On the Guru Radar
"What does creativity taste like?" poses the Scandinavian academic Alf Rehn in characteristically cryptic style. Rehn is chair of Management and Organization at Finland's Åbo Akademi University. In addition, he is a writer, a columnist, and a speaker.
"Companies still think in terms of products and services. They invest millions in innovating their products and services. They've got it wrong," Rehn laments. "We don't need more, we need better. Most improvements to products and services occur outside organizations - P&G, open innovation, co-creation. We're in a post-original world. There is nothing new under the sun. Originality is in short-supply. And yet, as individuals and organizations we constantly seek out the impossible. We are moving beyond the emphasis on originality to understanding post-originality."
Rehn's shtick can be filed under innovation, but this under-states his intellectual range. He has written a homage to the managerial and organizational triumphs of the great chefs, is involved with a research project into frivolity called Pink Machine, and a host of other endeavours in curiosity. He drinks too much coffee, and is a devoted fan of Ethel Merman and Patsy Cline.