Business and Digital Transformations require organizations to have a holistic understanding of how things are made, how things are bought, how things are sold and how services are provided which includes analyzing Strategy, Politics, Innovation, Culture and Execution (SPICE). Here are a few quotes to remember.


A. Strategy

  1. Without context, data collection is just noise.
  2. Frameworks can limit/expand what you can do.
  3. The fallacy of strategy is that it cannot be measured.
  4. Even the logical decisions of today can turn into the blunders of tomorrow.
  5. Advice turns into obstacles when going into uncharted territory.
  6. A strategy is only useful when what you say and write changes into what you act upon.
  7. A strategy is a set of assumptions and biases.
  8. A network is only as strong as its weakest node.
  9. Pivoting helps you avoid complacency and demise.
  10. Hindsight is 20/20 only if something is learned.
  11. The easiest solution is not necessarily the best solution.
  12. Most companies have still not figured out how to create a seamless customer experience between online, brick and mortar stores.
  13. Everyone has a plan until reality hits.
  14. Organizations, much like individuals, are the product of their own experiences.
  15. Change the game and the status quo shall falter.
  16. It is time to rethink your strategy if your social media engagement is only a one-way conversation.
  17. The only way organizations can stay competitive is to be disruptors themselves.
  18. It is time to re-think your priorities when you have to think twice about doing the right thing.
  19. The basis and biases of decisions blind you from the truth.
  20. When everyone is in charge then, in reality, no one is in charge.
  21. Don’t segregate but integrate.
  22. Be informed so that at least you have a fighting chance against the unknown.
  23. Your steps will leave a path.
  24. A picture is worth a thousand words but a video is worth more than a million.
  25. Build relationships that last longer than sales cycles.
  26. Cost ≠ Value
  27. Numbers are a funny thing. Sometimes you can drive insight when there is none and/or you ignore them even if there is.
  28. It’s not complicated. The key to success has always been to communicate, communicate, communicate.
  29. “Doing more with less” does not imply that you are thinking about long-term objectives.
  30. Execution without Strategy = Building a house without blueprints
  31. Strategy without Execution = Creating the blueprints of a house but never building the house
  32. Organizations do a disservice to themselves when they limit #innovation to only the Research and Development department.
  33. The only thing constant is change. If you don’t change then you become constant ergo you become obsolete!
  34. Mindsets, tools, methods and management practices of the 20th century are not adequate to solve 21st-century issues.
  35. In business, it is about people, people, people.
  36. With great data comes great responsibility. #entarch #bizarch #itarch Enterprise Architecture
  37. In a nutshell, any project’s failure or success is only dependent upon two factors: Management and Communications.
  38. The basics never go out of style.
  39. Chief Executive Officer (CEO) is the quasi-Enterprise Architect of the organization.

B. Politics

  1. To maintain the status quo, the gatekeepers knowingly and unknowingly prevent new thinking from emerging.
  2. Leaders unite not divide.
  3. The debate is useful but only to a certain point. After that it just becomes noise.
  4. If you ask the right questions to the wrong people, you will still get the wrong answer.
  5. The reinventing of the government must entail a holistic citizen-centric approach at all levels to solve problems.

C. Innovation

  1. Innovation is multi-pronged.
  2. To be disruptive, embrace independent thoughts and understand group thinking.
  3. It is easier to see a rocket fly than to build it.
  4. If your corporate information technology (IT) team is just keeping the lights on then it’s time to re-think innovation.
  5. The stories that resonate with other people are a great litmus test of the strength of your ideas.
  6. Explore worlds beyond yours.
  7. Diversity of thought goes beyond what you are comfortable with.
  8. Challenges breed opportunities.
  9. If you don’t try then how would you know?
  10. Feedback will make you stronger.
  11. Don’t let your past blind you from what is possible in the future.
  12. In today’s “keyword-based” society don’t forget that what you don’t search for might have far more value.
  13. The most powerful question and often the most demanding is asking ourselves “Why?”
  14. Future generations will scratch their heads on what we consider today to be normal.
  15. All ideas need continuous refinement.
  16. Sometimes your own knowledge can blind you from what is actually possible.
  17. If you are continuously looking behind then you will always miss what is ahead of you. #disrupt yourself!
  18. Imagination takes practice.
  19. It is only through what we know and share, we can change the direction of the future.
  20. Holistically, organizations can increase their competitiveness by going beyond just their organizational boundaries.
  21. If you observe the world with your eyes closed then you will always fall down.
  22. We are all in a state of constant evolution. Companies are no different but they insist on maintaining the status quo. Why?
  23. Inspire someone and change the world.
  24. If you always focus on ‘what could have been’ then you will never focus on ‘what can be’.
  25. You do not need an invitation to change the world.
  26. If you doubt conventional wisdom then it is time for a change.
  27. Progress = “what if…”
  28. Inspiration does not have any expiration date.
  29. Impossible problems are the most fun to solve.
  30. Anxiety stifles #innovation in people, families, organizations, and countries.
  31. “Disruption” which lacks a well-thought-out plan for implementation is merely chaos.
  32. If the past is looked at to predict the future then we would still be in caves.
  33. Obstacles are an opportunity to grow. Keep going!
  34. Everything has a solution.
  35. Optimism is to live in the realm of infinite possibilities by focusing on what can be…
  36. Just because you know something does not mean that you know everything.
  37. Human progress is largely attributed to those who challenge the status quo and collaborate to achieve a new reality.
  38. Think outside the box to understand the box.
  39. What should be fixed is only dependent upon what you perceive to be broken.
  40. Set your goals on improving something and creativity/innovation will follow.
  41. If something is meant to be done, eventually it will be done.

