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#InnovatorsMeetup In Review – Alexa: What are multi-modal experiences? Learn what & create one w/ WillowTree

We explored next generation digital and mobile from award-winning development group WillowTree Inc. Experience their design thinking-based innovation process with an interactive multi-modal design workshop designing the grocery experience of the future. Thanks Nate Wooten, a Principal Product Strategist at WillowTree, for hosting. You were an incredible guide into the great unknown. The team at Willow Tree gave us a peek into their process and innovative experiences with big brands like HBO, Samsung, GE, Johnson & Johnson and Lidl.  We were all [...]

#InnovatorsMeetup In Review – Virtual Ideation: Activating Customer Insights into Testable Concept Prototypes

The big question lingered as #innovatormeetup members rolled in the meeting space at the West Regional Library in Cary...Can virtual ideation really work? Can it replace in-person brainstorming and ideation sessions? More importantly, can it be effective when working on physical products?  Our featured speaker and innovator was Ty Hagler, who is the Principal at Trig® an award-winning innovation, design, and marketing firm based in Chapel Hill, NC. First, Ty is just a cool dude. He was once an Olympic hopeful [...]

Leadovator Showcase and Book Release Shared Experience RECAP

"Best book launch event ever," was the most frequent comment shared from attendees on March 14, 2017, at the SOLD OUT Leadovator Showcase and bestselling book -  The Innovation Revolution - release and signing event in Raleigh, NC. This event was NOT a book-signing as usual. Instead, it was a shared experience to demonstrate the power of unleashing #hiddengenius to change the world.  That's exactly what we did. I could have hogged the stoplight...it was my party after all, but that would have [...]

#InnovatorsMeetup In Review – Secrets from Elite Futurists to Discover Your Next Move

Discover Your Next Move from the Secrets of Elite Futurists Recap Innovator Teresa Spangler, CEO of Plazabridge Group facilitated a powerful discussion on how futurists predict trends at our most recent #innovatorsmeetup. First, she explained what futurists do. They look at data to discern trends to predict the future. Data comes in all forms. They try to make connections that others don't see. And, yes, sometimes they get it wrong. Teresa shared projects she and her team were working on, including patent for using [...]

#InnovatorsMeetup In Review – Service Design & Rapid Prototyping – A Workshop

Service Design Rapid Prototyping Workshop Recap Patrick McGowan, @theservdesgroup, Service Design Expert from The Service Design Group facilitated a powerful rapid prototyping  workshop for service design at our most recent #innovatorsmeetup.  A quick setup  of the workshop will offer context for the insights Patrick shared. Workshop Type: Business case-based workshop --Intentionally Patrick kept the business case vague in order to allow participants to explore innovative ideas. The case had a specific audience so the teams would design a service that meets the needs and expectations of that [...]

#InnovatorsMeetup In Review – The Future of Storytelling

A wicked cool place that is a bottle shop meets local bar Stag's Head was the venue for our Future of Storytelling topic for the Carolinas Innovators & Design Thinkers Meetup. Tracey Hancock shared insights about being in the bar business and shared that the space was used for a variety of events including engagement parties...#neverthoughtofthat. If you are looking for a unique space to hang or have an event, we would recommend Stag's Head.   We also were able to sample some #NCcraftbrews [...]

#InnovatorsMeetup In Review – Customer Experience Disrupting Marketing

A beautiful night, outdoor setting at the newly renovated Cafe Helios was the venue for our Customer Experience disruption topic for the Carolinas Innovators & Design Thinkers Meetup. Thanks to Shervin Tahssili and the entire Cafe Helios staff for a warm and inviting space. Shervin shared that he was NOT a restaurateur, but responded to the Helios following after it closed earlier. He renovated the cafe with a modern artwork, but kept the community feel so many fans loved. We explored a [...]

#InnovatorsMeetup In Review – Food/Wine Festival, Accounting and Design Thinking @ Work

WOW! Our best Carolinas Innovators & Design Thinkers Meetup yet. And the #InnovatorsMeetup After Tweetup was rockin' too. The energy of this amazing group of innovators was palpable. Here is a video glimpse of the action.   Let's start with the venue -- Babylon Restaurant in downtown Raleigh, NC. A vintage building turned eclectic Moroccan setting with an imported tiled ceiling installed by hand. The food and festive beverages were amazing and the staff incredible! Thank you for sponsoring our Meetup! The [...]

#InnovatorsMeetup In Review – Emerging Tech & News Reinvented

Another practical and relevant event for the Carolinas Innovators & Design Thinkers Meetup.  We had an incredible group of innovators @HQRaleigh for the session. Spence -  Chris Spencer, R&D Manager in Emerging Technology for IBM shared how ambiguity for most is a risk, but for emerging tech is an opportunity. He emphasized the need to not only accept ambiguity but also to embrace it in order to leap ahead.  We learned how Waston started as a billion dollar opportunity, but [...]

