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Part 4: Access All Parts of the Brain By Gaia Grant Are you using your brain to its full potential? Our brains are not simple ‘input’ / ‘output’ machines. They actually have a myriad of different possible neural connections and cognitive functions, and the most c[...]

Part 3: Unleash your Imagination By Gaia Grant The on-the-spot hackathon: When your boss asks for “creative ideas…” How often have you needed to come up with great ideas fast? It can be challenging to come up with creative ideas under pressure, yet this is exactly what th[...]

Part 2: Accept Ambiguity By Gaia Grant The most straightforward solutions are not always the best. In fact, truly innovative solutions can at first seem the most unlikely, and can be the most challenging to achieve. We introduced in the first article in this series that it is important to start[...]

Part 1: Asking The Right Questions By Gaia Grant “The important and difficult job is never to find the right answers, it is to find the right question.” Peter Drucker Effective Design Thinking must start with enquiry. It involves asking the right questions, and involves using a cr[...]

An overview of some key established and emerging innovation concepts for leaders By Gaia Grant Part two of this innovation guide will outline a few key terms and concepts regarding innovation methodologies, processes and focus, which can be helpful to understand when navigating innovatio[...]

An overview of some key established and emerging innovation concepts for leaders By Gaia Grant Listed here in Part 1 of this innovation guide are a few key terms and concepts surrounding innovation mindsets and culture that can be helpful to know when navigating innovation. Innovation m[...]

Developing greater agility for sustainability in a rapidly changing world By Gaia Grant Gaia Grant has just completed a White Paper on the importance of embracing the new concept of organisations and their leaders being “ambidextrous”. With the iCLi Innovation Change Leader assessment de[...]

By Gaia and Andrew Grant Originally published on Hargraves Institute website Is it more important to focus on sustaining and maintaining current operations, or to focus on survival in the future? This can be a critical question for organisations recognising the need to remain both enduring[...]

If you have a learning event coming up, it might be worth stopping and considering what you really need. Before jumping in and choosing a presenter, it’s worth asking the right questions to ensure you get the right fit. Many people struggle to balance budget parameters with outcomes, so it might be worth realizing that the biggest investment made is not the event cost, but the cost of wasting everyone's time if the session does not deliver.

The power of human-centric innovation through embracing unusual perspectives Although different cultural perspectives are often seen as fuel for disagreement and dissent, they can in fact generate a positive creative dynamic. This second article on empathy reveals how embracing apparently opposin[...]

What does empathy have to do with innovation? By Gaia Grant and Andrew Grant Originally published in a similar format as an article online by Human Resources Media with the title ‘What does empathy have to do with innovation?’. The surprising human-cented connection that counts Who w[...]

Thriving in the age of acceleration in the workplace Originally published in a similar format as an article online by Creative Innovation 2017 with the title ‘Thriving in the age of acceleration in the workplace’. We have noticed a growing trend in innovation: Everyone wants to know ‘W[...]

The art of innovation in the workplace By Gaia Grant and Andrew Grant Originally published in a similar format as an article online by Human Resources Media with the title 'The art of innovation in the workplace'. How taking an artist's perspective can change the way you innovate Artists h[...]

The Antarctic Elephant Seal is an ungainly creature on land. After all, it’s not easy dragging around 4 tons of blubber on 2 flippers. But in its native habitat the water, it moves gracefully and easily, travelling hundreds of kilometres every day, holding its breath for 2 hours and diving 2 kilometres deep. Leaders have similar limitations when they seek to inspire. They thrive in their “native habitats,” feeling right at home, while operating in their “endangered habitats” feels awkward and ungainly, a struggle to survive.

Originally published in a similar format as an article online by Human Resources Media with the title 'What is the leadership quality of the future, according to CEOs?'. This article is an adapted excerpt from The Innovation Race: How to change a culture to change the game Many leaders may not [...]

How to build an innovation hothouse? How is it possible to maximise creative potential in your organisation? This article explores how to identify, train and retain the best creative talent for more innovative results. Some cultures simply do it better.

by Gaia Grant and Andrew Andrew Originally published in a similar format as an article online by Mix Magazine with the title 'Teambuilding: what you need to know'. Gaia and Andrew Grant argue the case for research-driven ‘intelligent teambuilding’ and maximising each session How can[...]

