Author Archives: Matthew E May

The Neuroscience of Leadership

A few months ago I introduced you to the work of Dr. Jeffrey Schwartz, a research neuropsychiatrist at the University of California Los Angeles School of Medicine, in a column called The Neuroscience of Change, Or How to Reset Your Brain. The challenge in business, especially if you’re a business owner or leader responsible for change, is helping others make that change, helping people “reset” their minds.

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Bodystorm Over Brainstorm

Stuck In A Brainstorm? Try A Bodystorm Instead “Another brainstorming session…yay.” It’s not always voiced, but I’ve conducted enough creativity sessions to know that this is the exact thought and sentiment held by at least a few participants in every brainstorm session. Let’s face it, we’re jaded.

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Innovation and the Role of Genchi Genbutsu

What do Cornflakes, the microwave oven, Post-Its, the Walkman, Teflon, Scotchgard, Aspartame, Rogaine, Kitty Litter, Ivory soap, Velcro, Rayon, and Skateboards all have in common? None were planned! All were unexpected treasures found by observant individuals paying attention to what was right in front of them. While trying to get one thing right…the thing turned left, and they followed it. ...

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Reflection – The Art of Hansei

Around this time of year, most of us, and our businesses, tend to slow down just a bit from the normal dawn-to-dusk mad dash. We smile a bit more. We wave people in before us in traffic, and let others with less in their shopping carts go first in the grocery store. And we reflect. When I was working with ...

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7 Core Qualities of an Innovator

One of the things that troubles me is that all too often we sell ourselves short, and it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Example: often when I give a speech or workshop, I ask people to raise their hands if they consider themselves a problem-solver. Nearly every hand goes up. Makes sense…you probably solved 25 problems (most of them tiny) before ...

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Power of Incomplete Microstories

If you follow this blog you know I’m a huge fan of “I Wrote this for You.” (Iain Thomas contributed a piece for this blog here.) Here’s Iain talking at a recent TEDx event is South Africa. It’s a heartwarming story about the power of story. It’s a must-see, if you want to change the world. And even if you ...

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My Own Tiger's Tale

“Tiger-gate” is the media focus of the week. Looks like another one bites the moral dust. Another checkmark in the “how the mighty fall” column. A whole new meaning to Nike’s tag line. Skootch over, Kobe. All that. Be that as it may, I have my own Tiger’s tale, and it’s one that has stayed with me for the entire ...

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Setting a Big, Hairy, Audacious Goal (BHAG)

by Matthew E May Over at the American Express Open Forum Idea Hub, I’ve posted “How to Set a BHAG.” A BHAG is a Big, Hairy Audacious Goal, and it’s a term coined by Jim Collins and Jerry Porras. I’m constantly asked about the challenge of complacency — you know, things are going well, but there’s a comfort setting in, ...

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Big Box, Little Box

Have you seen it? Best Buy 2.0, I mean. They’re going up everywhere. They’re less than 10% of the normal 40,000 square foot big box Best Buy. I’m not talking about the store-within-the-store structure they use for selling cellphones. I’m talking about stand-alones of the same flavor going up in malls and downtown areas. Best Buy Mobile. Little boxes, just ...

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Can entrepreneurs lead us out of this crisis?

I agree with Tom Hayes and Michael Malone in their belief that “Entrepreneurs Can Lead Us Out of the Crisis.” Why? Because entrepreneurs have the agility, flexibility, and grit to make change happen. Innovation is the chief tool of the entrepreneur. Hayes and Malone outline about a half dozen ways the new administration can help them. And those ways are ...

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