X Prize: change = leadership

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in Best-Practices Leadership,HR Management,Human Resources,Leaders & Managers

Peter Diamandis wants to change the world through his X Prize Foundation, a nonprofit that promotes innovation through competitions. What he has is the “vision thing,” so elusive and yet so vital to leadership.

The Harvard-trained medical doctor and MIT-educated aerospace engineer established a $10 million prize for the first private space flight. Last fall, he announced a $10 million payoff in genetics, and this year he’s gunning for the first production-ready, ultrahigh-mileage car.

His vision: Unleash invention, because corporate and government bureaucracies are too risk-averse to tolerate maverick thinkers.

Diamandis wants to live to be 700 years old through advances in genomics and nanotechnology. Because the modern concept of technology is only 100 years old, he feels that the internet, cell phones and space travel will become old hat within our lifetime, and that technology is merely an infant.

Bottom line: What do you wish for? How can you make it happen?

—Adapted from “To the Victor,” Christian DeBenedetti, Outside.

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