Tag Archives: Hasbro

Can mastery and innovation coexist?

Jonathan Fields posted this question in a Psychology Today article last week. Here is my answer and would love to hear yours.

It’s a great question and not at all difficult to answer, though it’s better said than done. First of all, mastery is never achieved. It’s a goal, but a goal we’ll never reach. As much as you think that somebody is  ‘the master’ of something, it’s just a psychological illusion. It’s your human biases at work. It’s an illusion because you’re already thinking that it can’t be improved in some way. And that my friend, is your endgame.

In the world of sports this phenomenon is more obvious, and even the people who are considered the best at what they do will tell you they’re always improving because they know they’ll never fully master their craft.

In the business world it’s not all different. Companies have evolved since forever, some started as a completely different business than what they are today. You may master some process but that process will eventually become irrelevant. It will be replaced by either another process (incremental) or by an unforeseen evolutionary paradigm (disruptive).