People & Skills

The Universal Challenge of Entrepreneurs and Innovators

Niccolo Machiavelli wrote, “There is nothing more difficult to plan, more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to manage than the creation of a new order of things.” He was talking about politics and government but it applies equally well to any new venture. It is the universal experience of everyone who has ever tried: It’s not going to go exactly like you think it will. You will have to make adjustments.

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My One Word for 2012 – Ingenuity

“Ingenuity," John Kao suggests, is perhaps the most under-represented discussions of innovation, and at the same time, one of the most critical elements for addressing the challenges facing global society today. Many of these, from climate change to economic disparity, are escalating at a staggering pace that requires precisely the acceleration of the innovation process that ingenuity can provide.

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Essential Skills for 21st Century Survival (Part 6)

As Jonah Sachs notes, it’s marketers and designers who are closing this myth gap and infusing our culture with the new stories we can choose about how to live our lives and exist in the world. It’s a powerful message, and one that seems pretty accurate to me. People are disillusioned and lacking trust, and a new story infused with simplicity, aesthetics, beauty and grace will go far.

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Study in Courage: the "Done Manifesto"

"There are three stages of being, claims the 'The Done Manifesto': not knowing, action and completion. The Done Manifesto is simply the most visceral description of "doing the work" of innovation, the emotional/psychological nature of fast prototyping, iterating and working in our field that I've seen anywhere. This is not what just 'creative vision' feels like. This is what it feels like to create. "Create" and "Innovate" share the same root: "ate" which essentially means to consume, to preoccupy and engross.

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To Innovate, You Have to Believe

“There are no atheists in fox holes,” the old saw goes. It’s an assertion that no doubt offends atheists, who I assume hold their beliefs with the same conviction as anyone else. I have a similar observation to make about innovation (one that I don’t think will offend anyone): There are no unbelievers among innovators.

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