By Gaia Grant and Andrew Grant Adapted excerpt from The Innovation Race book, originally published in a similar format as an article online by Human Resources Media with the title 'How to orchestrate innovation: 3 ways to boost creative alignment'. Although having different perspectives is cri[...]

As a business topic, strategy execution is in its infancy. Yet it's quickly evolving as leaders demand more knowledge, structure and resources on how to achieve it, and remain competitive in the rapidly changing business environment. Guest article by: Robin Speculand.

By Gaia Grant Adapted excerpt from The Innovation Race book, originally published in a similar format as an article online by Human Resources Media with the title 'Why you need to be careful about competition'. What ingredients make an innovative organisation, and how do you create an effect[...]

By Gaia Grant Adapted excerpt from The Innovation Race book, originally published in a similar format as an article online by Human Resources Media with the title 'Why you need to be careful about competition'. Most of us love to watch a race. We love to see winners, losers, the eliminati[...]

By Gaia and Andrew Grant Adapted excerpt from The Innovation Race book, originally published in a similar format as an article online by Human Resources Media Why do some innovation initiatives fail while others succeed? What is the secret ingredient that can make the difference between being[...]

The Innovation Race BookAdapted excerpt from The Innovation Race book, and originally published in a similar format as an article online by Human Resoruces Media

Did you know that you can predict which cities are innovating the fastest by checking the average walking pace of the city?

Here is how to separate myths from facts By Gaia and Andrew Grant Adapted excerpt from The Innovation Race book, and originally published in a similar format as an article online by HRM Online Innovation must be one of the most highly rated values in business today, which has meant it has becom[...]

By Gaia and Andrew Grant Adapted excerpt from The Innovation Race book, and originally published in a similar format as an article online by B&T Innovation has been studied in detail since the 1930s, when it was first connected to business by economist and political scientist Joseph S[...]

By Andrew Grant and Gaia Grant Adapted excerpt from the Grant’s new book The Innovation Race: How to change a culture to change the game. The book is an adventurous journey around the world to explore sustainable innovation principles that can be brought back to contemporary businesses. [...]

by Robin Speculand One of the late Peter Drucker's most famous quotes is “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” This is no longer always true and, in fact, it can more often be the other way around. Because of the accelerated pace of change in business today, strategy tends to eat culture. [...]

In our new book due out soon, The Innovation Race, we touch on an intriguing story about the development of today's mobile phone software. The concept of the humble 'app', now a staple to millions of smartphones, was in fact suggested at a tech company long before Apple had even come up with the idea! So why is Apple known for the app, and not this other company?

What makes an organisation's culture toxic? How can a culture that could be affirming and vibrant so easily turn sour?

2016: Can we predict the future? by Gaia Grant We are back to the beginning of a new year – or at least for some of us. The Chinese will celebrate their New Year early February (the Year of the Monkey) by driving away evil with drums and symbols, parts of India will celebrate their new year [...]

A sneak peek into some of the ideas behind Gaia Grant's planned PhD thesis with Sydney University School of Business “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used to create them.” Albert Einstein VIDEO THESIS INTERVIEW: Winner of the inaugural "Thesis Film Festival" [...]

A sneak peek into some of the ideas behind Gaia Grant's planned PhD thesis with Sydney University School of Business by Andrew and Gaia Grant “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used to create them.” Albert Einstein What would you do if you realised that furniture y[...]

A podcast by Andrew Grant. Topic: Who Killed Creativity and How Can We Get It Back? Listen to podcast, press play button on audio player below: Your browser does not support HTML5 audio element Subscribe to Tirian's Podcast? Copy & paste this link to your podcast / RSS manager [...]

By Gaia Grant Part I of this article can be found here. Working cross-culturally can be a double edged sword. On the one hand, if you are able to leverage cross cultural strengths effectively there is the potential for significant benefits. On the other hand, if there is not the required aw[...]

HSBC have captured the humour in cultural differences - a collection of their best ads. How to get the most from cross cultural and diverse teams By Gaia Grant Have you thought about just how connected the world now is? An aerial view of the world at night from outer space shows a globe c[...]

