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Analytics And Info Overload: Insights From eBay, Adobe, And Oracle by Adrian Ott

Are analytics a prescription for information overload? Three top Silicon Valley tech titans share views on what’s new in e-commerce and retailing.

Last week I moderated a panel for FountainBlue which explored the latest trends and opportunities in e-Commerce and Retail Analytics. This panel included three distinguished executive panelists from Oracle, eBay and Adobe, namely:

 

How Technology Makes Us Smarter by Greg Satell

Are we getting smarter or dumber?  That’s a question that goes back at least 2000 years to the time of Plato.

 

Why you need to break out of your network to innovate by Jorge Barba

Yesterday @JuhaLipponen shared his post on how gathering people from diverse backgrounds to brainstorm breeds new and fresh insights. This idea of bringing in outsiders to shake things up isn’t new, but it’s definitely one that you don’t find being practiced more widely.

 

“Service design” is what exactly? By John W Lewis

The term “service design” seems to have been cropping up in a variety of contexts recently. This sounds interesting, possibly useful and, perhaps even, ground breaking.

However, based on initial investigation, I am non-plussed and increasingly sceptical.

 

The Challenges of Real Change Required by Innovation Consultants by Paul Hobcraft

Recently I was reminded of an article by Daniel Krauss, writing on the Forrester blog site (http://blogs.forrester.com) about the “Path to Revolution In Management Consulting” which lead me to reply to his question of “what constitutes a management consulting firm 2.0?”

 

Ten Good Reasons Not To Delegate by Jesse Lyn Stoner

A few years ago, Frank, a senior leader, asked if I could run a training program to teach his people how to delegate better. When I asked him what problem the program would solve, he shared his frustration.

 

The big can, the small do by The Economist via @ralph_ohr

 

MIKE KONCZAL has written an interesting post considering whether large corporate oligopolists or small fry are more likely to do the heavy lifting of innovation. He quotes Arpit Gupta, who says:

 

Designing our library future: be involved or be forgotten by Zaana Howard

What is the future of the Library? What is the future of the Librarian? These are questions we hear and see discussed ad nauseum at conferences, in blogs, in our tea rooms. In reality the ‘future library’ has already snuck in the back door. We were just too focused on the discussion to notice.

 

Pixie Dust & The Mountain of Mediocrity by Hugh  Macleod

We’re always searching for that secret formula, that magic pixie dust to sprinkle over our products, services, books, causes, brands, blogs to bring them to life and make them Super Successful. Most marketing-related buzzwords gain traction by promising pixie dust results if applied to whatever it is we make, do, sell. “Add more Social!”. “Just need a Viral Video!” “It’s about the Storytelling!”. “Be Authentic!”

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Creating ‘Places of Possibility’ by Rotman via Ralph-Ohr

With the analogue generation still in control of the organization and the digital generation performing the daily work, clashes are imminent and inevitable.

 

Make Little Bets for Innovation Success by Tim kastelle

To succeed at innovation, you need to be making a lot of little bets. What are little bets? According to Peter Sims in his excellent book called Little Bets, they are:

 

Caffeine: It Undermines Performance on Collaborative Tasks for Men, Enhances It For Women by Bob Sutton

I can’t believe that I missed this study reported by BPS research last January.  Way cool.  It compared the performance of men working in pairs to women working pairs.

 

Three Ways to Get the Most Out of Each Moment by Jesse Lyn Stoner

Learn from the past, plan for the future, and live in the present.

How can you have a vision and live in the present? Don’t you live for the future?

 

Rockstart Studios knows how to innovate by Jorge Barba

Yesterday I wrote about how innovation requires courage. It takes guts and vision to do something that is so remarkable, that it changes everything. Here then, is a great example.

 

The Surplus Society by Luke Williams

If you’re seeking disruptive innovation with a team—or even if you’re doing it alone—you need to identify the assumptions that seem to influence the way insiders (and often outsiders) think about your industry, segment, or category.

 

Going flat? Creating the freedom to succeed by Dov Seidman via Arie Goldshlager

What if leaders of flat organisations invested as much effort in inspiring people to build cultures without “boxes” by constructing a new mindset for the behaviour they want as they invest in deconstructing the vertical and functional restraints that limit space in hierarchical structures?

