Innovate

Thinking Something Different

A quote that I often reference is from Albert Szent-Györgyi who said, “Discovery consists of looking at the same thing as everyone else and thinking something different.” In a recent Harvard Business Review article, Tim Evans cited Southwest Airlines as having been a disruptive force in the airline industry because of co-founder Herb Kelleher’s ability to “think something different.”

3 Things to Simplify For Better Results

Here are some ideas on how you can simplify: People sometimes ask me how they can improve their presentations. One of my suggestions is to cut their presentation by 1/3. Editing down almost always improves the quality of your message. Caryn Marooney, Head of Technology Communications at Facebook, says, “If your message isn’t unbelievably simple, you’re missing the point,” she says.

Simplify. FOCUS. Innovate.

Simplify. FOCUS. Innovate.

I just read a Fast Company article (see link below) on the power of having “Anti-Resolutions” for the New Year. Those who are familiar with my work know that I am a big believer in the power of saying “no” to create opportunity, and that those who say “no” to, as Warren Buttett suggests, “almost everything” are ultimately more successful because they have clarity and focus on what matters most.

Signs of Disruption Continue In Healthcare

In the wake of the just announced deal for CVS to buy Aetna, UnitedHealth has news that is more evidence of significant, and possibly disruptive, changes to the traditional healthcare model. The New York Times reports that “UnitedHealth’s $4.9 billion takeover of a physician group from DaVita may not be as big as CVS’s deal for Aetna. But it highlights how fast traditional boundaries in health care are dissolving.

Discipline, Process, Creativity, Innovation

Discipline, Process, Creativity, and Innovation

Each fall, my daughter Cate and I drive from Nashville to Memphis for the weekend. The focal point of the trip is to see a Memphis Grizzlies basketball game. But the basketball game itself is really only one aspect of a myriad of experiences. Cate and I have a set of “jobs to be done” on that wonderful father-daughter weekend, and we seek out the companies that can successfully do those jobs. The concept of jobs to be done gives us a way of looking at the real reasons that people buy things or experiences.

Jobs To Be Done

Each fall, my daughter Cate and I drive from Nashville to Memphis for the weekend. The focal point of the trip is to see a Memphis Grizzlies basketball game. But the basketball game itself is really only one aspect of a myriad of experiences. Cate and I have a set of “jobs to be done” on that wonderful father-daughter weekend, and we seek out the companies that can successfully do those jobs. The concept of jobs to be done gives us a way of looking at the real reasons that people buy things or experiences.

Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas

20 Minutes? An Hour? Three Hours?

Recently I did a presentation for a very sophisticated business audience. The client specified that my session be 20 minutes. This was in a general session in what we used to call (and still usually do) a “keynote” slot. All of their general session speakers went 20 minutes. When asked why, the answer was simple: “We hire excellent speakers. Many of them catapulted to national and even worldwide popularity based on their short TED Talks.

I Need New Ideas. I’m Going to Barcelona.

I Need New Ideas. I’m Going to Barcelona.

Experience and observation have taught me that almost all innovation is adaptive innovation. You see a great idea “over there” that you bring back to your organization, adapt it to your arena, and then use to drive performance, success, and maybe even disruption. Barcelona and New York are world-leading centers of innovation. I want to see and learn in these innovative environments from the companies and organizations that are on the leading edge of transformative disruption and innovation.

I Knew I’d Disagree With It. That’s Why I Read It

I Knew I’d Disagree With It. That’s Why I Read It

To me, it would be the height of intellectual stagnation to follow only the websites, news sources, books, magazines, radio stations, podcasts, or political commentators that I know in advance I’ll agree with. People have fallen into the intellectual trap of confirmation bias to the point that they will only believe the “news” that they want to be true. Then they repost it on whatever echo chamber is their social media of choice, for the people who already think exactly like they do.