October 31, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

The Next Frontier: Why innovation needs exploration

  In Sapiens, Israeli historian Yuval Noah Harari argues that it was the exploratory mindset that led to European dominance over the world. Other empires, such as the Chinese and the Ottomans, had far greater military and economic power in the 18th century. Yet, it was the Europeans quest for understanding that made the difference. …

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October 31, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Four Simple Layers to Frame Government Innovation for the Next Presidential Administration and Beyond

Note:  Co-authored with Troy Barker Today, the concept of government innovation has rapidly moved to the top of the public policy dialogue with the increasing recognition that, like private industry, government should push itself to innovate and transform how it delivers services to its citizens. Over the past 20 years there has been growing interest in government …

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October 31, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Innovation Sighting: Samsung’s Activewash Keeps It Clean Using Task Unification

Task Unification is defined as: assigning an additional task to an existing resource. That resource should be in the immediate vicinity of the problem, or what we call The Closed World. In essence, it’s taking something that is already around you and giving it an additional job.

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October 30, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

A Shining Light of Innovation in the Syrian Civil War

Innovation practitioners sometimes complain about the interruptions of daily life that make our jobs of developing creative new ideas challenging.  We bemoan full inboxes of emails arriving daily or a calendar stacked with back-to-back meetings with no time available to think deep (and hopefully great) thoughts about whatever problems we are trying to solve.  We …

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October 29, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Supply Chain Futurists Predict The Impact Of Digital Transformation

Do you have a digital supply chain? There is a fascinating Forbes article highlighting 11 trends and future developments detailing how a digital supply chain can better enable customer-centricity: Digitization isn’t merely a buzzword. The digital transformation of your business can have a serious impact on your organization – particularly as it applies to your […]

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October 29, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Innovation Is The Only True Way To Create Value

In The Outsiders, William Thorndike argues that the most essential skill for a manager is capital allocation. To prove his point, he profiles CEOs such as Henry Singleton of Teledyne and John Malone of TCI who, while not household names, achieved outsized returns by wisely deploying their firm’s resources. Thorndike also points out that most CEOs get their …

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October 28, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

How to Sell Without Selling

A few years ago, my wife and I bought a Turkish rug from Mehmet, Istanbul’s Steve Jobs of rug merchants.

If I could run my company as well he could sell, I’d be a very wealthy man.

Technically, speaking, Mehmet didn’t really sell us anything. He si…

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October 28, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Want To Hire Innovators? Here’s How You’re Dismissing Them

Most organizations are not set up to hire innovators, rather they filter them out. Why? Because they follow the tried and true solid advice for making good hiring decisions: hire for culture-fit. To hire for culture-fit is to hire for comfort, the short-term, sameness; to keep optimizing what is rather than creating what’s next. The …

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October 27, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Paris Accenture Innovation Center: Creativity on starting-blocks

What is the Paris Accenture Innovation Center ? In a nutshell, a dizzying innovation team, acting in a tremendous place for creativity! Albane Liger Belair, Accenture Paris Innovation Center Director, and her deputy, in charge of the program lead, Math…

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October 27, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Green idea: Tape-on solar panels

A Los Angeles-based company has  developed an ultra-thin solar panel that you can duct tape to just about any surface, anywhere. Imagine the potential!   Sunflare spent 16 years developing the solar cell made with copper, indium, gallium, and selenide, which they say are superior to traditional solar technologies in terms of weight and efficiency, […]

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October 27, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Be No Longer Afraid to Boldly Innovate

To Innovate, You Must Learn To Be Fearless Did you know that the fear of public speaking is even worse than the fear of death for most people? Yes, some people prefer almost anything to standing in front of a crowd and talking. Innovation is almost as bad at some companies – I’ve heard it…

October 27, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Using Agile Product Portfolio Management

  Product managers and organizational leaders turn to portfolio management after they have two or more products to simultaneously manage. It reduces headaches and wasted effort. Traditional product portfolio management is the discipline and framework for applying your two most precious organizational resources—your people and your money—to get the greatest value out of your product investment. The …

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October 26, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Lessons from Four Great American Innovators

In 1912 a young scientist from New York, Clarence Birdseye departed on a fur-trading expedition to Labrador in Canada. While he was there he noticed that the local Eskimos kept their fish fresh in winter by freezing it in the ice.  He was intrigued to find that the fish retained its flavour and did not …

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October 26, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

The Real Work of Innovation

Being creative. Generating thousands of ideas. Making employees feel heard, valued, more than a cog in a machine. These are the superficial by-products of an in-depth discipline.

