Tag Archives: authors

Interview with Change Management Review

Interview with Change Management Review

I recently had the opportunity to sit down with Theresa Moulton of the Change Management Review™ Podcast, about my work as a popular keynote speaker, workshop facilitator, and thought leader on the topics of continuous innovation and change, and some of my work with clients to create innovative strategies, digital transformations, and increased organizational agility.

But mostly in this information-packed interview, I reveal key lessons from the Change Planning Toolkit™ and my book Charting Change, including what’s hard about change, and how the visual, collaborative approach of the Change Planning Toolkit™ can revolutionize how we plan our projects and change initiatives.

1. Click here to visit the Change Management Review interview page

2. Click here to get your copy of Charting Change

3. Click here for more information on the Change Planning Toolkit™


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2017 Thinkers50 Nominations Now Open

2017 Thinkers50 Nominations Now OpenEvery two years Suntop Media ranks the top 50 management thought leaders and bestows the Thinkers50 Global Ranking of Management Thinkers. The ranking relies on nominations and voting from the community, meaning that the public decides who is selected.

Click here to nominate me by entering the following information:

Your Name
Your Email
Your Global Ranking Nominee: Braden Kelley
Notes (optional): Braden Kelley is an in-demand workshop leader and keynote speaker on the topics of innovation, digital transformation and organizational change. He is the creator of the revolutionary Change Planning Toolkit™ and the author of two popular books, ‘Charting Change’ from Palgrave Macmillan and ‘Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire’ from John Wiley & Sons. Braden has written hundreds of articles for publications including The Washington Post, Wired, and The Atlantic. And, in his spare time he created the site that became http://innovationexcellence.com – the world’s most popular innovation web site, and tweets from @innovate.

Click here to nominate me by entering the above information.


In addition, they are taking nominations for Distinguished Achievement Awards in the following categories:

  • Breakthrough Idea
  • Digital Thinking
  • Ideas Into Practice
  • Future Thinker
  • Innovation
  • Leadership
  • Strategy
  • Talent

The INNOVATION category is where I would greatly appreciate your nomination, but I also firmly believe the Change Planning Toolkit™ qualifies me for the BREAKTHROUGH IDEA and IDEAS INTO PRACTICE categories, but I’ll leave that up to you!

Click here to nominate me for the Distinguished Achievement Award by filling in the following fields with whatever information you would like (I’ve included some thought starters):

Your Name
Your Email
Your Nominee for Breakthrough Idea Award: Braden Kelley
Your Nominee for Ideas Into Practice Award: Braden Kelley
Your Nominee for Innovation Award: Braden Kelley

Notes (optional): Braden Kelley created the revolutionary Change Planning Toolkit™ to help organizations plan their projects and change initiatives in a more visual, collaborative way so that teams stand a better chance of beating the 70% change effort failure rate. He is the author of two popular books, ‘Charting Change’ from Palgrave Macmillan and ‘Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire’ from John Wiley & Sons, and continues to be an insightful innovation voice for publications including InnovationManagement.se, SAP’s Digitalist magazine, ProjectManagement.com, and Innovation Excellence. In his spare time he tweets from @innovate.

Click here to nominate me for the Distinguished Achievement Award by filling in the above fields.


There is also a short form at http://www.thinkers50.com/scanning/identify-new-thinkers/ that you can use for identifying new thinkers (and all of the above info works). 😉


I am deeply grateful for your continuing support.

Sincerely,

Braden

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Taking Four Different Paths to Innovation

Taking Four Different Paths to InnovationInterview with Gijs van Wulfen

I had the opportunity recently to interview fellow Innovation author Gijs van Wulfen to talk with him about his new book The Innovation Maze, which is a follow-up to his great first book The Innovation Expedition.

1. In the book you cite a study saying companies reported a drop in breakthrough ideas between the mid 1990’s and 2010. What do you attribute this drop to?

The share of breakthrough new products has been halved in the last decades from 20.4% in the mid-1990s to only 11.5% in 2010. Companies tend to prefer incremental innovations in small steps over breakthrough innovations in big jumps as they can be implemented faster with less perceived risk and fewer resources needed. Just take a look at how innovation budgets are spent: 58% of R&D spending is directed at incremental or renewal innovations, 28% at new or substantial innovations, and only 14% at breakthrough or radical innovations. It seems there’s a growing dislike for risks what causes incremental innovations to dominate. I like to quote the CEO of BMW AG, the German luxury car producer, Dr. Ing. Norbert Reithofer. When asked why BMW started the risky E-car project with the BMWi-3 and i-8 he responded very openly: “Because doing nothing was an even bigger risk.”

2. At the beginning of your book you highlight “15 Obstacles Hindering Innovation At Its Start”, if you could only eliminate three, which three would you choose?

