Monthly Archives: May 2012

Business Plans Don’t Work


Nine out of ten business start-ups, and one in six business transformations will confirm it. Learning from the failures of the past, it becomes clear that we have been missing a key step in the execution of our business plans. That key step is the discovery of what works. In this three part series, I’ll look at the way in which business plans lead to failure, the way in which business model innovation can help, and the mindset that is needed to succeed in discovering a new path towards business success.

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Dedication to Innovation


Harley-Davidson Perfume— the delicate scent of motor oil and pavement. Fish-flavored water for Fluffy? Wake up with a ready-made carton of pre-brewed Maxwell House coffee. Introducing a new line of microwavable dinners from Colgate! Hungry for breakfast instead? Try Kellogg’s cereal and no-need-to-refrigerate milk with a spoon included. Then, you can ride off into the sunset on your Smith & Wesson mountain bike. Refresh with Frito-Lay Lemonade or Life Savers Soda. A little sore from an afternoon of mountain bike riding? Swallow a couple of Ben-Gay asprin and wash up with Clairol’s “Touch of Yogurt” shampoo. Does it all sound like a world gone mad?

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The Big Innovation Leap

How does a company move from a phase where innovation is more about awareness or curiosity to a phase where innovation is a capability that becomes a key element in the overall strategy? This is a big innovation leap that many corporate innovators struggle with.

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How Gilt Got Built


For anyone who has ever dreamed of starting and growing a business, By Invitation Only: How We Built Gilt and Changed the Way Millions Shop, by Alexis Maybank and Alexandra Wilkis Wilson is an absolute must-read. Their story, from how they met at Harvard Business School to their billion dollar business, is a page turner filled with real world insights and lessons every entrepreneur can profit from.

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10 Steps to a Solid Innovation Foundation


You know how sometimes when you order a product you get this inch-thick instruction manual that you never read, but also how there is sometimes a QuickStart Guide of 5-10 simple steps to get you up and running quickly? Well, Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire is the instruction manual that an increasing number of organizations are ordering for teams to help them with their innovation efforts. But, I’m sure companies could also use an Innovation QuickStart. So, here is one you could use (excerpted in part from my book):

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