"To be most helpful a metaphor should be neither too far from nor too close to the thing being described. For example, if we say, "an organization is like a paper clip," this metaphor may be too abstract and distant to be helpful (although one could try!). However, if we pick something too close--"an organization is like an accounting department" or "an organization is like an assembly plant'-we are almost being tautological ("an organization is like an organization"). These metaphors are not "partial enough"; there are too many traits in common for them to spur creative thinking."
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