Below is a draft copy of the January 2009 edition of Innovative Issues – Innovation Focus’s monthly newsletter.
You can download a PDF version of this here: January 2009 Innovative Issues
Welcome 2009! If you’re like us, you’re excited about the possibilities and hope the New Year brings. We understand it’s hard to keep this message going throughout the year, and even now, only 27 days into 2009. We feel we’re off on the right foot with a historical event – the inauguration of our 44th President – and the inspiring words spoken on this momentous occasion. We hope that this edition of Innovation Issues finds your refreshed and reinvigorated by the New Year.
In This Issue
- New Addition To The Innovation Focus Family
- Don’t Allow Incremental Improvement To Eliminate The Big Bang – GET HUBRIS
- Article Links
- Speeches and Conferences
- Quote of the Month
- Innovative Exercise of the Month
New Addition To The Innovation Focus Family
Matt Hall and his wife Allison welcomed their first child into the world. Aiden Thomas Hall was born on January 11, 2009, weighing in at 7 lbs 6 oz and measuring 19.5 inches. Both mom and dad are doing well and couldn’t be happier. Please join us in celebrating with the family.
Don’t Allow Incremental Improvement To Eliminate The Big Bang – GET HUBRIS
By: Christopher W. Miller, Ph.D. – Founder & CEO – Innovation Focus
Chris Miller argues that companies with lofty goals are often the ones who perform near the top of their class decade after decade. Companies that do this have hubris, and are not afraid to go after the big, game changing innovation. Chris lists nine ways that companies can practice setting and striving for this type of lofty goal.
To read Chris’s article, please visit http://www.innovationfocus.com/GetHubris.asp
Here are some links we recommend:
- Finding Money for Innovation: Develop Those People Skills – This Knowledge @ Wharton article highlights a recent panel titled “Street-Smart Innovation to Align Emerging Technology and Business” held at the University of Pennsylvania. The panel says that, in light of shrinking R&D budgets and economic hardship, researchers should develop people skills to help them fight for the budgets they have. They also highlight potential opportunity areas for revenue and keeping retaining current researchers by keeping them happy.
- Why You Need to Get Really Close to Your Customers in a Recession – This CustomerThink article states that deeply understanding consumers and their needs now, in hard times, and creating products that meet those needs will enhance consumer loyalty. By listening to the consumer and earning their loyalty now, future growth and revenue can be created – even in a recession.
- How Creative Thinking Can Help In The Downturn – Edward de Bono weighs on the economic hardship, stating that creative thinking can help. He states that problems should be looked at as opportunities, that designing your future is key, and that creative thinking in hard times can be done alone and not in the traditional group setting.
- 10 Reasons to Design a Better Corporate Culture – The top 10 lessons learned from the best practitioners of corporate culture are outlined in this Harvard Business School Working Knowledge article. The professors state that recognizing that strong, adaptive cultures can foster innovation, productivity, and a sense of ownership among employees and customers is key to having a strong strategic advantage.
- P&G Spreads Idea Net – This Cincinnati Enquirer article highlights Connect and Develop, P&G’s open innovation effort. It outlines the strategy, investment and goals of the project, as well as future plans.
- How World of Warcraft Promotes Innovation – Wait, what’s this World of Warcraft doing in my innovation? This BusinessWeek article gives examples from the video game senior managers can use to challenge employees to learn and think creatively on their own. These examples can be used to improve employee performance and advancement through experiences and not training programs.
Speeches and Conferences
Sustainable Package Design
January 27-28, 2009 | Sheraton Sand Key | Clearwater Beach, FL
Chris Miller will be presenting at this year’s Sustainable Package Design conference on behalf of Innovation Focus and LIFEbytes OnlineTM on Wednesday, January 28th.
Growth Strategies Seminar X – Save The Date!
Our 10th Annual Growth Strategies Seminar (GSS) will take place on Thursday, March 26th at The Barn in Lancaster, PA. This year’s theme will be: Innovation Creativity. Agenda, speakers, and more specific information to follow. To register, please contact Kevin Ringer at 717-394-2500 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To view the official flier, please visit: http://www.innovationfocus.com/GSSX-SaveTheDate.asp.
Quote of the Month
“The primary purpose of leadership is to give your customers the ability to do what they can’t do, but would have wanted to do if only they knew they could have done it.” -Daniel Burrus – Futurist
What is your reaction to this quote? How does this month’s quote affect you? Email your comments and reactions to us and your response may be published in next month’s issue.
Innovative Exercise of the Month
Think of a problem or task you have that needs to be solved. Write it down on the top of a piece of paper. Now, think of your favorite song. It can be your favorite song of all-time or your favorite song right now. If it’s available, play it. Think about why this song is your favorite. Is it the lyrics? The music? The memories you’ve associated with it? Write these things down as you think of them on your piece of paper. Let your mind wander while you’re thinking of these things. Write down where your mind wanders to. Once the song is over, go back and reread your task. Then read over what you wrote down. What kind of ideas do these thoughts inspire? How can these ideas help you solve your problem?
Did this exercise help you solve your task? Or did you just like looking at your problem differently? Let us know! Email your thoughts or success stories to us. We’d love to hear them!