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October 26, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Balancing act: A house that reacts to your roommate’s movements

Imagine a house that stays stable only if its inhabitants cooperate! Here’s a home that is balanced on an axis. It’s called ReActor, and is part of the 2016-17 Architecture Omi exhibition WOOD: From Structure to Enclosure. Check out this amazing video: The home was constructed at the Omi sculpture park in the Hudson Valley north […]

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October 25, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Deciphering the Secret Code of Tacit Knowledge

What is it that all human beings share in common other than the need for air, water, and the undeniable fact that they will answer this question in a wide variety of ways? Well, at the risk of disturbing the people likely to answer this question in …

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October 25, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Robert Brands – You Will Be Missed

I was saddened to learn today of the death of Robert F Brands, a frequent contributor to Innovation Excellence. He died in an ATV accident while vacationing with his sons and the innovation community (and frankly the world) has suffered a great loss. Robert F Brands is the author of two books: Robert’s Rules of …

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October 25, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Need to Innovate? Just Get Lucky

To Innovate, You’ve Got To Get Lucky Previously on this blog, I’ve talked about how in order to be successful you need to get lucky. Some people think that getting lucky is a total fluke – a black swan which simply swoops and suddenly propels you into the stratosphere of success. What if I told…

October 25, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

How Formula 1 and other ‘extreme contexts’ inform breakthrough innovations [Case Studies]

Understanding the essence of our context can be the key to innovation In my last year at University, I had one course that caused me major headaches: Project management. In groups, we had to devise a project that provided a solution to a problem and im…

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October 24, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

TED Global: Open-Source, Open World [video]

Embrace our wide-open shareable future where everything’s hackable and the power of the crowd propels innovation… Massimo Banzi helped invent the Arduino, a tiny, easy-to-use open-source microcontroller that’s inspired thousands of people around the world to make the coolest things they can imagine — from toys to satellite gear. Because, as he says, “You don’t …

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October 24, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Moving the Crowd in a New Direction

The use of crowdsourcing: the goal for me, is to engage and move the crowd towards a new direction, by encouraging out individual thinking and discovery, searching for combining these contributions; ones that lead to novel, new answers that move a challenge forward into a solution,  one that has improved value over the existing. The …

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October 24, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Can You Prevent Your Idea from being Rejected?

When you have come up with great ideas the question is how to make them reality. In practice, I have learned that if they don’t fit your organizational goals, your idea will be rejected and nothing will materialize in the end. It is essential to check this fit as early as possible in your innovation …

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October 24, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Ways to Learn Creativity

There are various schools of thought about how to learn creativity. One approach is to study the functioning of the brain. The psychology profession leads the way on researching how your brain generates an idea, and it’s contributed a mountain of knowledge about it. These scientists conduct rigorous experiments to see how different conditions affect a person’s creative output. But there is still so much to learn about the brain.

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October 23, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Seniors going social: Are you listening?

Did you know that there are currently 39 million people aged 65 and older using Facebook, Twitter, and Skype, making them the fastest growing age demographic on these sites? According to the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, “the 74-plus demographic is the fastest growing demographic among social networks.” But many businesses may […]

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October 23, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Open Innovation: Overcoming cognitive bias in innovation projects

You’ve likely heard of the curse of knowledge or sometimes it is called the curse of the expert. It occurs when our knowledge leads us down predictable paths, likely not considering other possible solutions to problems but only those that are familiar to us. This is cognitive bias and it is the enemy of innovation. …

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October 23, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Innovation Misdirection

Sometimes the fact you are keeping a trade secret is well known in the marketplace. Your product may work better than competitors’ products; you may have a price advantage; or others just cannot replicate your product. Competitors may be working hard to reverse engineer or replicate your secrets. If you want to protect your trade …

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October 22, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Let’s digitize the innovation process!

What if mobile was the right media to support, democratize, and streamline the innovation process? Moodi Mahmoudi is one of the founders of Collaborne, and thats’ excatly what his startup is trying to achieve. He tells us more about it, while receiving us in their gorgeous premises in Amsterdam. The innovation management dilemma Is really …

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October 21, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

4 Visionaries Who Saw Far Into The Future And How They Did It

Successful people solve problems.  Look at any great fortune, whether it be Carnegie, Ford or Gates and you find that the source of their vast accomplishment was a problem solved.  Even more prosaic executives spend most of their time solving one problem or another, with greater or lesser skill. The contrast in outcomes can be attributed …

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October 21, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Going Back to the Garage: the rise of the Fintech intrapreneur

I recently attended a Fintech Meetup event involving 400 people present to hear the CEO of one of Australia’s four biggest banks speak about his innovation strategy. Unsurprisingly, it was to embrace innovation through technology and to create a people first culture. Interestingly, the people involved in organizing, hosting and even attending the event, seemed …

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October 20, 2016 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Don’t Make a Shrine of Your Success

The egotistical position of some brands (products, services, and organizations) that have made it put them in a dangerous mindset, a rigid alabaster-like shrine that sets into a predictable formula, loses its growth drive, and becomes an imitation of i…

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