Actually my personal goal is to eliminate all 15 obstacles which hinder innovation at the start, Braden. With the right approach, I even think it’s possible too. That’s why I’ve written The Innovation Maze. If I could eliminate three, I would choose the ones which are hindering people in organizations the most:

  1. No priority for innovation. This is relatively easy to solve, as you only have to pick the right moment. Never present a new radical innovation project to your board when business is going up fine.
  2. No market need. The biggest problem for start-ups or R&D-projects in big firms is that they provide solutions without a problem. Connecting to customers and matching potential solutions with relevant customer frictions at the start of innovation is essential. With out a customer need there is no market.
  3. No business model. Innovations are not viable without a business model. Experimenting with pretotypes or prototypes in the early phases of the development process is essential to test if your business model is viable.

Gijs van Wulfen3. Google no longer does 20% time, why do you think that is?

In 2013 Google began cutting back on their policy to give employees 20 percent of their work time to pursue projects they are passionate about, even if it is outside the core job or core mission of the company. They replaced it with a more focused approach to innovation instigated by CEO Larry Page. It resulted in more tightly targeted innovation activities, rather than the ‘scattergun’ innovation approach that was created by Google ‘20% time’. I am a fan of focused innovation, as this will increase the chance of success as less projects will get better people and more funds. It fits better Google, as a big company, with more than 60.000 employees.

4. People love to ideate and often equate ideation with innovation (which they shouldn’t). What tips would you offer to help people have a great ideation session?

Well, I have found 25 elements which are necessary creating a perfect ideation session:

Highly relevant
— Define a relevant innovation assignment, which is a challenge for the organization and the people you invite.
— Make the assignment concrete and s.m.a.r.t.
— Create momentum for ideation. Something important must happen now!

Diverse group of participants
— Invite people for whom the assignment is personally relevant.
— Invite people for both content as well as decision-making capabilities.
— Include outsiders and outside-the-box thinkers.
— Include an even mix of men and women, young & old, et cetera.
— Invite the internal senior problem-owner (CEO or vice president) to participate.

Special setting
— Look for a special and harmonious venue, fitting your innovation assignment.
— Create an (emotionally) safe environment where you can be yourself.
— Don’t allow smartphones and iPads to ring or flash.
— Never- and I really mean never do any brainstorming at the office.

Effectively structured process
— Allow at least two days for effective ideation to reach concrete new concepts.
— Spend twice as much time on the convergence process as on the divergence process.
— Plan and prepare an effective combination of idea-generating techniques.
— Be open to suggestions from the group to adapt the process.
— Make sure it is enjoyable. Fun promotes good results.
— Time box. Make sure everybody is aware of the time limits- and sticks to them.
— Hire a visualizer or cartoonist to visualize the results
— Keep up the pace; otherwise it becomes long-winded and boring.

Facilitated by a professional
— Appoint an (internal) facilitator, who stays in the background and exercises light control.
— The facilitator should reflect the opposite energy of the group. If the group is too active: exert calmness.
— The facilitator mustn’t lose sight of sub groups; constantly monitoring their progress.

Concrete output
— Make the output very concrete and clear to anybody.
— Creating concepts together with your colleagues generates maximum internal support.

The experience of sharing ideas in a structured process and drafting concrete concepts from the best ideas has a great impact on group dynamics. At the end the whole group feels ownership of all the concepts. That is essential. New ideas need a lot of ‘parents’ to survive the product development process in a corporate culture.

4 Different Paths to Innovation

5. Where do you stand on breakthrough innovation vs. incremental innovation debate?

Should you focus on incremental innovations, radical innovations, or both? This depends on your role and situation. Startups mostly enter a market with a radical innovation. Facebook, and Twitter created new markets with new-to-the-world offerings. Tesla, Uber and AirBnB broke into existing markets surprising the incumbents with their new-to-the-world offerings. Existing organizations are mostly reactive innovators, which puts them in the situation where they have to quickly come up with innovations as the urgency is high. For them, incremental innovations are faster to develop with less risk. However, that won’t be enough in the long term as they also have to come up with radical innovations in order for their organization to grow again in the longer term. It’s essential that you find a good balance between incremental innovations, improvement of present products and services, and radical innovations focusing on big ideas which are outside the present comfort zone of your organization. With incremental innovations you prove to your customers and staff that you indeed can innovate and thereby build the confidence you will need to make bigger strides, once your radical innovations hit the market later.

6. Why is ‘checking for fit’ so important? What do people risk if they skip this step?

When you (and your innovation team) have come up with great ideas the question is how to make them reality. In practice, I have learned that if they don’t fit your personal goals as a start-up founder or your organizational goals as a corporate innovator, nothing will materialize in the end. It is essential to check this fit as early as possible in your innovation journey. If you skip this step you can almost be certain that someone will stop you later. The best excuse ever for risk-avoiding-bosses is “it doesn’t fit the strategy”.