By Paul Spriggs, Tirian Communications Specialist MVVs are now critical for harnessing & leveraging all ideas, actions and communications. Companies end up doing a lot of “stuff”(and wasting a lot of money) in the attempt to merely get noticed. The ideas and initiatives become[...]

Lorem ipsum. Integer ante arcu, accumsan a, consectetuer eget, posuere ut, mauris. Sed lectus. Aenean tellus metus, bibendum sed, posuere ac, mattis non, nunc. Ut varius tincidunt libero. Aenean posuere, tortor sed cursus feugiat, nunc augue blandit nunc, eu sollicitudin urna dolor sagittis lacus. [...]

By Paul Spriggs, Tirian Communications Specialist Manager: "Wally, your status report is just a bunch of buzzwords strung together." Wally: "I've been giving you that same status report every week for eleven years. Five years ago you adopted it as our mission statement!" You've heard the[...]

By Andrew & Gaia Grant The Mercedes-Benz F015 Luxury in Motion autonomous concept car is shown on stage Did you know that in Germany (the birthplace of the car industry) car sales in the future may drop by as much as 50%? Did you know that predictions in the luxury car industry show th[...]

There may be more benefits than you realise... Now we can justify travel to other cultures and using another language as an opportunity for cerebral development! We have a saying that travel broadens the mind, but what you may not have realised that it also makes the mind more creative. Simp[...]

From Personality Profiles to Reading Tea Leaves: the role of diagnostic tools in leadership development. Personality assessments are regarded by some as little more than fortune telling - and yet they are still highly popular. Is it safe to use them in the workplace? Last issue we describe[...]

From Personality Profiles to Reading Tea Leaves: the role of diagnostic tools in leadership development. Recently I asked a leader how his business was going. “Business is great” he answered, “if it wasn’t for the people!” He was smart enough to see the paradox in his statement, but[...]

Part 2: Supporting innovation in all areas Can you imagine being part of an organisation that pays for employees to spend time working on new ideas? An organisation that ensures all ideas at every level are welcomed and supported, one that does not simply pay lip service to the idea of innova[...]

Organisations that make creativity and innovation central to their existence survive and succeed in the long run. In the 1800s, when New York’s streets were crammed with horse-drawn carriages, the city was threatened with an overwhelming horse manure problem. The city almost didn’t surv[...]

Innovation and implementation must go hand-in-hand By Robin Speculand Identifying the next great innovation is hard enough, but you must also successfully implement it. Sure Steve Jobs made it look easy, but then he was a once in a lifetime innovator along with the likes of Thomas Edison. [...]

Are you supporting all the stages of the creative process? By Gaia Grant with Baroness Susan Greenfield How to capture creative ideas and bring them through to innovation   Have you ever thought about what it really takes to come up with creative ideas and solutions? It is not a simple[...]

"If I had only 1 hour to save the world I would spend 55 mins defining the problem and 5 mins finding the solution.” Albert Einstein Too creative or not enough? Communal toilets! Can you imagine the surprise when the international athletes arrived in Sochi for the Winter Olympics and discov[...]

Author: Gaia Grant   Contemporary teams tend to be highly diverse. Virtual teams, many of which are cross-cultural and become 'silo-minded' due to their physical isolation, require extra cohesion for success. Stresses such as time pressures, geographical and cultural barriers, communication, [...]

The virtual team is here to stay. It is a group of people who are required to pursue shared objectives while based at distant work sites. Members of this team can be in different regions or different locations in the same country. They will therefore frequently need to communicate using electronic o[...]

Author: Gaia Grant     In 1995 several crew members from a European space exploration team became so frustrated that they consciously referred to the managers in HQ as an "enemy" to provide an outlet for their frustration. While this can create the feeling of unity for the team in the[...]

Excerpt from Human Resources magazine feature article July 2013 Author: Gaia Grant NASA is preparing for the first manned expedition to Mars planned for the 2030s. The provisional Nasa budget for this expedition is $17.7bn, so naturally the NASA team is focusing on minimising any potential[...]

Why team building can backfire, and how to ensure it is a worthwhile investment - using intelligent team building and not just childish activities Written by Gaia Grant and Andrew Grant More than a trip to space, Tirian's “The Sky is Not the Limit” uses research from NASA & ga[...]