 

Design Thinking, Business Transformation And The Creative Enterprise. By Idris Mootee

It is time to take a look at the report card of our design for business organization, management and strategy. After half a century of quality movement, brand management, marketing and catefory management, globalization, customer service automation and organizational design fine-tuning, we should have a pretty good of idea of what is working and what is not.

 

What Are You Telling the World? By Kare Anderson

How do others perceive you? How well do you anticipate another person’s discomfort before the person freezes up and becomes paralyzed, withdrawn, or even destructive in a situation.

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The Problem With Communications Planning by Greg Satell

What is communications planning? I don’t mean to be cheeky, but I would assume that it should have something to do with communicating.

 

How ‘Sticky’ is Design Thinking? By will novosedlik via @ralph_ohr

On its way to meme-hood, even before it has had a chance to gain purchase in the minds of the people who need it most, the term ‘design thinking’ is showing signs of mutational stress that threaten a common understanding of its value and validity.

 

Employees don’t always share well with others, says new paper exposing “knowledge hiding.” By Rotman via @ariegoldshlager

Why isn’t knowledge transfer happening more often in companies spending money on it?

Maybe it’s because their staff don’t always want to share.

 

The Problem with Fitting New Ideas Into Old Business Models by Tim Kastelle

Malcolm Gladwell retells the story of the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center in the latest issue of the New Yorker (it’s readable behind a paywall here). The story of PARC is fascinating, and Gladwell provides a nice twist to it. One of the main threads in the story concerns their invention of the laser printer.

 

The Beginning of a New Discipline by Idris Mootee

Prague is mystical with a mix of medieval, Renaissance, and Art Nouveau architecture and the design scene is slowly taking shape. You still see traces of history of what communism had done to the city even after these buildings are completely restored. It is where Renaissance meets neo-Gothic and the baroque structures from the 18th centuries

 

Creating Infectious Action – Innovation Uncensored by Jennifer Aaker

“Slideshare”

 

The Different Taxonomies of Open Innovation by OIC editor

Professor Henry Chesbrough speaks with Gary Hamel, Visiting Professor of Strategic and International Management at the London Business School and Director of the Management Lab.

 

Can You Be Happy at Work? Should You Be? By Liz Alt Kislik

Consider these scenarios, each from a different organization, and the unfortunate, but logical, conclusions that can be drawn from each one:

 

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How to Turn Anything from Adequate to Amazing by Bill Taylor via @ralph_ohr

If there’s one message I have stressed more than any other over the last few years, it is that it is not good enough to be pretty good at everything. The most successful companies, products, and brands have figured out how to become the most of something — not just adequate, but downright amazing.

 

Stop asking “why” by Dan Rockwell

I think you ask “why” too much and “what” too little. Asking “why” is a backward-facing activity that examines the past searching for excuses and someone to blame.  Asking “why” may be useful on the psychologist couch or in science class but it’s not as useful for leaders.

 

Trust Me, I’m a Scientist by Daniel T. Willingham

A friend of mine has long held that a vaccination his son received as an infant triggered his child’s autism. He clings to this belief despite a string of scientific studies that show no link between autism and vaccines.

 

Do you love creating? By Jorge Barba

Last week I asked if it’s possible to innovate without loving what you do. There were plenty of comments and the reactions were mixed. Most think it’s not possible because people have to be passionate about the work they do. I’m not going to argue with that.

 

Building a CEx that Creates Value for Customers… And for Companies by Graham Hill

Too many customer experiences are created just for the benefit of companies. Customer are either a target or an afterthought. Many customer experience practitioners don’t see the 900lb Gorilla in the room; the most important touch-points are not about marketing, sales or service, but about the weeks, months, even years of product usage

The Art of Momentum: Why Your Ideas Need Speed by Jocelyn K. Glei

In his wonderful book Musicophilia, neurologist Oliver Sacks describes Clive Wearing, a musician and musicologist whose memory was erased almost entirely after a severe brain infection.

Executive pay: fixing the game by Index B

On both sides of the Atlantic, there is widespread disquiet about bankers’ bonuses. Of course, this concern is closely tied up with the financial crisis and the belief that were those bankers in just about any other field they would have been allowed to fail rather than propped up by the state.

