Cirque du Soleil's Daniel Lamarre on How to Put Creativity at the Center of Your Strategy 2022

November 9, 2022

“There is no excuse. Creativity has to be at the forefront.” If you don’t do that, one day you will wake up and discover your competitors have an edge on you, and then you’re in trouble.

Daniel Lamarre is the executive vice chairman of Cirque du Soleil, a position he took after serving for nearly two decades as the circus and entertainment company’s president and CEO. He is the author of, Balancing Acts: Unleashing the Power of Creativity in Your Life and Work, which describes how others can unleash Cirque’s creative management techniques, even if they’re not in the business of clowns and acrobats.

HBR editor in chief Adi Ignatius sat down with Lamarre in this episode of our video series “The New World of Work” to talk about:

• Reviving the company after a disastrous Covid-inflicted shutdown of Cirque’s operations and painful layoffs.
• His decision to leave a comfortable position as TV network CEO to “run away” and join the circus, and what it taught him about being true to his own values and ambitions.
• The surprisingly analytical side of Cirque, which relentlessly tweaks and perfects its show formulas based on continuous audience feedback.

This interview part of a series called “The New World of Work,” which explores how top-tier executives see the future and how their companies are trying to set themselves up for success. Each week, HBR Editor Adi Ignatius will interview a leader on LinkedIn Live — and then share an inside look at those conversations and solicit questions for future discussions in a newsletter just for HBR subscribers. If you’re a subscriber, you can sign up for the newsletter here:

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  1. I can’t understand the first book he suggests, anyone?

  2. My area of expertise is in change management and organizational culture. After CdS implosion and economic stringency… many of the original performers were concerned about the abrupt change in culture (Not unlike Google's efforts at bringing economic order to controlled chaos). Sorry I missed the live version.

  3. With technology and advances in space travel will we see interstellar performance

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