Leverage Your Core Strength for Sustainable Growth

Most successful new businesses begin by taking advantage of a new, untapped opportunity developing in the marketplace. These businesses can grow organically for many years by continuing to take advantage of their formula for success. Take Nike, for example: during the 1980s and 1990s, Nike repeatedly took advantage of the burgeoning athletic gear market. The company leveraged its presence in athletic footwear to expand into athletic apparel, and ultimately into athletic equipment. Beginning with running, Nike would eventually expand into basketball, tennis, soccer, golf, and other sports by repeating this growth formula over and over again, in both the U.S. and internationally.

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But what if it’s not statistically significant?

I met with some company stakeholders at a client’s office the other day, explaining our process and how we’d be using interviews and qualitative analysis to do a deep dive into the minds of their customers. Heads nodded, notes were taken, and one man seemed fit to burst into applause.

All sailing was smooth until I said, “We’re going to interview twenty of your customers to get this data.”

“Wait a second,” said a guy at the other end of the table who’s an avid reader of Devil’s Advocate Quarterly, “How will twenty interviews be statistically significant?”

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Consumer Insights

Growth Insights

Understanding the wants, needs, and journeys of target customers has become a tenant of growth across the business, nonprofit, and government sectors. As various entities scramble to be at the forefront of Innovation, ahead of their competitors, the process for generating customer insights can get muddled.

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Trust me, I’m a Thinker/Analyst

The coolest job title I’ve ever had is Thinker/Analyst.

Paraphrased highlights of the associated job description include: a voracious appetite for reading, critical consideration, imagination, and a willingness to challenge people to succeed. Data enters my brain where it is digested and turned into compelling insights and crucial business implications.

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Dos and don’ts of content marketing

Inevitably, when we discuss brand objectives and marketing tactics with our clients, their main goal is to be recognized as “leaders,” “experts,” and “innovators.” How do they hope to achieve this? Without fail, the first question is always: “Can you help us fix our website? We just need it to look sleek and modern.”

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Growth Chart Illustrated

The Real Value of Strategic Consulting

Is your company or organization slowing down? When growth becomes sluggish, it is important not to panic – know that many companies like yours go through distinct stages of fast, and then slower growth and that you can overcome the challenge. Like any doctor assessing a patient, it is critical to first accurately diagnose the problem so you can develop a strategy and plan that make sense.

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Everything I’ve Learned Doing Sales for a Drink Startup Company

Howdy folks. It’s me again, your friendly neighborhood guy that just wants to tell you about this amazing new probiotic drink called Benefizz and why carrying it in the little cafe you own is your next big move.
That’s not exactly the sales pitch I use, but it’s not so far from the truth.

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The key to true business Innovation

When I tell people I’m an anthropologist, they are more likely to assume I dig up ancient peoples or dinosaurs than to assume I consult businesses to identify and develop transformational growth strategies. While we can all appreciate Harrison Ford donning his iconic hat to smuggle treasure out of hidden temples or that twinkle in John Hammond’s eye when he talks about fossilized dino DNA (Note: Paleontology is NOT a part of Anthropology), Anthropology and the tools it offers are capable of so much more than studying past (and dead) cultures.

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Are you getting great brand work?

Two perspectives on brand…

The world’s most recognizable brands think about “brand” with a capital “B.” When defined and nurtured properly, brand is a guiding principle for how an organization interacts internally, with its audiences, with its products and services, and anywhere else its journey leads.

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Using Gamification to Motivate and Manage Your Intrapreneur Community

Vodafone uses innovation as a business driver. Our innovation program is largely focused on creating innovations with b-2-b customers.

We have four fulltime innovators in the enterprise business and sustain this work with a network of intrapreneurs across the globe, whom “we call innovation agents and innovation champions.”

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Pivoting Your Way to Profitability

There are many unforeseen hazards between concept and launch. Pivoting provides a unique opportunity to learn from experience and to change course at key development stages, making the difference between attaining mediocre results and achieving astounding success.

“I define innovation as being a participant in our collective evolution,” says Somik. “The method is a way to become who we aspire to be.”

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Winning the Scale-Up Game: From Early-Stage Bets to Market Value

This news kicks off a litany of questions: The question of strategy becomes paramount. What kind of company can you become? What value do we want to realize? What customers do we want to engage? What categories do we want to enter or disrupt? What capabilities do we need to move in these directions.

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Git-re Done! The Psychology of Project Completion

Empathy is important with all internal stakeholders. All parties need to support the change and empathize with the process. Conversation is still the best problem-solving tool. You cannot argue with field insights. Building empathy for the process is critical to the success.

How can you infuse empathy into your process? Getting empathy on innovation projects is not a natural thing—but it sets a straight path to implementation.

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A Systems Approach to Creating an Innovation Funding Board

“Engineers don’t know how to size a market opportunity, that’s weird juju to them, so we provide resources to help them,” Wirkus adds. We have also begun a three-day Startup bootcamp that is focused on human-centered design. “The engineers get antsy when they have to deal with people rather than things for the first day-and-a-half.” After this immersion into the people-side empathy, a minimally viable product gets built.

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Five Keys to Successful Collaboration

“The key to successful commercialization is successful collaboration,” he claims. “Think of the conflicts, the stress, the negotiations—and imagine if you can streamline that process and make it even five percent better. It’s an emotional problem, not a rational one.”

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