D. Culture

  1. Organizations succeed or fail one conversation at a time.
  2. Culture transcends most of our thoughts and how we function within organizations and outside of it.
  3. Culture is a way of thinking, behaving and working within the physical, virtual, legal and mental organizational boundaries.
  4. Some would discourage you, some would motivate you but only a few would move you.
  5. Culture embodies leadership values.
  6. Civility is the underpinning of great cultures.
  7. Sometimes observing and stating the obvious can open people’s minds.
  8. The past is there to learn from not to dwell upon.
  9. Don’t tell me how much money you have contributed/donated. Tell me how you have changed the world and made it better.

E. Execution

  1. Transformation is a marathon rather than a sprint.
  2. Collaboration is the way forward.
  3. An organization can only be transformed if it is willing and ready to be transformed.
  4. Failure is just another learning curve.
  5. To go from perception to reality, ask questions.
  6. To eradicate the problem, focus on both the reaction and the root cause.
  7. Organizations are built and destroyed by people’s biases.
  8. You propagate the status quo when you ask the same questions and accept the same answers.
  9. Reports are obsolete by the time you have a chance to read them.
  10. One person’s practicality is another person’s absurdity.
  11. Projects are defined by their scope but it does not mean that they should be done in isolation.
  12. If you don’t make time to learn from your mistakes then you will continue to make them.
  13. Sincere effort + smile = great customer service
  14. Your involvement is determined by your actions. Merely listening and not doing the right thing perpetuates the status quo.
  15. Either you can spend your time complaining or you can do something about it. Your choice.
  16. Intention without execution is simply thoughts without results.
  17. Execution is the difference between theory and practicality.


