Exploring the philosophy of work at Deloitte Ventures UK

Written by
David Baker

08 Nov 2019

08 Nov 2019 • by David Baker

To clarify how the mindset applied to work affects thinking and decision making, in 2018, Deloitte Ventures UK engaged Brennan Jacoby’s company, Philosophy at Work, to run a series of “strategic learning sets”. 

Based on the idea that “if it matters, it should be understood”, the workshops help people look at purpose, culture, values, innovation and strategy, and dive deep into how they play out in the workplace. Participants read a hand-picked book and use philosophical enquiry to make connections between the text and group’s work. Jacoby describes the approach as bringing together “the best bits of a book club and the agility of an ideation sprint”. 

Over three sessions, 15 senior leaders from various Deloitte teams, including HR, learning and development, strategy, innovation and ventures, and market insights, read Mindset by Carol Dweck. The book investigates how people tackle problems, approach skills learning and develop resilience. Discussions brought together the group’s professional experience with a philosophical approach that challenged their thinking. 

Catherine Wallwork, Deloitte Ventures UK’s head of innovation engagement and mindset, says the workshops “were invaluable in informing narratives, strategy and designing experiments for innovation engagement and mindset. But I believe the value was not only the insights but the process of bringing people together who have a shared purpose to solve a real-life business challenge and the experience and connection. it leaves the group with,” she adds. 

Read: The business of thinking - applying practical philosophy to decision making

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