7. Understanding customers is of course important, so what are your favorite tools for achieving customer understanding?

My three favorite tools for understanding customers are: customer journey mapping, identifying customer frictions and lead-user research. With the first one you identify all the factors influencing the customer experience from the customer’s perspective in a customer journey map. This is a great technique to use in service innovation, as a service is often so intangible and the user experience is actually your offering. The second technique identifies customer frictions via focus groups. This is a very practical technique which you can use in any innovation project to get to know a better understanding of your customers likes and dislikes. The third one is lead user research. Identifying the behavior of lead-users and co-creating with them is intensive and time-consuming and especially useful when you want to discover unmet latent needs and create more revolutionary ideas.

8. What is the best way for people to document the business case for an idea?

For more than 10 years, I have been using and giving instructions on a handy, practical framework for a new business case. My advice is to just use PowerPoint (or keynote) instead of writing a full written report, as nobody will read it anyway. Here’s the framework of a seven (7) page new business case, which you can present in 20 minutes at the most.

Slide 1. The Customer Friction.
— The customer situation.
— The customer need.
— The customer friction (problem/challenge).

Slide 2. Our New Concept.
— The customer target group (qualitative and quantitative).
— The marketing mix of the new product, service or business model.
— New for…. (the world, the market, our company).

Slide 3. This Makes our Concept Unique.
— Buying arguments for the customer.
— Current solutions and competitors.
— Our positioning.

Slide 4. It will be Feasible.
— We are able to develop it.
— We are able to produce it.
— The development process.

Slide 5. What’s in it for us.
— The number of customers (in year three).
— The projected revenues (in year three).
— The projected profits (in year three).

Slide 6. Why now?
— Why to develop it now.
— What if we say no.

Slide 7. The Decision to Proceed.
— The major uncertainties.
— The development team,
— The process, costs and planning.

Thanks for the interview Braden. I wish everybody great – and successful journeys through the innovation maze.

Thanks to you Gijs for sharing your insights with our global innovation community!

To learn more about Gijs’ four paths to innovation, grab yourself a copy of his new book his new book The Innovation Maze.

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Where is the Innovation Bonfire the Hottest?

Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire Sales

Now that I’ve secured a book deal with Palgrave Macmillan for my second book, I thought it might be interesting to peek in on the Nielsen Bookscan sales numbers on Amazon and look back at the last couple of years of sales by geography in the United States for Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire. This is what you’ll see in the map above (darker color indicating more dense sales). Unfortunately they don’t collect international data an so I can’t show you a world map, despite the book’s global popularity.

So where in the United States does the innovation bonfire burn the brightest? Here are the top ten cities:

  1. Washington D.C.
  2. Boston
  3. Los Angeles
  4. New York
  5. Philadelphia
  6. Silicon Valley
  7. Seattle
  8. Cincinnati
  9. Chicago
  10. Dallas

Think your city should be on the list?

Get a copy of the book or ask your library to acquire it.

Curious what my second book is about?

My intention is to make it the definitive instruction manual for planning successful change (complete with guest experts and numerous collaborators).

I’m currently developing the powerful visual, collaborative change planning toolkit that will sit at its core and building the web site that will allow me to start inviting people to register their interest in getting exclusive early access to the toolkit before the rest of the world, so people can use it with their clients or in their company as soon as possible, and also possibly contribute to its evolution.

So, stay tuned and subscribe to my weekly newsletter to get the latest info on this exciting new project!


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What Change Roles Are Missing?

What Change Roles Are Missing?

I’m gearing up to write a new app and book on organizational change to complement a powerful new visual change toolkit that will be incredibly useful for use in change programs, project and portfolio management, and even innovation, and so I’m canvasing the organizational change literature space (including change leadership, change management, and business transformation) and looking to identify:

  1. The best organizational change thought leaders
  2. The most powerful organizational change frameworks
  3. The most useful organizational change tools
  4. The best organizational change books (including change leadership, change management, and business transformation)

Please contact me to tell me your favorites or add below in the comments.

I will be launching a new community and information site soon to launch this visual change toolkit free to the world, in an extremely collaborative way. Which is why I’m looking for your thoughts on the four items above. Once the skeleton site is up in the next week or so, people will also be able to submit their suggestions on the site.

But in the meantime, based on the success of the Nine Innovation Roles from my last book Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire and some ideas that have been triggered by the work I’ve done in various workshops with organizations around the world with the Nine Innovation Roles, I’ve decided to identify a similar set of roles that people should make sure are occupied on their guiding coalitions.