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How Open Innovation & Modularity Accelerate Innovation at PsionTeklogix by Andrea Meyer via @ralph_ohr

Point: Use open innovation and modularity to identify new product/service needs and accelerate your pace of innovation

 

Don’t look for examples, be the example by Jorge Barba

I have a client who has (so far) the only SaaS payroll management solution for small businesses in Mexico. This is both great and bad. Let me explain…

In our initial meeting I was told they used Workday as an example to follow. Their reasoning was that Workday has a very simple to use and intuitive interface, plus they are the ‘leaders’ in the field. The studied them rigorously and brought the same principles over to their solution.

 

The No. 1 Reason Companies Don’t Innovate by Deborah Mills Scofield

This saga of Congress, the White House and the budget is horrendous.  If they can’t agree on 1% of the budget for six months, can they really create a budget to cut the deficit and debt for a year?

You Have the Power to Choose Prosperity by Umair Haque

Our forebears struggled, toiled, fought, and sweated for generations to create a future better, wealthier, stronger than their own. The gifts they handed down — democracy, markets, justice, opportunity, reason, equality, liberty — are the fundamental institutions — the building blocks — of enduring, authentic prosperity.

What Do You Do with Criticism? By Robyn McMaster

 

During a state conference, when I began working with Ellen Weber, someone asked a question that I perceived totally “put down” brain research. Ever experience that?

 

Father as leader by John Maeda

I have regular open office hours for students, staff, and faculty — a practice that is often suggested for college presidents and for other leaders — the so-called “open door” philosophy. You learn all kinds of things about your organization when you do so.

 

Taking it home, part 2: passion, permission and prototyping by

Tom Maiorana via @ariegoldshlager

We just wrapped up a Design Thinking Bootcamp with 37 executives from around the globe. A few came from start-ups, others from large corporations. We even had a few folks from governmental agencies. Despite the difference in organizational backgrounds, one thing was on almost all of our participants’ minds: “How do we make design thinking work back home?”

 

What’s Political about Human Brains? By Ellen Weber

Have you ever wondered how political leaders’ brains work for or against ethics, reason and emotion?

News of political infighting, stalemates, accusations and posturing flood us daily.  We watch  opportunities for greatness fade, when political leaders  fail to grow emotional and rational skills to achieve what they campaigned for. But do you know why  brain operations differ between ethical and self-serving  public leaders?

 

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The Importance of Organizational Design and Structure by Gill Corkindale via @ralph_ohr

One of the wonderful things about being a coach is that I meet hundreds of executives who freely share their business and leadership challenges with me. As well as helping me understand how hard it is to run an organization, they show me how they are managing to adapt — or not — to changing organizational structures.

 

Invention without Commercialization = Extinction, not Innovation by Deb Mills-Scofield

My job at Bell Labs was to invent and create.  We dreamed up all sorts of wonderful solutions to problems that did and didn’t exist.  But how did we learn about these problems? Some we just thought up.  Some came from AT&T corporate product management & marketing. But few came from seeing customers firsthand, so we ended up using ourselves as ‘examples’ – not good.  AT&T corporate product managers and marketers were supposed to commercialize our inventions; to decide if it met the market needs or if there even was a need.  

 

Innovate like a Kindergartner by Peter Merholz

One of my most popular posts for hbr.org is “Why Design Thinking Won’t Save You“. It clearly struck a chord, as well over a year since it was posted, it still regularly gets picked up in the Twittersphere.

 

The Future of Design Consulting: 4 Business Models to Consider by design sojourn via @vanetuit

Over the recent Chinese New Year holidays, I met a very well traveled designer. We were discussing the pitfalls of running a design consultancy, and that conversation eventually led to consulting business models.

 

Are You Different on Purpose? By Bill Taylor

Roy Spence, one of the toughest-minded business thinkers I know, is a cofounder of GSD&M, the legendary advertising agency based in Austin, Texas. In a provocative and saucy book, It’s Not What You Sell, It’s What You Stand For

 

Welcome to the Age of Dilemma by Umair Haque

Another week, another potentially destabilizing global mini-crisis. This time, it’s (yet another) global food crisis: food prices are set to skyrocket and the FAO’s food price index is already spiking. It’s likely to ignite even more political instability and social turmoil — in layman’s terms, that’s riots, panics, protests, and violence.

 

HOW TO: Build & Maintain A Talent Community by Heather R. Huhman

A talent community is not a list of candidates on a web page or in a spreadsheet; it is an environment consisting of people who can share ideas for the purpose of career networking or social recruiting of candidates.

