Lara Lee #BIF8 Summit: Digging for the Future

by Saul Kaplan

Editor’s note: This is the fourth post in a series of BIF Summit storyteller videos, curated by the Business Innovation Factory (BIF).

Lara Lee speaks Mandarin, rides a Harley, and has three Ivy League degrees. But, that’s not the only reason for why she is one of BIF’s most memorable Summit storytellers. Lara is now SVP, customer experience design for Lowe’s and served as Chief Innovation and Operating Officer of Continuum, a global design and innovation consultancy headquartered in Boston. In her work, Lee refuses to rely on superficial readings of big data, focus groups or piles of market research to reposition her clients. Instead, she dives into the basic human motivations that drive behavior.

The secret to translating a brand across cultures, according to Lee, is maintaining its essence while connecting it to fresh populations. Doing so requires a deep understanding of why the brand appeals to a certain audience in the first place. The key to success is not only knowing where or how to dig, but understanding what to do with the understanding once you’ve unearthed it. The human-centered approach is what helps you understand what matters to people, both now and into the future, and allows you to get your innovation successfully into the market.

Lee’s expert advice has landed her the title of Master of Innovation by Businessweek magazine and she continues to be featured in publications such as The New York Times, Forbes, and Harvard Business Review.

Watch Lara Lee’s story here:

And, follow the inspiration at the #BIF9 Summit:

image credit: businessinnovationfactory.com

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Business Innovation Models & BIFSaul Kaplan is the author of The Business Model Innovation Factory. He is the founder and chief catalyst of the Business Innovation Factory (BIF) in Providence, RI, and blogs regularly at It’s Saul Connected. Follow him on Twitter at @skap5.

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