Welcome to the Da Vinci Institute: School of Business Leadership

Significance of the purple cow

RESPONSIBLE

EMPOWERING

MINDFUL

ALIGNED

REVOLUTIONARY

KIND

AGILE

BOLD

LEADING

ENGAGING

GUIDELINES OF PRACTICE

Our guidelines of practice are to:

  • Develop a practice of disruptive innovation
  • Apply situated learning, problem probing and decision making as critical constructs
  • Embed transdisciplinarity
  • Be socially accountable
  • Actively promote diversity and heterogeneity
  • Promote and manage quality in innovative and meaningful  ways
  • Appreciate where we are before exploring where we want to go
  • Acknowledge the world as a set of interdependent systems (systemic thinking)
  • Be relevant and remarkable

Significance of the purple cow

The symbolism of the purple cow in our branding is two-fold, on the one hand it draws from the works of renowned author Seth Godin (2003) [see the piece in praise of the purple cow]  who narrates that if you drive by a herd and see them for a while, they become boring. “They may be well-bred cows, Six Sigma cows, cows lit by a beautiful light, but they are still boring.” If you then see a Purple Cow standing in the field you have to tell someone because it is so different. The essence of the Purple Cow — “the reason it would shine among a crowd of perfectly competent, even undeniably excellent cows — is that it would be remarkable. When something forces you to remark on it, by definition it is remarkable. Something remarkable is worth talking about, worth paying attention to. Boring stuff quickly becomes invisible”.

At Da Vinci we encourage people to find their voice, ensure they are the purple cow in a herd – always remarkable. Owning cattle in the African tradition, denotes wealth – I am revered by my peers based on the prowess of my herd. Aligned to this is the emergence of a sense of pride, endurance and commitment, amidst the ever so harsh environmental changes traversing the African continent. Thus, apart from the Godin idea of being remarkable, it is the pride, endurance and commitment that should harness the remarkability within each Davinican. We posit that if a person is a remarkable business leader s/he will generate wealth for self and other in an attempt to facilitate the development of a sustainable society.