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Why Brands Need to Practice ‘Nimbleocity’

Why Brands Need to Practice ‘Nimbleocity’

Eric Solomon and Gopi Kallayil

Knowledge@Wharton | Jan 13, 2015

Brands that take bigger risks are reaping greater rewards in the world of digital marketing, write Google’s Eric Solomon and Gopi Kallayil in this opinion piece.

Strange and dangerous things happen every day, some representing bold and risky breakthroughs. On October 24, 2014, Alan Eustace, senior vice president of knowledge at Google, a respected engineer and leader, made waves by jumping from the stratosphere, breaking the world record previously set by Felix Baumgartner in 2012. Wearing a specially designed spacesuit, Alan ascended in a balloon to a height of more than 25 miles and then jumped into space, reaching a peak speed of 833 mph (greater than the speed of sound) as he plummeted toward Earth. Even more interesting, Eustace planned the jump in total secrecy — a private initiative with a small, dedicated team of experts, without the support of one single dollar in sponsorship money.

Eustace did it because he wanted to do it: One man guided by passion and compelled by the sheer risk of the jump, resulting in a new world record and opening up the stratosphere for research. The fact that the jump was orchestrated by a small team working without the overhang of a larger organization may have given Eustace and his team the freedom and speed they needed to break the record.

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