By Andrew Grant Do 'Self Help" & "Management" books really work? When Covey’s breakthrough book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People first hit the bookshelves I was in my mid-twenties. I was sceptical of the ‘self-help’ book genre, especially the apparently superficial promise that[...]

Why school is out of date for future workforce demands By Gaia Grant and Andrew Grant If you read some of the most popular books on creative thinking, you might conclude that you need to fail at school in order to succeed in life. Many of these books describe the admired contemporary creative [...]

Being correct is no longer good enough - why being creative is what counts By Gaia Grant and Andrew Grant On the last day of her final high school exams, our 17 year old daughter crossed the school quad feeling absolutely shattered. Despite having put her best efforts into studying, she felt sh[...]

The final sentence, and that wretched comma We have just finished the process of assisting an executive team from a Fortune 500 insurance company with designing and implementing a new 5 year vision that will be rolled out country wide. It was a rewarding experience with great outcomes. As we got close to the end of the session, however, the team became stuck in an in depth deliberation over a minute detail. “Do we put a comma in or not?” This discussion went backwards and forwards until I noticed the body language of some members who became increasingly impatient. Many were wondering, “Is it really necessary to debate about a comma?!”

Formula 1 Racing Innovation by Lloyd Irwin You can subscribe to Tirian's Podcast here.[...]

Two accused street smart school students sit in separate rooms awaiting a visit from the Principal. The Principal knows that both of them committed the crimes of which they are accused but she has no proof, and the students know this. What they don’t know is that the tactic the Principal will employ is one of the most powerful methods used to elicit the correct solution in a situation like this. She privately offers each of them a deal. The deal is that if they both confess they will get one detention each, if they both deny the crime they walk free, but if one confesses and the other does not the non-confessor gets expelled while the confessor walks free. This tactic – commonly known as the ‘prisoner’s dilemma’ – plays with the internal conflict we all have as humans between what we know is right for ourselves and what we know is right for the group.

The Collaboration Deception Part 2 by Andrew Grant You can subscribe to Tirian's Podcast here.[...]

The Collaboration Deception Part 1 by Andrew Grant You can subscribe to Tirian's Podcast here.[...]

A series of unfortunate events, the customer experience and the organisational impact.

Things go wrong, there is often no getting around it. And for organisations responsible for serving customers, when things go wrong it can have a major impact on the customer experience and in turn the overall perceptions of the organisation. Yet while some organisations quickly recover and even prosper when things go wrong, others suffer enormously. Statistics show that the customer experience overall is actually declining over time. A quarterly survey of 65,000 Americans which looked at The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) has found that in the past five years the index has dropped. For some reason, the more an emphasis is placed on improving the customer experience, the less it seems to work.

How to use both creative thinking and analytical skills to achieve better results (+ give your children an intelligent Christmas!)

You might like to try playing a game with your children next birthday or Christmas – a game where they have to use their brain to receive a present from you! In this game, there are 3 beautifully wrapped boxes under the tree, 2 boxes containing a picture of a goat and one containing a very expensive present from you. You ask your children to choose which box they think has the most expensive present (they are not allowed to shake or feel the boxes). They can point to any of the three to make their choice. Then, before they make their final commitment, you say you are going to make it easier for them. You open one of the boxes which you know does not contain the expensive gift and show them that box only has a picture of a goat, and remove it from under the tree. Now comes the part where they have to think. Ask them whether they want to stick with the original box they chose, or whether they would rather switch to the other remaining box. Tell them that they only get to keep what’s in the box – whether it is the present or the picture of a goat!

In this second part to the two part article we interview Matt McFadyen to find out more about what he has learnt about leading and working in teams under stress from his experiences in the wild.

Interview with Matt McFadyen, polar adventurer In this article we interview Matt to find out more about what he has learnt about project management, leadership responsibilities and team development from his experiences in the wild. Matt is a special guest keynote speaker a[...]

Lessons from Inception Question: What did the following people all have in common?
- Manfred Eigen, Nobel Prize winner in chemistry (1967)
- Donald Campbell, Scientific Contribution Award from American Psychological Association (1970)
- Freeman Dyson, recipient of Max Planck Medal (1969), quantum electrodynamics
- Kekulé, 19th century chemist – molecular structure of benzene
- Archimedes – weight in water theory.
- Cobb- Inception

Answer: They were not working at the time of their “discoveries”

"We are running an uncontrolled experiment with the only home we have... and mother nature does not do bail outs."
Thomas Freidman: Hot Flat and Crowded

Our family was in the jungles of Borneo a few years ago observing orangutans in their natural habitat. It didn't take long for us all to became entranced by the gorgeous doe-eyed primates with incredibly human-like behavior.