And as I look at the Nine Innovation Roles there are a few that are still applicable in a broader change context (after all, Innovation Is All About Change). Here are the ones that I believe still are necessary in an organizational change program:

1. Revolutionary

The Revolutionary is the person who is always eager to change things, to shake them up, and to share his or her opinion. These people are uncomfortable standing still and not shy about sharing their opinions. Often they see the status quo as not good enough, so the Revolutionary wants to change it.

2. Architect

Change doesn’t emerge from a vacuum. Someone has to see the bigger picture, bring the idea fragments together and create a cohesive change program, a new business architecture, and guide people to create a collection of project artifacts to help guide the change effort. This is the role of the Architect.

3. Artist

The Artist doesn’t seek change like the Revolutionary or see the big picture like the Architect, but Artists are really good at evolving the seeds of change, shaping them, watering them, and ultimately making the impetus for change more clear, the benefits more compelling, and the change plan more complete.

4. Barrier Buster

Every change effort should identify several potential barriers to change, and the team must identify ways to overcome them before the change program is ready to be communicated to the masses. This is where the Barrier Buster comes in. Barrier Busters love solving tough problems and often have the deep domain knowledge or the deep insight into the change target’s mindset necessary to move minds and resources to support the change program.

5. Connector

The Connector does just that. These people hear a Revolutionary say something interesting and put him together with an Architect and an Evangelist; The Connector listens to the Artist and knows exactly where to find the Barrier Buster that the change effort needs.

6. Lion Tamer

The Lion Tamer is really good at identifying risks, potential negative outcomes, and the steps necessary to implement a change. Lion Tamers take the unwieldy beast that any change program can easily become, tame it, help break it down into digestible chunks, and make it real. These are the people who can picture how the change is going to be made and line up the right resources to make it happen.

7. Evangelist

The Evangelists know how to educate people on what the change is and help them understand it. Evangelists are great people to help attract guiding coalition members and to build support for a change effort among leadership. Evangelists also are great at both evangelizing on behalf of customers, employees and partners, but also in helping to educate customers, employees, and partners on the value of the change effort.

8. INSERT YOUR SUGGESTION HERE

9. INSERT YOUR SUGGESTION HERE

So, that’s only a first cut at a set of Change Roles that must be filled on the guiding coalition or the change program team.

What roles are missing?

Are there any there that are not needed or redundant?

Please sound off in the comments below.


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Don’t Believe the Innovation Hype

Don't Believe the Innovation HypeThere are some strange rumors circulating out there that I’ve written a book. Before these rumors spin out of control, I thought I should address you, the loyal and valued readers of Blogging Innovation, and set the record straight.

I have not written a novel, an autobiography, or a tell-all book. Let us be clear. Despite what some people might be saying, I have not written a book about how to fix the sorry state of the global economy, or anything that might even in a small part include tips about how to find the perfect job. I also do not, nor have I ever pretended to be able to give you a new look or make you fashionable, either by writing about fashion or by speaking any magic or even mildly interesting words about the subject.

But I must admit, that yes, I have written a book about innovation. Get your rotten tomatoes ready.

Now, some of you might be wondering, why on earth would I do this?

And, some of you might be wondering why I haven’t addressed these rumors before now.

Well, in regards to the timing, it didn’t feel right to say anything before now. It just felt too premature.

Stoking Your Innovation BonfireAnd, in regards to why I would write a book? Well, it’s not to become the next Julia Child or John Grisham. I’m not very good at cooking, and I couldn’t stomach being a lawyer. But, I can finally come clean and say that, yes, I am passionate about innovation. There, I’ve said it, and if you want to know what I think about the subject, you can now read the sordid details in the pages of this book.

Instead of fashion or fine cuisine, I’ve chosen to write about identifying and removing barriers to innovation. The full title of the book is Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire – A Roadmap to a Sustainable Culture of Ingenuity and Purpose and it is available for pre-order wherever fine business books are sold. The book is being published by John Wiley & Sons, officially launches in October 2010, and features a foreword by Rowan Gibson.

With this all out in the open, I promise that my blogging game won’t go to hell in a hand basket, and I hope I won’t be missing the Postrank cut anytime soon. If you want to get the inside scoop and read more information about the book, please visit http://innovationbonfire.com.

Now that I am publicly humiliated and exposed as the author that I am, I might as well offer you the opportunity to be one of the first to preview the sample chapter from my new book. All you have to do is join our mailing list by August 31, 2010 and you will receive an electronic copy of the chapter on ‘Sustainable Innovation’ from Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire on September 1, 2010. If you’re already receiving our monthly Innovation Insights newsletter, then you will automatically receive the free sample chapter.

I promise you won’t have to wait in any silly lines (queues for the Brits and Aussies among you) and I guarantee that you will still be able to read it no matter how you choose to hold your device. Finally, please don’t tell too many about this, I’m not sure I’m ready to face Maria Bartiromo quite yet.

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