August 31, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

The Top 10 Reasons Why the Top 10 Reasons Don’t Matter

1. Reason is highly over-rated.

2. If you need more data to prove your point, you’ll never have enough data to prove your point.

3. Analysis paralysis.

4. You’re going to follow your gut, anyway.

5. By the time you put your business case tog…

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August 31, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Lines of Innovation – Part 1

First of a two-part series: “Because of the numerous examples of lines in innovation, these provide important lessons for the modern innovation practitioner.”

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August 31, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Message To Failing Media: Focus on Your Core Vision

How To Save The Failing Media I’ve read Wired magazine for over 20 years – I remember seeing my very first issue in a very eclectic bookstore in Toronto (now sadly gone) called “This Ain’t The Rosedale Library”. Like City Lights in San Francisco, it specialized in carrying both mainstream and subversive books, magazines, and…

August 30, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Shoe Dog: 11 Lessons from the Creator of Nike [book review]

I’m a sneakerhead. In English, that means that I collect trainers. I love the aesthetics of the shoes, but perhaps more so the dynamics of the collectibles market which Nike effectively created. In his new book, Phil ‘Shoe Dog’ Knight, the founder, former CEO and now Executive Chairman of Nike, he tells his story of taking the business from humble origins, through an IPO in 1980 and onto its current $30 billion market capitalisation.

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August 30, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Accelerating Innovation with Rapid Learning Cycles

As innovators, we all want to do three key things: Create something new, fantastic and disruptive; Bring it to the market fast enough to capture its value and grow our business;
Do it again (and again, and again…)

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August 29, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

How I Won a Contract from AT&T By Teaching One Man to Juggle

Man with light bulb in hand.jpg

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but a good story is worth a million. Here’s a five-minute story about how the company I co-founded, Idea Champions, won a large contract from AT&T by teaching the Director of Training and Development how to juggle in five minutes.

Read the full story in this book
A priest, a penguin, and a newspaper reporter walk into a bar
Me speaking about storytelling in business

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August 29, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

29 Innovation Activities for Your Next Ideation

I often get asked what activities a team should do in ideation to get better results and keep it fun. While there’s a limitless list of possibilities that need to be tailored to each innovation challenge, I do have some favorites. Here are 29 that work…

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August 29, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Design Thinking for the Greater Good: Innovation in the Social Sector

Facing especially wicked problems, social sector organizations are searching for powerful new methods to understand and address them. Design Thinking for the Greater Good goes in depth on both the how of using new tools and the why. As a…

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August 29, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Blockchain, VR and AI, Innovation Oh My?!

Innovation: Tech Not Necessarily Required For some reason, many people feel that innovation is not innovation unless it’s some innovative technology which is included somewhere above – or is at least being mentioned as being innovative in the news: drones, internet of things, chatbots, sensors, robots, augmented reality, etc. Not a day goes by that…

August 29, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

The Benefits of Being Unpredictable

Frederick Arthur Montague Browning (1896 – 1965) was known as ‘Boy’ Browning. He served in the British Army with distinction in the First World War.  He was promoted to Adjutant at the Royal Military College, Sandhurst.  During the Sovereign’s Parade of 1926, he did something unexpected by the large audience who came to see the …

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August 28, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Exploring frameworks and methods you need as an Innovator

Over the past twelve or eighteen months, I was asked to explore and explain different frameworks that the innovator might need to know, or at least have an opinion upon. I encourage you to explore these as all have innovating connecting value to bring …

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August 27, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Can You Present Naked Like a Master?

One of the most critical skills you need to master as an entrepreneur is presenting in front of groups. I’m still amazed when I see an otherwise engaging and passionate entrepreneur suddenly switch off their charm and go into presentation mode when they get up onto a stage. The blunt truth is that investors, prospects, …

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August 27, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

What Capabilities Do You Need to Win?

