Paolo Magrassi

Presentations / Lectures



Overwhelmed by the ever-accelerating pace of technological innovation, we have now entered the “good-enough society”. Its manifestations include Wikipedia, IP telephony, mp3 audio, tablatures instead of sheet music, mass customization, breadth-first learning, the superstore, service-oriented computing architectures, and more. Where is this trend taking us and how will it affect the business world and the lives of entrepreneurs and managers? The presentation is a trip into a future which is already happening, to discover that from 6-Sigma we will proceed onto 3-Sigma; from optimal to suboptimal; from planning to permanent prototyping; from reaching for the top to aiming at Horatian mediocritas.



 The world is becoming more and more complex due to increasing interconnections. Hence we are witnessing an explosion of books, consulting proposals and software claiming to help enterprises tame “complexity theory” for their advantage. However, this is happening awkwardly, with profound scientific concepts being distorted and often caricatured. Despite the fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) spread by consultants, 99% of managers do not need become involved with complexity theory at all. And that tiny minority who do, will be better off grasping the basic scientific concepts rather that losing themselves in endless confused lectures.  At the end of the session attendants will be fluent in sexy complexese and capable to converse with and rebut those who use cool long words to express notions that, once understood, can be spelled out in simplicity. The presentation is taken from Paolo Magrassi’s book Difendersi dalla complessità. Un kit di sopravvivenza per manager, studenti e perplessi (Franco Angeli, 2009).



Digital technologies are not merely changing the business: they are modifying they way homo sapiens stays in Nature. This is the most classical of Paolo Magrassi’s presentations, evolving since 1999 and acclaimed by audiences in three continents so far. It has also crystallized in writings such as Technologies Soon To Enter Your Radar Screen (Gartner, 2001), A World Of Smart Objects (Gartner, 2002) or the 2015 Weekend nel futuro (Il Sole 24Ore, 2005) Italian book. Participants leave the event with a tool allowing them to position in the coming five years’ horizon the digital technologies most relevant to their businesses and personal lives, inclusive of probabilities. The themes are treated in a way at the same time informative (Paolo is a physicist by education) and entertaining.



However skeptical of the ability, on the part of the majority of organizations, to use information technology (IT) as a competitive weapon, still Paolo has been upset all the time by the allegations raised against technology after the Wall Street debacle of 2000. So he won his reluctance and starting in 2003 he developed the successful StandUp! seminar, which puts together all scientific evidence of the positive impact of IT on business, and delivers it in an entertaining and clear fashion. The presentation is based on the internationally-recognized AlphaIC methodology for the evaluation of an organization’s competitiveness (developed with strategy consultant Alessandro Cravera), which allows to assess the impact of technology investments using techniques far more adequate than mundane ROI approaches.

Motto of the month

The Devil can cite Scripture for his purpose. [W. S.]

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