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Yes to the Mess: Leadership Lessons from Jazz

An improvisational mindset is important to a musician. If they listen carefully they can change their notes, invent something new, and adapt to changing rhythms and melodies. That same mindset is important in business.
Frank J. Barrett, jazz pianist and management scholar, says this improvisational “jazz mindset” – and the skills and competencies that go along with it—is crucial for effective leadership. Like skilled jazz musicians, organizations must take this inventive approach to successfully deal with issues that range from crisis management to spontaneous decision making to unforeseen new realities.
Barrett will perform, and read, from his latest book YES TO THE MESS: Surprising Leadership Lessons from Jazz, and examine the principles of jazz thinking and performance that can help anyone develop the competencies required in organizations today.


Frank Barrett Professor Mgmt Scholar Jazz Musician US Navy's Graduate School of Business and Public Policy