Stop – Order – READ THIS BOOK!

Hi friends,  Peter Brown - a participant in Innovation College this past week recommended with great enthusiasm that I read the book EXTREME OWNERSHIP - How US Navy Seals LEAD and WIN.    THE BOOK ROCKS... ORDER IT... READ IT...  LIVE IT! When you read it - you will find alignment between the principles taught and the systems for Enabling Innovation By Everyone, Everyday that make up Innovation Engineering.  At it's core the message is the system thinking of Dr. W. Edwards Deming.   It's what Dr. Deming taught the Japanese in 1950 and the Western World in the early 80's.   It's about leaders being real LEADERS - it's about Enabling and Trusting those under you to lead - it's about Alignment on a common aim - it's about being comfortable with failure as a part of rapid cycles of learning. To give you an quick idea of the content - here's a list of the chapter names / principles taught       No Bad Teams, Only Bad Leaders       Believe       Check the Ego       Cover and Move       Simple       Prioritize & Execute       Decentralized Command       Plan       Leading UP and Down the Chain of Command   [...]

By |June 18th, 2016|1 Comment

The Secret of GREAT Innovators – exposed

Great Innovators - the ones that create big ideas that customers are willing to pay more money for - have a secret source for inspiration. And that source is a patent database. Patent databases contain detailed 'blueprints" as we call them for how to invent just about anything.  AND - when you take two to 6 of these patent blueprints and put them together - you can't help but be inspired to create fresh ideas that can make a difference in your world. Patents give you the background and step by step instructions for how to make the impossible possible. There are commercial databases designed for patent professionals. They work for everyone - if you have a little patience. To make it easier for or “ordinary” people to search and find inspiration from patents we’ve created a new type of patent database.   It’s called Patent ROI 3.0 -it’s a dramatically upgraded database designed to deliver faster and more accurate patent searches and alerts.    It has three unique features PAIN FREE - Separation of FREE, FLEA MARKET & CURRENT PATENTS:  This makes it painless for you to find “free technology” i.e. patents n the public domain - to build [...]

By |June 15th, 2016|0 Comments

Free Online Innovation Conference

Hello Pioneers, Register yourself and or your team for the 4th annual Innovation Engineering Conference - held on-line June 22, 2016. To register click here WHAT:  Innovation Engineering is a new field of academic study and leadership science.   It teaches you and your team systems to ENABLE innovation by everyone - resulting in both increased speed to market while at the same time decreasing risk. ON-LINE CONFERENCE:  The Innovation Engineering movement has an international conference each year.  The conference is in two parts - a “beta” version was tested in a live event that was recently held at the Eureka! Ranch in Cincinnati Ohio USA.   The full release version is an ON-LINE conference.   It’s an interactive event with participants from around the world.   A PDF of the work along materials will be emailed to those who register prior to the event. WHEN:  The online conference is June 22, 2016 from 9 am EST to 5:00 pm EST WHO:  The Innovation Engineering on-line conference is valuable to those who are NEW to Innovation Engineering as well as those who are experienced veterans.   The conference is designed to work well for individuals.  HOWEVER - it is even [...]

By |June 2nd, 2016|0 Comments

4th Annual Innovation Engineering Conferences

4th Annual Conferences Enabling LEAP Innovations Nothing enables innovation confidence and momentum like disruptive “Leap” Innovations. In truth - these types of big ideas that “matter” are no harder to create and develop then small ideas.   That’s because: 1) Innovation Leaps are changes that are worth the effort i.e. “they are cool stuff that matter” 2) Innovation Leaps have upside potential that creates pull within the organization 3) Innovation Leaps are a ton of fun to work on as they are truly Meaningfully Unique With the release of Innovation Engineering 3.0 - education content, human systems and digital tools the movement has everything it needs to enable and accelerate Leap innovations. To help the community activate the world’s best practices - this year’s theme is Enabling LEAP Innovations.  We will be unleashing, igniting and yes enabling big, bold, ideas that matter! A LEAP INNOVATION - Two Conferences (Live & Online) each with the SAME Content As the movement multiples around the world, AND corporate travel budgets continue to be under pressure :) - it’s clear that we need to innovate on how we run our annual conference. The simple yet elegant idea we are testing this year is to hold two [...]

By |May 4th, 2016|0 Comments

“Consistency” is the Hobgoblin of Little Minds….

As Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote in his famous 1841 essay on Self Reliance “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day” Dr. Deming said it in a similar way when challenged to defend why he had changed is views versus a year before; “I will never apologize for learning.” Sadly - in today’s world - instead of never ending learning and innovation - we embrace a world of “DECLARE & DEFEND.”  To change is to show weakness - to be a flip flopper - to not have conviction. All great successes that I’ve been a part of or observed involved never ending innovation from raw strategic direction - through idea generation and development to market.  And it doesn’t stop there - great leaders pivot and adapt their innovations even after they’ve shipped.  Great leaders know that anything they have created can be made [...]