You’ve got a winning aspiration. You’ve chosen where to play, and how to win. Now: what capabilities must you have in place to enable you to win where you’ve chosen to play? This is the fourth question in the cascade of five questions in Roger Martin’s “Playing To Win” strategic framework. As Deming once said, …

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August 26, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

4 Things You Need To Build An Innovative Culture

In the late 1960’s, Gary Starkweather had a serious spat with his boss.  As an engineer in Xerox’s long-range xerography unit, he saw that laser printing could be a huge business opportunity. His manager, however, was focused on improving the efficiency of the current product line, not looking to start another one. The argument got …

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August 25, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

How Innovation Will Affect Aging and the Elderly

Innovations are changing everything around us, and the rate at which the world is changing is increasing. Fortunately, this means that plenty of cool tech will be unveiled before many of us get too old… but what about those who are already aging? It’s a discouraging thought, that you might become too old to see …

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August 25, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Upcoming Innovation Conferences You Should Attend

If you haven’t attended a conference yet this year, I recommend one of these innovation-related events taking place this fall (listed chronologically):

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August 24, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

The Single Most Important Thing to Innovate Is Yourself

When do you give up? Never! But occasionally you need to re-evaluate if where you’re going is still where you want to be. Recently I was giving a keynote about the importance of perseverance to a group of young entrepreneurs. At the end of the keynote one of the young men asked me, “You talk …

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August 24, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

To Innovate, You Need To Keep Pushing

More Than A Big Bang For those who believe that universe was created during a big bang event, once the explosion occurred, we figured that the inertia created by that event would most likely carry on almost forever (although entropy and gravity might eventually slow things down). For some reason, many individuals within major corporates…

August 23, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Overcoming Innovation’s Roadblocks: Poor Prioritization

Generating ideas is the fun (and frankly, easiest) part of innovation. The true challenge is prioritizing ideas which are equal parts desirable, feasible and viable. We’ve got a tool for that. This is the first in a multipart series on the Roadblocks to Innovation—where we’ll be providing real-world examples, actionable insights and practical tools that can …

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August 22, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

A Great Brainstorming Technique

Click here for a very lucid description of one of the most popular brainstorming techniques on planet Earth. Easy to remember. Easy to use. Easy to facilitate. A great way to spark creative thinking in your future ideation sessions. Brought to you b…

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August 22, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

How Product Managers & Innovators Look & Sound Like Leaders [podcast]

Have you noticed leaders in your organization sound and look different from other employees? It’s not always true for all organizations, but leaders often talk differently — they are optimistic when they speak, they ask insightful questions, and they tend to focus on what is most important.

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August 22, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

The 5 Pieces of the Innovation Culture Puzzle [Book Intro]

My 8th book just came out. To celebrate it, I thought I would share the introduction chapter in its entirety with the innovation excellence global community.

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August 22, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Whose Fault Is It If You Aren’t Innovating?

Why Aren’t You Innovating? It’s been said that when it comes to innovation, those at the very top get it – not a day goes by when an executive out there is not talking about how innovative their company is, or will be soon, or about the innovative exciting new products or services. If you…

August 21, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Linking Basic Research and Innovation

With a lot of public money going into such pure research having strong ROI metrics attached to it, being able to see the value in work at such an early stage of the innovation process is key.

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August 21, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Innovation or Not? – Empowering Every Resident with Tools for Change

What if you could empower every citizen with tools that will help your city, state or country innovate and change faster than the competition for a penny a person? Well, now it’s possible… A revolution is beginning, and the smart cities, states, countries, and even organizations, are arming themselves with the tools they need to …

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August 21, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

How a Case of Laryngitis Helped Me Find My Voice and Grow as a Leader

By Deb Gabor As a brand strategist, author, and public speaker, I rely upon my voice and storytelling ability to make a living. I’ve observed that my interpersonal communication style is less 1:1 and more “broadcast” in nature. I get…

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August 20, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

The Secret Behind Amazon’s Stunning Success

Author’s Note: The opinions expressed in this article represent my views and my views alone. I do not work for or represent Amazon.com in any way. In 2005, I joined the ranks of a company called Amazon.com – a company that was, at that time, a retail underdog. Their stock price was laughable at $25/share (vs. nearly $1,000/share today), and ….

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August 20, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

How Will You Win? (Strategically Speaking)

Even if your “Where to Play” (see last post) is not particularly unique, there are always ways to win. Case in point: corner coffee shops, so common they’re found in just about every town and city on the planet. Nothing at all special or unusual about that space. Who wins in that unremarkable market? Starbucks. …

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August 19, 2017 | by Chris Kalaboukis

Your One True Measure of Success

The greatest success comes from the ability to make choices about the most important thing of all. Leading a business requires sacrifice. There is no way around it. Anyone who’s been there knows about the long hours, the sleepless nights, and the myriad tradeoffs that have to be made. Add a family to that equation …

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