As some of you will know, I spend my life teaching people to improvise in business and I use parallel examples from the world of music in order to embed concepts such as flow, mastery, emotional intelligence, combinatorial creativity and so on. In a disruptive world, a core skill for leaders is that of structured improvisation.

So, it’s always a good idea to take your own medicine if you are to preach the gentle art of improvisation. Here is a piece of music I composed for the festive season, themed around our feline friends. The piece, recorded on rudimentary equipment was inspired by an initial synthesiser sound which reminded me of a cat. So I set about composing a piece of music that was inspired by the sound. Eventually, I sampled the sound of my publisher’s own real cat to add realism to the piece.

The piece evolved through several iterations as all good creative endeavours usually do. Out of some 40 or so tracks I recorded, I disposed of about half of the recorded material to give the piece simplicity and coherence. Innovation also usually benefits from simplification. In music this often means leaving things out.

So, please enjoy this piece “Cool Cats” with some great video footage from Fun Compilations:


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PETER leads Human Dynamics, offering Business and Organisation Development. He also delivers keynotes around the world that blend business intelligence with parallel lessons from music via The Academy of Rock. Author of and contributor to twelve books on business leadership, acclaimed by Tom Peters, Professors Charles Handy, Adrian Furnham, and Harvey Goldsmith CBE. His blends his three passions are science, business, and music into unique inspiring keynotes based on the art of storytelling. His early life involved leading innovation teams for 18 years to develop life-saving drugs including the first treatments for HIV/AIDS, Herpes and the development of Human Insulin. 18 years in academia teaching MBAs and 18 + years running his businesses. All his life since the age of four playing music. Peter won a prize for his work from Sir Richard Branson after his mother claimed he was a Virgin birth. He now writes for Virgin.com.
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