By |May 2nd, 2016|1 Comment

How to create a culture that does Cool S@!T that Matters

Apologies in advance for the length - I think you'll find it worth the read :)   Two days ago I received an e-mail from Walter Werner a Deming Master who used to work for my father at Nashua Corporation. The e-mail was in response to an on-going discussion we've been having on how to bring system thinking to organizations today. The "ideal" approach to culture change is leadership driven.   However, today just as it was in 1980, many leaders find it difficult to lead the transformation.   It's easy to "whine" about leadership not leading the transformation.  However, I and the  Innovation Engineering Movement have a strict no whining policy.  Instead to phrase Admiral Peary, discoverer of the North Pole "we shall find a way or make a way." Walter's note sets up the situation well.   Following it - I outline our current best thinking on how to create cultural success in today's world.   With some gentle editing for length and context to the community…Walter wrote Doug, This idea has rattled around in my head for a couple days now. I don't know if it will help you or just give you something more to think about. I am troubled by a [...]

By |March 29th, 2016|3 Comments

The SECRET: System Evolution not Revolution

Key Message:   System Driven Innovation requires never ending innovation in our internal systems for strategic alignment, phase gate, collaboration, rapid research and patenting.  HOWEVER - it’s easier to find the time and energy to invent a breakthrough innovation then it is to get an investment in system improvements. THE SECRET to system innovation is to do it through EVOLUTION not REVOLUTION.  This insight has come to me over the past month as I worked on the 3.0 version of the fourth Innovation Engineering course on campus - System Driven Leadership. It was reinforced yesterday in an email from Walter Werner, Deming Master.   The italics are his words… A simple statement of our purpose would be work smarter not harder. If an organization is not constantly working to make its systems more efficient then they will become less efficient over time.   Eventually work/problems/fire fighting moves up the organizational ladder at least two levels higher than it/they should. Now no one can get their own work done because they are too busy doing someone else's work.  The challenge we collectively face is that our human systems for innovation are wasteful and inefficient.  Quantitative assessments of the systems for innovation [...]

By |March 23rd, 2016|1 Comment

The older I get the more I value every moment

The older I get the more I value every moment. Every idea that comes to my mind. Every hour I spend teaching someone. Every meeting I spend where something wonderful is developed or decided. The older I get the less patience I have with meaningless  blah, blah, blah We are on this earth for a very short time.  It's our responsibility to ourselves and the communities we are a part of to make a difference that matters with every moment. Valuing each moment requires us to confront reality with an optimistic mindset.  As Helen Keller said "No pessimist ever discovered the secrets of the starts, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a heaven to the human spirit." Hmmm... confronting reality usually has a tinge of negativity and destruction. Optimistically Confronting Reality means you are being "realistically idealistic." It's about believing that you can make a difference and take actions on making it happen. It's about believing in the good of others and encouraging them. It's about believing in the power of never ending learning. No matter how much we think we know :) As I've written before... Realistically Idealistic -  a dreamer who does Realistically Idealistic -  a believer that tomorrow can be better Realistically [...]

By |March 22nd, 2016|0 Comments

Celebrating 30 Years + Special Offer

This week marks 30 years since I sat down with Tim Riker and incorporated Eureka! Ranch.    In the beginning the company was called Richard Saunders International - in honor of Ben Franklin’s pen name when he wrote Poor Richard’s Almanac.   Our initial office and the location for Eureka! Sessions was the basement of our home.   Our funding source was three credit cards plus my wife working double shifts at the hospital.   People often ask did you have any idea it would turn out as it has?  The honest answer is no and yes.  No I could not have imagined what a ride it's been.   But YES  I always felt that wonderful things would happen if we believed in the power of never ending learning (stimulus), learning from others (diversity) and rapid experimentation (drive out fear). This weekend I reflected on the journey.   Among my reflections… • SURPRISE - My overwhelming feeling is one of surprise that it’s been 30 years.  It definitely doesn’t seem like it’s been that long.  I guess that’s what happens when you are immersed in something that you really love.  It just doesn’t feel like work.  Time stands still.  Life is good. [...]

By |March 14th, 2016|10 Comments

Innovation Requires You to Expose “Nakedness”

In Hans Christian Andersen’s classic short story - “The Emperor’s New Clothes” a vain emperor is hoodwinked by those working for him to believe that his new suit of clothes are made from a fabric that is invisible to anyone who is “hopelessly stupid.” Everyone in the community plays along until an honest child blurts out the truth - setting off a chain reaction of awareness.  As Jack Zipes wrote, “Sight becomes insight, which, in turn, prompts action.” It’s the same with Innovation. At it’s most basic - Innovation is change. And change requires someone to have the energy to speak up and declare that the existing way is not right.  Change also requires courage  - because when you speak up there is always the chance that you will be marked as “hopelessly stupid.” We all become the Emperor when we don’t confront the realities around us. - When we don’t say something when we know an idea we are working on is wrong. - When we accept stupid rules that prevent us from innovating. - When we don’t speak truth because we are concerned about what others will think It’s time to speak up and Expose Nakedness! The good [...]

By |March 4th, 2016|2 Comments