Starke: Our Rogue Band of Do-Gooders
When we at the experience design firm Think Company are working with clients and helping them envision an optimal future for their customers, employees, and organization at large, one of the things we always try to do is get folks out of their day-to-day environment (no matter how beautiful/functional) and get them over to one of our Think Spaces. Yes, these are pretty unique and special places that exist for exactly the purpose of thinking out loud and thinking big, but it’s really about allowing ourselves the physical and mental space to be more objective, strategic, and visionary.
However, for me personally, Think Spaces are my day-to-day, and I know I’m overdue for a change of environment and schedule as well. Equally important, I need those things in the company of folks I admire, can learn from, influence, and scheme with. The GPLEX trip to Seattle checks all of these boxes and then some, including having it all happen in a city doing some really interesting things and providing access to local leaders I can learn from and interact with as well.
Now, all of that is admittedly self-centered, but Philly needs this special group of folks to be able to get away with purpose, hit their own “reset buttons”, and strengthen their relationships, bonds, and audacious plans for making an impact on this great city of ours in a tangible, inclusive, and demonstrable way. I firmly believe leaders in Philadelphia coming together to act as “rogue bands of do-gooders” can serve as an example for other cities—we’ve got the grit, the talent, and the brainpower… and GPLEX will help us to continue to generate ideas on how and where we direct it.
I am really excited to get to spend a few focused days with the amazing cohort we have attending this year without the distractions of our daily lives or “having to get back home” tugging at us (and I’ve got two little kids, so that tugging is mighty strong). Looking forward to spending time with you all in October!
Russ Starke is Chief Executive Officer of Think Company and a member of the Economy League Board of Directors.