Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Seeing the Invisible ….

During the NC Research Campus Dedication in Kannapolis, NC on November 20, 2008, David Murdock gave a speech where he referenced an adage “To do the Impossible you have to see the Invisible.” His remarks are an excellent example of out of the box thinking. He references the time when the textile mill was demolished and a vision emerged of a research campus rising in its place. At that time people thought the idea was crazy talk as described by Erskine Bowles in his speech. At the time of the dedication there were three magnificent buildings which had replaced the rubble of the previous mill. See images of these three buildings in NC Research Campus Dedication Power Point Presentation. The speeches can be accessed from slide 4 of the presentation. I highly recommend anyone reading this blog take time to listen to his speech and two others which have been posted on YouTube.

· David Murdock Owner and Chairman Dole Food Company and Castle & Cooke, Inc.
· Erskine B Bowles President University of North Carolina
· Dr. Victor J Dzau, MD Chancellor for Health Affairs, Duke University President & CEO, Duke University Health System

As emphasized in the NC Research Campus website:
“The Research Campus will be a thriving scientific community where the best minds will shape the way we understand nutrition and its relationship to disease.”—David H. Murdock—NC Research Campus Founder and Visionary.

I see this as an excellent example of non-applied Research. This is depicted in the Building Competitive Services & Wares diagram to the right where Business does not overlap in the Research block area. The NC Research Campus is unique in that there will be Scientists from 7 NC Universities. They will have access to state of the art equipment, types that would not be practical for an individual University to own but as partners with other Universities all benefit from a common research resource. Applied research is in the area where the Business Block overlaps the Research Block. Pepsi Cola announced at the dedication they will be a partner with the center and will focus on taking the research results into the marketplace. Other Business Partners are already on the campus with others expected to join. More information related to the diagram can be found at Focus on Business Engine.

Several years ago I heard somewhere that a Visionary sees what the future can be, an Administrator gets the most out of the paradigm where he is operating and a Leader is someone that can see the future (invisible) and move from the old paradigm to the new paradigm. David Murdock is a prime example of a Leader in this respect.

Hopefully this blog entry will give the reader a new set of eyes regarding “New ways of thinking inside and outside the Box.”