1. People

  1. How you re(act) to ups and downs is determined by you and the people around you.
  2. The strength of your character is determined by when waters are easy and also when waters are rough.
  3. The greatest change agent is always the one looking back at you in the mirror.
  4. Every age is a learning age.
  5. It is only a failure if you don’t learn from mistakes.
  6. Deeper understanding requires going beyond just descriptive adjectives.
  7. Your perceptions can demonize your past, present, and future.
  8. Commonsense is full of biases.
  9. The single most important factor for success is a discipline without prejudice.
  10. Environment, time and commitment help individuals go from potential to expert.
  11. Experience is not a single event but a range of events that shape our attitude.
  12. Perceptions, Experiences and Time (PET) are the roots of your biases.
  13. To cultivate ambition, you need to have efficient processes and effective tools.
  14. Learning starts when biases are reined in.
  15. The quickest way to align business and information technology is through people.
  16. To waste talent, hire smart people to maintain the status quo.
  17. There is no first world, no developing world, and no third world but there is only one world.
  18. Don’t make judgments when you have only heard one side of what happened.
  19. It is biased who believe they are not biased.
  20. Genuinely empathetic advice is the holy grail of self-improvement.
  21. By not following practical advice, you are choosing to willfully stay ignorant.
  22. It is only through inquiry we find the truth and not merely an interpretation/version of it.
  23. Just because you do not want to engage in a discussion does not mean the issue has been resolved.
  24. Being nice won’t cost you anything but faking it would eat you up inside.
  25. The greatest tragedy of mankind is when our preconceived philosophical reasons prevent us from doing the right thing.
  26. Power is not only about strength but also about influence.
  27. Rule #1: Everything you see/read on the Internet is not always true. Rule #2: If you think it’s from a credible source, re-read rule #1
  28. Leadership is not a one-person sport.
  29. Ironically, you need additional advice whenever you think that you don’t need any.
  30. Retaining a “visionary” person is not easy since after hiring organizations typically (in)directly show that the status quo is the law.
  31. Even smart individuals can collectively make dumb decisions.
  32. The greatest flaw is that equality is considered to be a privileged thing that is reserved only for the select few.
  33. Change is about collaboration and not about the disillusionment of organizational titles.
  34. The arrogance of your perceptions will most certainly lead you astray.
  35. Indecision is still a decision.
  36. Be mindful that words always have unimaginable and irreversible ripple effects.
  37. History can be a great motivator or a great crutch.
  38. Your data collection activities are useless if you cannot act on what you have learned.
  39. No guarantees if an eloquent communicator is truthful or if an inarticulate communicator is lying.
  40. Some will divide, some will watch, some will not participate but only the few will unite you.
  41. The only person you are truly in competition with is yourself.
  42. It is easier to blame than to understand why.
  43. Trust is a blindfold if you don’t verify.
  44. Don’t be limited by what you know but be aware that there is much more you can learn and apply.
  45. If you don’t ask questions then how will you learn?
  46. Openness is a two-way street.
  47. By placing someone in a box, it shows your own inability to see what is possible.
  48. There are certain people whose voices will resonate in your head. Make sure they are positive.
  49. Building walls result in isolation.
  50. If you learn and do not apply then it is like you have not learned anything at all.
  51. If you fill your heart with hatred then that is all you will find.
  52. Without going to the source and asking why what happened, all you are doing is perpetuating your own or someone’s bias.
  53. The true value of your worth is not how many times you fall but how many times you get up.
  54. When you invite piranhas to the party, eventually somebody is going to get hurt.
  55. There is a genius in all of us. It just needs a little push to come out and shine.
  56. Reevaluate if you prefer to click, scroll and type rather than engage in human interaction.
  57. The key to happiness is freedom.
  58. Be aware of your biases since they will determine what version of the truth you will believe in.
  59. Leadership isn’t about speeches. It’s about doing the right thing for the masses despite insurmountable obstacles.
  60. There is no Command + Z or Control + Z for life. So, think before you say and do something.
  61. We have 3 options: leave the world as we found it, leave the world worse than it was or leave the world a better place.
  62. Don’t look left, don’t look right, don’t look up, don’t look down, don’t look in front and don’t look behind. Just start, by looking within!
  63. You cannot demand patience from others unless you have displayed it yourself.
  64. Don’t waste your time on self-doubt. Get up and do what needs to be done!
  65. There are 4 types of people: the supporters, the opposers, the ignorers and those who don’t know you.
  66. You become a leader when you move from me to us.
  67. The relevancy of your bias will determine your engagement.
  68. Everyone has opinions but only a few can actually back them up with empathy, wisdom, and experience.
  69. If you always succeed then you will never understand the lessons failure is teaching you.
  70. Greatness is not limited to your age.
  71. Life is always more than what you see with your eyes.
  72. The only person stopping you from achieving your dreams is you.
  73. Success is never a straight line.
  74. In times of difficulty, the true nature of the human condition is revealed.
  75. Every opportunity is a learning opportunity.
  76. There are many opinions but only one truth.
  77. Perceptions matter!
  78. Your brain is your lottery, use it wisely.
  79. Deep down, it is all about the “right” balance!
  80. Seek knowledge, apply wisdom.
  81. Experience is an asset until it becomes an obstacle to change.
  82. Bias is the enemy of doing the right thing.
  83. A country, a society, a family cannot change unless its people are united for change, believe in change and have the discipline to achieve it.
  84. Leadership is not a position but a mindset.
  85. The biggest challenge/accomplishment is to accept people who are different than you.
  86. There are people who will put you down. There are people who will put you up. It is up to you who you are going to listen to.
  87. A sincere ‘thank you’ can be the foundation of a long relationship.

2. Process(es)

  1. Opportunities abound in inefficiencies.
  2. Times change. Learn when to flow like the water or when to be like an unmovable rock.
  3. Content is nothing without context.
  4. Just because organizations are comprised of humans does not necessarily mean that they act like a human.
  5. If you know something, apply it. If you have applied it then teach it. If you have taught it then improve it. Repeat.
  6. Since everything is a process thus everything can be improved.

3. Product(s)
4. Service(s)
5. Technologies

  1. It is a big problem when organizations think that the strategic use of Information Technology (IT) is only about automating paper forms.
  2. Technology can help you manage, scale, quantify and innovate but all of this is useless without the right people.
  3. Informed decisions should be based on information that needs to be “picked up” and “dropped off” at the right place and time.
  4. Data without context is the major cause of misrepresentation of information and decision-making.
  5. Data is black or white. Its interpretation makes it colorful. So, be wary of when ‘data’ and ‘to believe’ are used together.
  6. The only true key distinction between you and your competitors is information and how it is used or not used.
  7. There has to be a better way. Endless lists generated by @google, @facebook, @twitter, and others aren’t user friendly.
  8. Just because we capture(big) data does not mean people will use it to make decisions.
  9. If a presidential election can be won by effectively using data mining/analytics then the same principles can be used to make things better.
  10. Effective utilization of technology is a competitive advantage.
  11. As I observe the world, it all comes down to informed-decision making.
  12. Technology is the ‘oil’ of the new economy. While oil is a limited resource, the utilization of technology is only limited by human imagination.
  13. At the end of the day, technology has always been about people.

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