Monthly Archives: January 2011

What is your Blackpool Tower?

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If you can identify your unique selling point, you’re in a position to stamp your place on the map and even make inroads into enemy territory. If you don’t have anything that differentiates you from others you’re in trouble. For the Brits among you, imagine that I showed you photographs of the scenery at Brighton, Bognor Regis and Bournemouth and ...

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Can Your Friends Make You More Innovative?

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Social influence is important to innovation. One of the critical steps in innovating is getting our great new ideas to spread – and this is often an issue of social influence. Here is an excellent short talk from network researcher Sinan Aral about how to measure social influence: Sinan Aral: Social Contagion from PopTech on Vimeo. Here are some of ...

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36 Awesome Quotes on Time

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The biggest excuse people make about why they can’t innovate is the lack of time. Really? “Time is a created thing. To say ‘I don’t have time’ is to say ‘I don’t want to.'” – Lao Tzu “To achieve great things, two things are needed; a plan, and not quite enough time.” – Leonard Bernstein “Don’t say you don’t have ...

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Fusing Evaluation with Crowdsourcing to Accelerate Innovation

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Without an evaluation process, ideas, and innovation programs can fall of a cliff. What makes ideas special relative to other user generated content is that ideas change things. Ideas put in motion a series of conversations and decisions about what the future will look like, and how you’ll achieve it. For organizations, the broadening of the innovation effort brings employees ...

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Freud’s Surging Popularity in China

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China’s economy is set to become as big as that of the United States, by some estimates as early as 2027. Too often though, commentators speak about Chinese consumers like they’re some kind of monolith, somehow different from other customers. Yes, they represent truly enormous collective purchasing power, both now and increasingly in the future. But evidence is building that ...

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Don't Brand Your Innovation Program

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Companies should avoid the temptation to brand their innovation program. While it seems like a great way to bring excitement and focus to innovation, branding these programs does just the opposite. Employees become cynical, they wait it out, and they go right back to doing what they were doing before. I liken this advice to that from Edwards Deming on ...

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Selling Innovation Change

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I had the opportunity to interview Brett Clay, author of “Selling Change” recently. Here is text of the interview: 1. Why is innovation so important for organizations? In today’s era of global suppliers and Internet-empowered buyers, companies’ products are under constant pricing pressure. As margins become squeezed, companies must innovate to improve efficiencies and develop higher value products and services. ...

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Creative Problem Solving (CPS) Basics

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Creative ideas do not suddenly appear in people’s minds for no apparent reason. Rather, they are the result of trying to solve a specific problem or to achieve a particular goal. Albert Einstein’s theories of relativity were not sudden inspirations. Rather they were the result of a huge amount of mental problem solving trying to close a discrepancy between the ...

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