 

Because it is time you take Customer Service seriously.. by Wim Rampen

Despite the economic crisis, the rise of the “Social Customer” and the popularity of Customer engagement strategies through Social Media, I sometimes get the feeling that managers in Customer Services put in a lot more effort to ensure the company does not get bad press, or negative “buzz” in stead of providing a better then expected Customer service experience. We know companies do not always take Customer service seriously. I think though many managers of Customer Services should start taking their discipline a lot more serious than they are doing today..

 

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Reinventing Management – A Process by Deb Mills-Scofield

As we look around us, 20th C regimes, institutions and businesses are failing.  It seems everyone is writing a book on management needs to change.

 

Unlocking your creativity to fulfill your personal vision by  Jorge Barba

I love this! Talk about freeing your mind, here’s a high powered conversation you don’t want to miss…

 

Building Creative Collaboration by Greg Satell

Soft power, noted Joseph Nye, is the power to get what you want without coercion.  That’s a good kind of power to have, but hard to define.  Nye argues that it is a combination of lots of things, like economic success, technological prowess, good governance, lack of corruption, etc.

 

A lesson about (de)motivating employees by Dan Ariely via @ralph_ohr

A few months ago an ex-student of mine, who was at the time working for a big software company, contacted me and asked me to meet with her and her team later in the summer.

 

Taking Work-Life Balance By The Horns by Judy Martin

A colleague recently told me she was suffering from anxiety about heading back to work, after a week off.  In gory detail, she described a nightmare in which her manager littered her office with big black hairy spiders. Pretty much how she feels at work, she effused.  “The creepy crawlies never seem to go away.”

 

I am a Knowledge Worker and a Serendipity Hippie by Riitta Raesmaa

Last weekend I attended Professor Esa Saarinen’s seminar, and as always I was touched and inspired by his thinking. Few days earlier futurist Jarno M. Koponen wrote a beautiful blog post about creative future thinking. Both of these gentlemen touched on a question I’ve been thinking lately:

What metrics should we apply for open innovation? By Stefan Lindegaard

I hear more and more requests on how to apply metrics to open innovation.

Personally, I do not really believe in metrics. The innovation community (companies, consultants and academics) has tried this for the last 20 years on innovation in general, but no success.

 

The Next Time You Pick Up The Phone To Call A Customer Service Agent You Might End Up Talking To An Inmate In Tijar, India by  Idris Mootee

Global customer servicing outsourcing is touching us everyday and sometimes you don’t know who you’re talking to on the phone or online when you call your service provider.

 

Is Open Innovation Sustainable? Video Interview with Henry Chesbrough

Professor Henry Chesbrough speaks with Gary Hamel,Visiting Professor of Strategic and International Management at the London Business School and Director of the Management Lab.

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The Art of Integrative Thinking by Roger Martin and Hilary Austen via @ralph_ohr

Modern leadership needs integrative thinking. Integrative thinkers

embrace complexity, tolerate uncertainty, and manage tension in searching for

creative solutions to problems.

 

Adam Smith Explains the Network Economy by Tim Kastelle

The economy is a network. To understand how new ideas integrate into it, we first have to understand how interconnected and interdependent it is. Here is a passage from The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith making this point (from Adam Gopnik’s good review of Smith’s work in The New Yorker):

 

Working With Strangers to Solve Open Innovation Challenges: What’s It Like? By Stefan Lindegaard

In writing and making public presentations about open innovation, I often remind people that while process is important, in the end success comes down to having people with the right mindset and skills. So much can be accomplished when a good team comes together, even when that team consists of experts in various disciplines around the globe who are total strangers to one another.

 

It’s Time for Some New Habits–the Year of the Meaning Organization by Umair Haque

This time of year we tend to subject ourselves to tough review. We zero in on our practices and tendencies and resolve to take up new, positive habits–and, more importantly, to break the bad. It can be a productive exercise if approached with a clear eye and dedicated follow-through. My question: why don’t we subject our institutions to the same ritualistic rigor?

Surprise yourself by Jorge Barba

We all have different likes and dislikes. That’s just how it is. A personal example how is I like video games and although I do have preferences for shooters, sports and espionage; I’ll give any genre a shot.

 

We Need To Change The Way We Use Trash, One Imagination At A Time. It Is About Behavior As Much As Economics. By Idris Mootee

We all love shopping and some do more than other. We love to buy shoes, clothes, electronic gadgets, toys and cameras. We all know we can’t continue on like this, the stuff we buy today is way worse than what we were buying a decade ago, everything has tons of electronic components inside which is really hard to recycle.