Nervous? Only practice makes perfect.

Although a good presenter can make it look easy, there’s much more than meets the eye when it comes to presenting successfully – and the bottom line, whether you like it or not, is going to be practice and experience.

Middle East Leadership Conference for 2000 people: Daunting or Daring? I have just returned from delivering a keynote talk in the Middle East to up to 2000 people alongside Stephen Covey (The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People), Bob Nelson (1001 Ways to Motivate People) and Jonas Ridderstrale (Funky Business) as the benchmark co-presenters, who have collectively sold tens of millions of books worldwide. Before I left for the trip, many people asked me if I was nervous. I wasn’t feeling anxious ahead of time, but then I started to wonder if perhaps I should be worried. I was the only unknown speaker thrown in with the 3 biggest names in the industry worldwide. There was a lot at stake.

Brain - Inventing The Future Podcast Part 3 by Andrew Grant You can subscribe to Tirian's Podcast here.[...]

Power of Story - Inventing The Future Podcast Part 2 by Andrew Grant You can subscribe to Tirian's Podcast here.[...]

Head Goes Body Follows - Inventing The Future Podcast Part 1 by Andrew Grant You can subscribe to Tirian's Podcast here.[...]

By Andrew Grant Where the head goes the body follows: My son was becoming too adventurous. He had progressed in his snowboarding from the kids’ snow park to the adult park. Making a jump now meant landing on a 45 degree sloping packed ice ramp after clearing a 5 meter air leap into the air[...]

How many shades of brown? Last week we were dropped in what appeared to be the middle of nowhere, and all we could make out as far as the eye could see was endless desert. I was beginning to wonder if we had made a mistake. We had planned a four day desert trek, not really comprehending that the trek would be through, well – desert... just desert! It was 9:30am, and although it was the middle of winter in Egypt, the heat was steadily building and sweat was already dripping down my forehead. The four-wheel drive took off and our Bedouin guide Fraej pointed in to the west. “This way,” he said, and we started walking obediently. There was only sand, and rocks - all brown, all the same.

In the previous articles in this series we have discussed:

  1. the real motivation behind Corporate Social Responsibility enterprises and the need for authenticity (CSR is not a PR Exercise)
  2. the need for authentic concern for the other – not self (Who’s Scalping Who?)

With this third article in the series we are focusing on the social responsibility imperative, considering the values, politics and practice of CSR.

It’s the end of the year. Time to pull out the dusty Christmas decorations for another year’s use and deck the halls with boughs of holly. Time for end of year parties and holiday preparations - and time to reflect on the year that has been.

a) How Plato understands justice in the state, and how it differs from the modern western democratic notion of justice? b) How Aristotle understands the concept of happiness and what he see as its place in education ...

Education is about facing reality and developing skills for ongoing learning and enquiry. In the "MATRIX" movies, the characters are suspended in a free-will world with the capacity to choose to think and feel as they please. However they can never tell which experiences are real and which have been artificially created...

Though many educational philosophers have attempted to devise a systematic theory of moral education, Aristotle and Rousseau remain two of the more widely recognised theorists in the area, both because of the emphasis each had on the importance of an adequate moral education, and because of the revolutionary positions on moral education each took, given the contemporary social and historical contexts in which each of them was writing.

Breathe in the sweet essence. Be dazzled by the bright visual impact, by the riotous colours. Enjoy the textures of soft petals and lace, of brass and stone. Find yourself moving to the rhythm of clanging gongs. It is impossible to stay in Bali and not experience but a little of the sensory feast of the Hindu faith here. As Jay Hemman has discovered, Balinese Hinduism is alive and well, and apparently determined to forge a path well into the future…

By Gaia Grant An examination of the ways in which beliefs and values are passed on to children informally through rituals and ceremonies in the home and the community and any opposition that might be experienced. Support from every facet of the community [...]

