Tag Archives: Communication

The Impact of 5G Technology on Communication and Connectivity

The Impact of 5G Technology on Communication and Connectivity

GUEST POST from Chateau G Pato

As we stand on the brink of the fourth industrial revolution, one technology promises to rewrite the rules of communication and connectivity: 5G. This fifth-generation wireless technology is not just an incremental improvement over its predecessor, 4G; it represents a paradigm shift that will redefine how we connect, communicate, and create. As a thought leader committed to exploring groundbreaking innovations, I am thrilled to dive into the multifaceted impact of 5G technology and share two compelling case studies that illustrate its transformative potential.

The Edge of a New Era

When people hear “5G,” they often think of faster speeds and lower latency. While these are indeed hallmark features, the real potential of 5G lies in its ability to create entirely new ecosystems of connectivity. With speeds up to 100 times faster than 4G and latency as low as 1 millisecond, 5G is the catalyst for new applications and services that could not exist before.

Consider the following advancements:

  • Enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB): Ultra-fast speeds enable smoother streaming, quicker downloads, and more robust mobile experiences.
  • Massive Machine-Type Communications (mMTC): 5G supports a vast number of IoT devices, facilitating smarter cities, improved resource management, and widespread automation.
  • Ultra-Reliable Low-Latency Communications (URLLC): Critical applications like autonomous driving and remote surgery become feasible, thanks to near-instantaneous data transmission.

These capabilities collectively create a landscape where the impossible becomes possible, redefining both personal and professional realms of communication and connectivity.

Case Study 1: Transforming Healthcare with 5G

Organisation: Teladoc Health

Healthcare has traditionally been bound by the limits of geography and infrastructure. Teladoc Health, a leader in telemedicine, is leveraging 5G technology to eliminate these barriers and deliver groundbreaking healthcare solutions.

Scenario: Remote Patient Monitoring

Imagine a rural area where access to specialized healthcare is limited. With 5G-enabled devices, Teladoc Health can monitor patients remotely in real-time. Wearable biosensors transmit critical health data instantaneously to healthcare providers, who can then make timely decisions that could be life-saving.


  • Immediate Diagnosis and Treatment: Doctors receive real-time updates on a patient’s condition and can intervene instantly if abnormalities are detected.
  • Enhanced Accessibility: Patients in under-served areas gain access to specialized care without the need for long-distance travel.
  • Cost Efficiency: Reduction in hospital re-admissions and emergency room visits translates to significant cost savings in the healthcare system.

Teladoc Health’s 5G-integrated approach showcases how enhanced connectivity can provide quality healthcare to remote ends of the world, illustrating the profound social impact of this technology.

Case Study 2: Revolutionizing Urban Mobility

Organisation: Ericsson & Autonomous Vehicle Testing in China

Autonomous vehicles (AVs) have been a subject of intrigue and speculation for years, but their widespread adoption hinges on the seamless exchange of massive amounts of data — something only 5G can handle. Ericsson, in collaboration with automotive companies in China, has been conducting large-scale trials to perfect AV technology using 5G.

Scenario: Autonomous E-Taxis in Smart Cities

In densely populated urban environments, congestion and pollution are ongoing challenges. Autonomous electric taxis (E-Taxis) guided by 5G networks present a futuristic solution.


  • Reduced Traffic Congestion: Real-time data enables AVs to communicate with each other and traffic management systems, optimizing routes and minimizing congestion.
  • Enhanced Safety: Ultra-reliable, low-latency communication allows AVs to react almost instantaneously to obstacles or changing conditions, significantly reducing the likelihood of accidents.
  • Sustainability: Electric AVs contribute to a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, aligning with global sustainability goals.

This pilot initiative is revealing that 5G technology can make smart cities more efficient and livable, bringing us closer to a future where urban transportation is not just smarter, but also greener.


The advent of 5G technology is more than just a technical upgrade; it is a transformative force that will reshape numerous facets of our daily lives and interactions. Through enhanced connectivity and higher speeds, 5G will enable unprecedented innovation across industries, from healthcare to urban mobility and beyond. The case studies of Teladoc Health and Ericsson’s AV trials in China are only the tip of the iceberg, demonstrating the immense promise and potential of this cutting-edge technology.

As we navigate this new digital frontier, it is crucial for industry leaders, policymakers, and innovators to collaborate and harness the full capabilities of 5G. The future is not just about more data and faster speeds; it’s about creating new opportunities that improve our quality of life and drive societal progress.

Let’s embrace the 5G revolution and unlock the doors to a more connected, efficient, and enlightened world.

SPECIAL BONUS: The very best change planners use a visual, collaborative approach to create their deliverables. A methodology and tools like those in Change Planning Toolkit™ can empower anyone to become great change planners themselves.

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Change Management Strategies for Organizational Growth

A Comprehensive Guide

Change Management Strategies for Organizational Growth

GUEST POST from Art Inteligencia

Change is the only constant in today’s dynamic business environment. Amidst rapid technological advancements, evolving market demands, and global economic shifts, organizations must continuously adapt to survive and thrive. As a thought leader in human-centered innovation and change, I’ve distilled critical change management strategies that foster organizational growth. In this article, I’ll explore these strategies and elucidate them through two compelling case studies.

1. Embrace a Culture of Continuous Improvement

Successful organizations cultivate a culture that encourages constant enhancement and innovation. This involves empowering employees at all levels to identify inefficiencies and propose improvements. Implementing a continuous improvement mindset can lead to sustained, incremental growth and resilience against market shocks.

