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Why do some corporate superstars collapse dramatically, while others survive and prosper over many decades? Is the fall primarily caused by ‘technical factors’, such as poor products and pricing, financial management or market choices, by self-aggrandisement, or perhaps by poor leadership attributes and capabilities?

Greg Park argues that ultimately organisational survival and optimal performance over the long term is dependent upon collaborative wisdom. Within the dominant coalition of a successful community or corporation there is an inherited, pervasive, commonly and collectively held dominant logic, comprising leadership principles, perspectives and priorities, based upon universal values which are understood and accepted as satisfying the requirements and aspirations of each stakeholder. This collaborative wisdom ensures cohesive and consistent behaviour across and within every function of a complex, fast-moving organization. Its practical application is reflected in the daily operational decisions of leaders within the organisation, be they divisional, departmental heads or supervisors. Without collaborative wisdom organisational collapse is the inevitable result, primarily through the disintegration of belief, confidence, motivation, cohesion, advocacy and energy within and between key stakeholder groups.

Collaborative Wisdom examines the nature and criticality of wisdom as a leadership attribute, how effective operational leadership is not just about knowledge and experience, but more fundamentally about a cognitive mental process which considers and consistently applies fundamental values, principles, perspectives and priorities in an analytical and affective manner. This ensures effective operational leadership and optimal organisational performance over the long term, informed by experience, instinct, intuition, but also by insight, judgment and ultimately, wisdom.

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