By Andrew Grant Over the past few years people from all walks of life in Asia have been forced to deal with crises and get on with life, no matter how tough. In the most recent of these crises, in the wake of the Tsunami tidal wave, we have all heard stories [...]

By Andrew Grant A Reflection on Sept 11 2001 Twin Towers Terrorist Attack by Andrew Grant No One Is An Island … “It has become a time of homecoming and housecleaning,  of  fathers calling their estranged so[...]

By Andrew Grant Is there a set model of a leader? (…especially a leader for a multinational company?) In working with a wide range of companies at all levels I have spent a great deal of time asking the same question and looking for a profile tha[...]

By Andrew Grant THE REAL CHALLENGE … The latest topic for many conferences at the moment is e- commerce. Like with most changes in the workplace, the greatest challenge may not be the introduction of the system (hardware), but the need for people from the organization to embrace[...]

By Andrew Grant and Gaia Grant But how far can you go?? Assessing and managing risk Gaia and Andrew Grant, Directors of Tirian, provide a personal perspective on risk management whilst on holidays in the USA Rocky Mountains, USA With a 20+ hour plane trip from our ho[...]

By Andrew Grant Last week I was 'scalped'- literally. While surfing at my favorite location in Bali I was ambushed by a 2 meter wave from behind which threw me onto a treacherous coral reef in front. With a split second lapse in concentration, my adversaries overwhelmed me and I collided with [...]

Change Management Just Doesn’t Work By Robin Speculand - Bridges Consultancy International 10%. That is the percentage of strategies that are successfully implemented. Take a moment to reflect on what that means to businesses. The time and money spent by leaders hiring consultants, analyzi[...]

By Gaia Grant Gaia and Andrew Grant, Directors of Tirian, provide a personal perspective on risk management from their home and office compound in Jimbaran, Bali. On Oct 1 at 7:50pm suicide bombers attacked a row of family restaurants on the beach barely [...]

Strategic management is far from complex, difficult or mysterious. What is a mystery is why so many Australian managers fail to do it.

By Andrew Grant Individuals vs teams: how they stack up Have you ever noticed during elections much of the campaigning in many different countries around the world has focused on the charisma of individual leaders or the persona related to the family name rather than the effe[...]

By Gaia Grant Imagine... If you could package creativity in a bottle... what would it look like? If you could hang it on a clothes line... what colour would it be, how would it sit? If creativity was a road... [...]

By Gaia Grant To develop the creative innocence that leads to increased creativity you need to try the following... 1. Have a questioning mind A questioning mind arouses CURIOSITY, and curiosity can foster the desire to make new [...]

By Gaia Grant DIVE, SURVIVE OR THRIVE? Our world has changed dramatically, and we’re just going to have to come to terms with it. We have all known that life would never be quite the same after the September 11 tragedy, but this fact has [...]

By Gaia Grant For the last few years many people have been expressing their desire that life could get back to normal. But what exactly is ‘normal’?! In the past 4000 years only 300 have been free of major wars. Perhaps we will have to come to terms w[...]

By Bruce Alexander We all know two thinking styles are better than one. The engineer and the designer combine well because each provides what the other lacks. Less well understood is the value of one person developing both their rational and their imaginative sides and alternating betwee[...]

By Andrew Grant Knowing the difference makes the difference Last week someone who called himself an “electrician” came to our house. He turned up with very little in the way of tools, and he poked around the house as if he had never seen an electric wire before. Ev[...]

By Andrew Grant I recently stayed at a hotel from a well known international chain in the Middle East. But this particular property appeared to be confused about its mission in life. Rather than focusing on providing quality accommodation, the manag[...]

By Andrew Grant The Implications Of The Bali Bomb: A Personal Reflection During Oct 2002 Bali was in mourning. Our dearly loved adopted island home suffered from a senseless and brutal attack. The peace-loving local people who have generously welcomed in s[...]

By Andrew Grant EXPLORE - How much damage can a few individuals do? Recently in Indonesia, a country of 200 million people, a few hundred angry demonstrators and a few cameras led to $1.2 billion worth of damage in lost revenue in terms of tourism sal[...]

By Andrew Grant and Craig Marshal The USA has some of the best golfers in the world. But despite the fact that they can boast more individual players in the top 10 than any other country, for many years they failed to win the Ryder Cup Golf Tournament, a team sport. Rather, the Eu[...]