Don't Do The Wrong Things When Things Go Wrong

No company is perfect. Something will eventually go wrong, even if you have the greatest Six Sigma or quality program on the planet. And it is how you handle these problems that can determine your relationship with your customers. For example, I needed a taxi from my hotel in Paris to the airport. According to the front desk, it was supposed to take only seven minutes. After ten minutes, the woman apologized and walked outside to see what was going on. The police had blocked the road and no cars could get down the street. She walked with me to the corner to see if my taxi was waiting there. It was not. She had me wait at the corner while she ran back to the hotel to call for another taxi. Given the road problems, they would not send another car. Instead …

Posted in Psychology, marketing | 5 Comments
The Four C's of Marketing

According to John Jantsch by Matt Heinz The Referral Engine by John Jantsch is one of my favorite business book reads this year. Great advice, practical, easy to implement and proven to drive cost-effective, organic customer growth. In the September issue of CRM Magazine, John gave an interview in which he highlighted his 4 C’s of Marketing. I’ve included them here, but I also recommend a read of his full Q&A (as well as the book). Content: Prospects expect lots of educational content and may not trust an organization that’s not committed to creating a rich Web presence. Context: With so much information out there, marketers need to get very good at filtering, aggregating and personalizing content. Connection: Social technology has changed how individuals see companies, and marketers must meet the heightened expectations of an open and personalized organization. Community: Social technology has made it much easier to create communities … Continue reading

Posted in Strategy, marketing | 1 Comment
'Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire' shipped to nearly 90 countries

Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire is being announced by John Wiley & Sons today. Please help get the book off to a strong start by purchasing a copy (or one for each member of your team), and then reading and reviewing it on the retailer’s site or on your own personal blog. If you love Blogging Innovation, then you’ll love the book, and getting a copy of the book is a great vote of support for the work we are doing to make innovation and marketing insights accessible for the greater good. A lot of hard work went into this book to make it accessible for innovators and managers in organizations of all sizes, while at the same time, it is also structured in such a way that it could be very useful in an academic setting. I hope you’ll enjoy the book! You can see the foreword from Rowan Gibson … Continue reading

Posted in Headlines, Innovation | 1 Comment
Ch... Ch... Changes!

“The act of creation begins first as an act of destruction.” – Picasso Face it. No one likes change. No one likes chaos. No one likes starting all over again — especially the older we get. Get over it! The only way the species survives (and your organization) is by adapting to change — and change is what’s upon us now. Big time. The economy is crumbling. The old institutions are dying. Nothing, on the outside, ever stays the same. Picasso knew this. YOU know this. And your customers are only going to wait so long for you to turn your knowing into action. So, let the old forms die. Let what no longer works fall away. Then, usher in the birth of WHAT’S NEXT — before that, too, falls away — only to be replaced by what’s next after what’s next. Don’t miss an article (1,800+) – Subscribe to … Continue reading

Posted in Leadership, Management, Psychology | 1 Comment
Rotate Your Mental Crops

Draw on the Expertise of Someone Who Works in a Completely Different Field by Paul Sloane If you are planning a creative thinking session around a particular topic then one way to help displace your thinking and inspire ideas is to bring in an expert from an entirely unrelated business. A company had an issue with its sales force. Morale was low and team spirit was poor. Sales people complained about poor leads and poor commissions but the company directors were sure the real problems lay with the motivation and drive of the sales team. So they planned a creative thinking session and put together a team to tackle this problem. They started the meeting with a talk from an outside expert – a Major who had served many years in the Army and knew how the Armed Services recruited, trained and motivated its staff. How did they instill courage, … Continue reading

Posted in Creativity, Innovation, Leadership, Management, collaboration | 1 Comment
Observe & Measure for Continuous Improvement

Of the ten imperatives of Robert’s Rules of Innovation, this step is all about continuous improvement. It is necessary to Observe and Measure throughout the Innovation process, or else, how would you recognize successful Innovation? A system of metrics will objectively show your progress and success each step of the way. Plan. Do. Check. Act. It’s essential to follow a course of actions that produce ongoing improvement. So first, gather initial observations and measurements at the beginning of the NPD process. It’s necessary to establish a baseline or starting point and measurable facts versus subjective assessments. Secondly, to have an optimal measurements, one should establish leading and lagging indicators – leading to show where you are heading, and lagging to show you rear-view mirror observations. Examples of leading indicators can be patents filed, ideas created and in the hopper, as well as development time spent. Lagging indicators include patents granted, … Continue reading

Posted in Innovation, Management | 1 Comment
Innovation Perspectives - A Rhetorical Question

This is the lost fifth ‘Innovation Perspective’ article that we were supposed to publish last month as part of a series from multiple authors to get different perspectives on ‘Should companies treat innovation management as a core competence? And if so, how?’. Here is the missing perspective in the series: by Kevin McFarthing It’s really a rhetorical question – should innovation management be a core competence? Well, of course it should, if you are serious about growing your business. Growth = survival more so now than ever before. If you’re lucky enough to be in an industry or company that can rely purely on market expansion for short-term growth, you’re unusual, and your position will be temporary. Imagine the CFO walking into the CEO’s office one Monday morning to declare that all financial records will in future be kept on Post-It notes. Or the Head of Regulatory Affairs in …

Posted in Headlines, Innovation Perspectives | 2 Comments