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Analogy Driven Innovation

photo credit: Peter Emmett Here is another tip from our “Little Book of BIG Innovation Ideas.” As adults, when we try to solve a problem, we often ask, “What does this mean?” We try to pull the answer from our knowledge bank, just like finding the solution in an encyclopedia. Solve the problem the way […]

Design Emotion First

Here’s a useful innovation tip. Designworks, a division of BMW, designs cars and other products such as cell phones, computers, and tractors. Their design process is particularly interesting. Instead of starting with functions and features, they start with emotion. Designers first meet with company executives, employees, and customers in order to capture the emotion that […]

Use Campaign Driven Innovation

If you have creative people in your organization (and trust me, you do), then you may find yourself with TOO MANY solutions. This is why suggestion boxes (physical or online) do not work. Therefore you need to move from suggestion boxes (give us your solution to everything) to a campaign-driven approach (we want your best […]

Build It, Try It, Fix It

Here is another “innovation tip.” This one is simple, yet incredibly powerful. In fact, I am using this concept right now with this website. But more on that later. One of the biggest barriers to success is analysis paralysis. It is the belief that studying the marketplace infinitum will yield better results. This is just […]

Make Everyone Accountable

Here’s another tip from my Little Book of BIG Innovation Ideas (this book was replaced by Best Practices are Stupid)… Because a few individuals at the top cannot possibly plan all of a company’s activities, give employees a set of rights, responsibilities and rewards that make them accountable for their own actions. Example: Koch Industries […]

Phrase Concerns as Opportunities

One of the most simple, yet most powerful approaches for increasing your creativity potential is to phrase concerns as opportunities.  When brainstorming, inevitably someone will say, “We don’t have enough time to implement this idea,” or “We don’t have enough money.”  When you say this, you are stating it as fact.  Instead, state this concern […]

Move From Consensus to Alignment

Here is another tip from my new “innovation tips” book. There are two extremes of innovation culture. One is “the right of infinite appeal.” This is a culture where anyone, anytime, has the right to veto any suggestions, bring the process back to the starting point. In this environment, very little gets done, and innovation […]

Ethos, Pathos, Logos

Today’s blog entry is from my new “innovation tips book.” But this is also an extremely useful concept in every day life. In fact, anyone who knows me eventually hears me say: “ethos, pathos, logos.” Selling is fundamental to your success – personally and professionally. Ethos, pathos, logos is a simple recipe for selling anything […]

Move Your Innovators to the Front-Line

I am writing a new book on innovation that contains over 100 tips for turning creativity into profitability. Every tip is bite sized (typically one page in length) in order to be easily digestible. Each week I will post at least one tip from the book. Here is tip #1 from the book: Move Your […]

Speaker's Corner Brainstorming

Today’s blog entry is a goal-free approach to brainstorming. Brainstorming sessions are useful. The standard approach is one person up front facilitating, while the conversation is single-threaded. To overcome this limitation, some groups use breakout sessions. The problem with this is that they do not allow for cross-pollination of ideas. To combat these problems, I […]