 

Team Guidelines From A New Boss: How Can He Make Sure People Live Them? By Bob Sutton

I got a fascinating note from an employee of a big company about the “team norms” that were articulated by his new boss.  I think they are great, but have a crucial question about them. Here they are: 

 

Happy or Valuable New Year? By Deb Mills-Scofield

21st century capitalism is shifting focus from making money to making meaning (ends vs. means, trailing indicators v leading indicators). This is good and necessary.  However, ‘happiness’ is starting to dominate discussions about 21st C capitalism, even in governments’ measures of economic growth

 

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Designing for the Future Customer With Foresight Thinking by Bernhard Schindlholzer

Many organizations make the common mistake of designing a future product or service for today’s user. The user today will not be the same user you want to target in two or three product cycles.

Innovators Go It Alone by Ndubuisi Ekekwe Via @ariegoldshlager 

For a long time, Ford, Chrysler, and GM followed the same strategy: they built big gas-guzzlers. Asian competitors attacked that model, took market share, and transformed the U.S. automobile industry.

 

Collaboration and Co-creation: Incentives Are Important by Gaurav Bhalla Via @ralph_ohr

Customer collaboration and co-creation rests on a few key assumptions; that customers are passionate about the collaboration objective(s), and are willing and able to offer their time and creativity.

 

Open Innovation and Open Source: What They Share and How They Differ by Stefan Lindegaard

Based on the positive feedback from this webcast, we followed up with a conversation with regular opensource.com contributor Chris Grams and myself on the ways open source and open innovation are different and the things they share.

Relational Knowledge – We discover what we know in our relations by Daniel Durrant

Might our knowledge increase as we extend our relations further through structured learning networks? Relational knowledge transcends my brain and your brain, I can tell you that much. It is the relational space of reflection that I believe will take us to the next level: greater challenges, greater opportunities

Open Innovation Measurement – Part 3: Mass Customization by Volker Bilgram

Research on mass customization has examined the value accrued by co-creation in a stage of the value chain very close to commercialization.

Northrop Grumman, Eastman Chemical: Where to Innovate in this Economy by Andrea Meyer

Story: At Invention Machine’s Power to Innovate user conference, Jim Belfiore, Senior Director of Client Innovation and Practices, posed the question of where to innovate in this economy. Numerous presenters provided varied and surprising answers about where they find innovation and innovation-related opportunities.

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Does Your Culture Support Innovation? By  Holly Green

There’s a lot of people talking about innovation these days, myself included.

The good news is that business leaders seem to be sitting up and taking notice of this important subject. The bad news is that once a topic becomes popular in the media, people have a tendency to see it as the next “management flavor of the month.” In other words, they perceive it as a quick fix solution rather than a long-term change in the way they do business.

Innovation: It’s All About Relationships by Deb Mills-Scofield

I spoke with John Bartolone, Director of Open Innovation for Unilever ‘s Skin & Hair Care division the other day. Unilever is known for brands like Lipton, Slim-Fast, Ben & Jerry’s, Dove, Pond’s Lifebuoy and Axe (any of us with teenage boys knows this one!).

 

How Do You Know When to Jump? By Tim Kastelle

We keep hearing that the whole point of strategy is build a sustainable competitive advantage. This makes some sense, up to a point. The problem though is that the skills and routines that help us build one can also constrain us, and prevent us from responding to a changing environment.

 

5 Ways To Improve Your Innovation Pipeline by Rowen Gibson via @ralph_ohr

How healthy is your company’s innovation pipeline? Is it already operating at peak performance, helping you pump out a torrent of new growth opportunities across product, market, and industry spaces? Or would it be fairer to say that there is still room for improvement?

How to change people’s behavior by tweaking the environment by Jorge Barba

The interesting discussion we had about innovation being a matter of age brought up a lot of insights, one in particular was that to breed innovation an environment is more important than the age of the innovator.

Five Types of People That Kill Innovation by Stefan Lindegaard

Who are the people that kill innovation in corporate organizations? Here is my take on five types. Let me know what you think and what you can you add.

The 5 BEST Personal Growth Videos EVER by FinerMinds Team

One-Minute Life…Enthusiasm Unleashed

 

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