Innovators Meetup TweetUp (#InnovatorsMeetup) and Local Meetup (#CarolinaInnovators) – July 12, 2016 at 6pm ET

We’re taking the Carolina Innovators Meetup online! Join us tomorrow, July 12th, at 6pm ET to discuss assessing and getting started with emerging technologies as well as transformation trends in the news. TweetUp participants using the designated hashtag, #InnovatorsMeetup, will be entered to win one of 10 prize packs. When: Tuesday, July 12, 2016 Where (via Twitter): Follow the conversion online here http://tweetchat.com/room/InnovatorsMeetup and/or by following #InnovatorsMeetup In-Person: Local to Raleigh, NC? Attend in person! Join us at HQ [...]

Improv to Innovation: Innovators Meetup Recap

We kicked off our first Carolinas Innovators & Design Thinkers Meetup in style as Arik Abel shared his insights of how to use Improv to improve your innovation outcomes. The organizers had to do a little improv before the event since one of our speakers had a family situation that prevented her from speaking, but we will reschedule Gizem Cetgin and her Hidden Innovation in Accounting. Stay tuned for that reschedule. The intimate group kicked off with some introductions, and we learned [...]

Consultant Knight riding a White Unicorn

Can a Consultant Save the Day?

I'll admit that watching the movie "Office Space" is one of my guilty pleasures. There's something universal about corporate culture that is captured so perfectly in this '90s-era comedy. It's hilarious when the consultant, after interviewing the slacking, snarky main character, declares him to be "just a straight shooter with upper management written all over him."   I roar with laughter at that scene because I have been on both sides of it. I have been the employee who has been [...]

Lebron James

Finding Your Office LeBron James

Forget about warmer weather and the promise of spring. In North Carolina where I live, the month of March means one thing -- the unbridled excitement of basketball fans relishing in March Madness. There's a business lesson to be learned from one of America's most popular sports, and I'm not just talking about the art of negotiating multimillion-dollar contracts. One of the most enigmatic players to emerge from the game in recent years is LeBron James. His athletic skill helped [...]

Innovation in a cup of joe

Finding Innovation in a Cup of Coffee

Innovation doesn't have to be this forced, epic thing.  A simple cup of coffee can inspire a thought that brews into genius. The coffee culture that has caught on in the United States didn't exist several decades ago. A cup of joe used to be a strictly utilitarian beverage, limited to the industrial-strength office swill or watered-down instant crystals from a jar. Teens didn't drink it, and the local diner certainly didn't offer a mocha frappucino on the menu. But in [...]

Learn 4 Real-Live-No-Jive Ways to Create an Innovative Corporate Culture

It's tacked on the office wall in virtually every company in America. Or maybe it's in that thick employee handbook that HR gave out at orientation. The Mission Statement. Typically, it's a collection of carefully crafted sentences meant to convey a purpose-driven ethos in the workplace. It's inviolable. It's sacrosanct. It's BORING and sometimes...meaningless. That mission statement hanging on the wall is also a reflection of corporate culture, which Inc. magazine defines as the shared values, attitudes, standards and beliefs that [...]

Combat the Top 5 Silent Killers of Innovation With This Holiday Gift

Looking for the Best Corporate Gift Ever? Well here is it is: Enabling Innovation. You can deliver this gift that keeps on giving with two Easy Steps: Recognize the Top 5 Silent Innovation Killers Take action against the Top 5 Silent Innovation Killers Step 1: Recognize the Top 5 Silent Killers of Employee-Driven Innovation (All are guilty of these from managers to peers to executives) Infamous Eye Roll  You have been in the company meeting when a manager presents a problem for the team to help solve. Colleagues [...]

4 Keys to Igniting Employee-driven Innovation

Innovation is the key to growth and profits. But, it doesn’t happen in isolation, in a lab or in the executive suite. It comes from the people who interact with your customers and fend off your competition every day. In other words, your employees. This is why the employee engagement epidemic is so dire, not only for company growth, but survival. 87% of employees worldwide are disengaged or indifferent at work, reports Gallup, one of the leading organizations that measure employee [...]

Introducing Innovation-as-a-Skill

Can innovation be cultivated in an employee? We believe it can and innovation-as-a-skill makes it possible. Let’s define what we mean by this concept. First, a skill is the learned ability to carry out a task with pre-determined results often within a given amount of time, energy or both.[1] Second, innovation is a new idea, a more effective device or process. It can be viewed as the application of better solutions.[2] When you break it down to its simplest [...]