1: Go deep before you fire single synapse on a solution: Suck up every scrap of context, information, understanding, perspective, technology, widget, process, challenge, and agenda so you have a complete grasp of the big picture and the small stuff you can only find under the cushions with tweezers. Get the big and small stories hiding in plain sight too.
2: Front load a big strategy with great decisions and enough supportive energy to last a long time: Michael is so serious about this one he found an awesome facilitation partner Jenny Trautman and created a sister company, Same Page Partners with her. They cooked up a really different unique way to help people make difficult decisions about complicated things while actually having fun in the process. more about this practice here
3: The more complex an idea the simpler and more tangible you need to make it: Humans were not born to naturally understand string theory, service oriented architecture, or things like algorithmic CRM management. After all it wasn’t too long ago in our evolution, yes even before PowerPoint, when the world was divided up between A: What could eat us, and B: What we could eat. This means any fancy complicated idea(like a new application or service area) that exist in our heads can’t be seen, touched or run away from so it’s way harder to understand.