Integrative thinking is a form of reasoning which allows you to constructively face the tensions of opposing models. Instead of choosing one at the expense of the other, you generate a creative solution. Your solution contains elements of the individual models, but is superior to each.

ON Integrative Thinking

The Opposable Mind

Organizations need to incorporate the best of design thinking into their ways of working to unleash innovation and creativity. An organization will be able to counter-balance analytical thinking with intuitive thinking – to enable it to both exploit existing knowledge and create new knowledge. 

ON Design of Business

The Design Of Business

Critical to the success of every organization, strategy is not a long planning exercise or document. Strategy can be simple, fun and effective and is founded on a set of five interrelated and powerful choices that positions an organization to win. 

ON Strategy

Playing To win

While prevailing theory holds that stock-based compensation perfectly aligns corporate executives’ incentives with those of shareholders, it does the opposite. As a consequence, executives have done brilliantly while shareholders have become increasingly frustrated. Incentives and governance practice needs to be transformed to enable corporations to prosper in a way that better serves society.

ON Incentives & Governance

Fixing the Game

The combination of the stagnation of medium incomes and the rapid rise of high incomes is threatening the future of democratic capitalism. Its predictive future requires building a more robust knowledge, transactional and physical infrastructure for broadly shared prosperity.

ON Democratic Capitalism

The Rise (and Likely Fall) of the Talent Economy

For both social entrepreneurs and corporations, the key tenet of social innovation is finding ways to make the world a better place. My work focuses on building tools for social entrepreneurs to create more powerful models for creating value for society and developing models to guide corporations on a path of productive corporate citizenship.

ON Social Innovation

Getting Beyond Better


In this primer on the problem-solving power of “integrative thinking,” Martin draws on more than 50 management success stories, including the masterminds behind The Four Seasons, Proctor & Gamble and eBay, to demonstrate how, like the opposable thumb, the “opposable mind”-Martin’s term for the human brain’s ability “to hold two conflicting ideas in constructive tension”-is an intellectually advantageous evolutionary leap through which decision-makers can synthesize “new and superior ideas.” Using this strategy, Martin focuses on what leaders think, rather than what they do. Among anecdotes and examples steering readers to change their thinking about thinking, Martin gives readers specific strategies for understanding their own “personal knowledge system” (by parsing inherent qualities of “stance,” “tools” and “experience”), as well as for taking advantage of the “richest source of new insight into a problem,” the “opposing model.” Each of the eight chapters is well organized, making for a clear and cumulative read. Part inspiration, part logic lesson, this title will provide fresh perspective for anyone prepared to dust off her thinking cap.

FORMAT: Paperback
PUBLISHER: Harvard Business Press
PUBLISH DATE: 9/1/2007
ISBN: 1422139778
PAGES: 224

Thought Pillar:


"This book will almost certainly enable you to go beyond the sort of reasoning taught at most B-schools."
– India Business Today


Financial Times
Richard Evans Opposable Mind Review  

best of lists Innovation Channel
10 Best Books on Innovation to Get You Through the Recession 
January 6, 2008
now available playing to win strategy toolkit