the global business environment. 2

  1. Hagel, John, and John Seely Brown. “Lessons from the Edge: What Companies Can Learn from a Tribe in the Amazon.” Deloitte Insights. Accessed March 24, 2021. [return]
  2. Hagel, John, John Seely Brown, Maggie Wooll, and Andrew de Maar. “The Paradox of Flows: Can Hope Flow from Fear?” Deloitte Insights. Accessed March 24, 2021. [return]