Reimagining business

Walt Disney and Re-Imagining a ‘Nasty’ sector

In order to realise his vision of a new entertainment paradigm (Disneyland), Walt Disney established a subsidiary business made up of a multi-disciplinary group of designers, story tellers, architects, animators and a host of other talented individuals. He tapped into a diverse mix of  new ‘ingredients’ to re-imagine what at that point was a low margin and quite frankly nasty carnival and amusement park sector. He succeeded and the rest as they say is history.


The Imperative of ReImagining in this New Age

We are entering a new age of business. What worked for organisations in the past cannot hope to work past a relatively short 5 year horizon. Some commentators are calling it ‘post capitalism’ , others are calling it the ‘age of experience’ -either way it represents a paradigm shift and most organisations don’t truly understand it, it’s ‘ingredients’ or how to harness it. Therefore Re-Imagining  needs to become a core competency not just just in traditional sectors but of any organisation wishing to resonate in this near-future marketplace.


Reimagining with the right ingredients

At Katawave we came to the realisation that in order re-imagine with our clients at the highest possible levels, we first needed to identify those core ingredients that we would need to play with in order to derive new business insights, concepts and recipes. As any great chef or great designer will appreciate, a dish or design can only be as good as the ingredients or elements that are used in the creative process. Over the past decade we have systematically identified, collated and curated  what we know are the critical ingredients and sub elements that will enable CEO’s and senior executives to re-imagine their businesses in a sustainable and fully holistic manner and make sense of the world beyond their boardrooms. We continue to develop this method and set of ingredients through a systematic program of research and development.

Similar to what Ferran Adria has been doing with his El Bulli project (a fundamental catalogue of the building blocks of food for chefs) so to have Katawave achieved for the world of business. Core ingredients like Power, Symbolism, Ritual, Value, Norms and Behaviours have been dissected, explored, applied and formed to create a new genetic creative code for designers, strategists, venture capitalists, brand and marketing managers and business leaders to win in this new age.


Executing Business Reimagination

Based on our significant experience of working globally with clients in order to truly re-imagine, we have learned that you need the following (let’s park the obvious things like leadership commitment etc- if your leaders aren’t committed find another job!)

The right ingredients

Understanding and playing with fundamental shifts, developmental lines, their subsets and tactics of this new age to explore near and far concepts.


The Right Team 

A truly diverse mix of thinking styles and professions to look at things through multiple lenses and different modes, fully harnessed in a collaborative working environment, supported by structured disruptive thinking tools.


The appropriate ‘set up’- this may be a separate entity, an externally managed accelerator, a new division or a ‘red team’- or combinations thereof.



Adoption of an experimental and human centred approach like design thinking, or the scientific method, to trial, learn, fail, win and iterate with the right set of ingredients.

At the Katawave we continue to co-create and re-imagine directions, concepts, propositions, strategies and insights with our client partners. We know we will make mistakes along the way but we are committed to the path we have taken.