10 Innovation Lessons I've Learned

What should innovation leaders and intrapreneurs know about innovation projects and new ventures? I have had the pleasure of working with such people for many years and I begin to see a pattern that I have summarized into 10 lessons for innovation leaders and intrapreneurs: 1. Know that innovation and intrapreneurship is about teams build a team of people with ...

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Abuse Customers at Your Own Risk

Long time readers of this blog will know that my love for most airlines in the US has never taken off. In fact, I’m constantly amazed by the continued indifference many of them have towards the consumer, not to mention the consumer’s resigned acceptance of the service they’re offered. Not everybody is content to lie down and be trampled on ...

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Will User Reputation Scores Change Twitter?

Item #1: “As the spam annoyance factor on Twitter goes up, the credentials/relevance go down meaning less user value. @biz huge deal!” – Kim Patrick Kobza, President & CEO of Neighborhood America Item #2: “Twitter Search will also get a ‘reputation’ ranking system soon, Jayaram told me. When you do a search on a ‘trending’ topic – a topic that ...

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Part 2 – Nature's 10 Simple Rules

Here’s the second half of my thoughts on Nature’s 10 Simple Rules for Business Survival (read Part 1 here). Send me your views on this list. Also, make sure you pin it up on your wall, your company’s survival may depend on it. Nature’s # 6. Integrate metrics. Nature brings the right information to the right place at the right ...

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Two Steps to Innovation

Innovation is a company’s future. Don’t believe me, ask the stock market. “Today, some 70% of the valuation of the top 500 S&P companies is made up of intangible capital, value not on the balance sheet,” according to Mark Van Clieaf, CEO of MVC International. Future growth from innovation is a significant contributor to intangible capital. What to do? Well ...

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Toyota and Innovation by Design

Scion Exile Concept Sketch by Matthew E May I’m fortunate enough to count car designer Kevin Hunter, president of Toyota’s CALTY Design Research, among my board of muses. CALTY (California+Toyota) is one of Toyota’s most influential design centers, located in Newport Beach, CA. CALTY is involved in nearly all of Toyota’s major vehicle design programs. According to Kevin, Toyota wants ...

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Is Operational Excellence the Enemy?

OK I admit it. I’ve grown frustrated by the fact that a capability or insight that proves valuable to an organization – operational excellence – is also such a big impediment to innovation. It’s strange that something that in some regards is so good for an organization can also be so detrimental as well. How, you might ask, is a ...

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Why Edison Was Wrong

The other night I had an enlightening conversation with Alph Bingham, the co-founder of InnoCentive from Eli Lilly. This guy is fascinating! Alph suggested that many people do not like open innovation (external crowd sourcing) because it runs counter to a widely held belief of the R&D community. Researchers often throw around the Edison quote, “I have not failed 700 ...

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When Not to Use Focus Groups

I’m still a fan of focus groups. Yes, they’re mostly qualitative, and at best you’re capturing information from a handful of customers that may or may not be representative. But the richness of information, the multi-dimensional and behavioral feedback is unique to that environment. And with some products (trying on jackets, or testing perfume for example) sending an email survey ...

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Value versus Price

When 2008 came to a close, Nestle looked up and saw that revenues were up ten percent, fueled in part by higher prices. Procter & Gamble reports that its premium products are doing just fine, despite being priced 60 percent (Tide Total Care) or 70 percent (Clairol’s Perfect 10) higher than its base brands. Pepsi is stepping up support of ...

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