Case Study: Toyota

Toyota’s adoption of the Kaizen philosophy epitomizes a culture of continuous improvement. “Kaizen” translates to “change for better,” a principle that Toyota has ingrained in its DNA. Employees at all levels, from assembly line workers to executives, are encouraged to contribute ideas. Daily team meetings, called “morning markets,” provide a forum for discussing suggestions.

One notable initiative was the introduction of the Andon cord—a system allowing any worker to halt production if they noticed a defect. This not only improved quality but also demonstrated Toyota’s commitment to giving employees ownership in the production process. Over time, this approach reduced defects, cut costs, and bolstered Toyota’s reputation for reliability, thereby increasing market share and driving growth.

2. Foster Agile Leadership and Decision-Making

Navigating change requires leaders who are agile and adaptable. Agile leaders can pivot quickly in response to disruptions and ensure that their organization remains aligned with the market. They cultivate a work environment where swift, yet informed decision-making is the norm

Case Study: Spotify

Spotify’s organizational growth can be strongly attributed to its adoption of the Agile framework. Instead of traditional top-down management, Spotify operates in small, autonomous teams known as “squads.” Each squad is responsible for a specific feature or component of the platform and functions like a mini-startup within the company.

These squads are empowered to make decisions and execute changes independently, enabling faster development cycles and quicker responses to market needs. This agility allowed Spotify to outmaneuver larger competitors, consistently deliver innovative product features, and rapidly expand its global user base.

3. Engage Stakeholders Through Transparent Communication

Clear and consistent communication is crucial for any change initiative. Engaging stakeholders—from employees to external partners—through transparent communication builds trust and mitigates resistance to change.

Case Study: GE’s Transformation Under Jack Welch

When Jack Welch assumed the role of CEO at General Electric (GE), he embarked on a massive transformation program known as “boundaryless behavior.” Welch’s vision was to dismantle bureaucratic silos and create a more integrated, competitive company.

One of his critical strategies was transparent and direct communication. Welch held regular town hall meetings, shared the company’s financial performance openly, and involved employees in decision-making processes. Training programs known as “Work-Outs” were established where employees could voice concerns and offer solutions directly to executives. This open dialogue not only enhanced employee morale but also facilitated smoother implementation of change initiatives, ultimately fueling GE’s growth into a powerhouse conglomerate.

4. Leverage Data-Driven Decision Making

Emphasizing data-driven decision-making ensures that organizations navigate change with precision and confidence. By leveraging data analytics, companies can identify trends, pinpoint inefficiencies, and forecast the impact of potential changes.

Case Study: Netflix’s Evolution

Netflix’s transition from a DVD rental service to a leading streaming platform and content creator exemplifies data-driven decision making. Initially, Netflix used data analytics to revolutionize its DVD rental service, predicting customer preferences and optimizing inventory.

As the market evolved, Netflix pivoted to streaming, leveraging viewer data to curate personalized recommendations and drive user engagement. Their data-driven approach also extended to content creation; by analyzing viewer metrics, Netflix identified gaps in the market and produced popular original series like “House of Cards” and “Stranger Things,” which significantly boosted subscriptions and propelled the company’s growth.

5. Develop Resilience Through Continuous Learning

Building an organization that champions continuous learning and skill development prepares the workforce to adapt to future challenges and technological advancements. By investing in continuous professional development, organizations can retain talent and foster innovation.

Case Study: AT&T’s Workforce 2020 Initiative

AT&T recognized the need to adapt to the digital era and launched the Workforce 2020 initiative. This comprehensive, multi-year strategy aimed to reskill its workforce to meet the demands of emerging technologies.

AT&T partnered with leading online education platforms and provided employees with resources to gain new skills in data science, cybersecurity, and other critical areas. By 2020, over half the workforce had participated in reskilling programs, bolstering the company’s innovative capabilities and maintaining its competitive edge in the fast-evolving tech landscape.


Implementing effective change management strategies is not a one-size-fits-all proposition. The success stories of Toyota, Spotify, General Electric, Netflix, and AT&T highlight how a tailored approach grounded in continuous improvement, agile leadership, transparent communication, data-driven decision making, and continuous learning can drive organizational growth. By learning from these exemplars and applying these strategies thoughtfully, organizations can navigate change successfully and foster sustainable growth.

Bottom line: Futurology is not fortune telling. Futurists use a scientific approach to create their deliverables, but a methodology and tools like those in FutureHacking™ can empower anyone to engage in futurology themselves.

Image credit: Pexels

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Change Communication Strategies

Effective Ways to Engage and Inspire Employees

Change Communication Strategies: Effective Ways to Engage and Inspire Employees

GUEST POST from Chateau G Pato

In today’s fast-paced business landscape, change has become the norm. Organizations constantly face the challenge of adapting to keep up with market demands and technological advancements. However, implementing change successfully requires more than just defining strategic objectives; it necessitates effective communication strategies that engage and inspire employees. This article explores two case study examples that highlight the importance of tailored communication approaches in facilitating successful change initiatives.

Case Study 1: Zappos’ Holacracy Implementation

Zappos, the renowned online shoe and clothing retailer, decided to adopt Holacracy, a self-management system that redistributes decision-making authority throughout an organization. Recognizing the potential resistance and confusion among employees during this major structural change, Zappos employed effective change communication strategies to engage and inspire their workforce.

Firstly, Zappos adopted a transparent approach to communication by sharing the rationale behind the change and its potential benefits. Jeff Weiner, CEO of Zappos, held numerous town hall meetings to address employees’ concerns and provide a platform for open dialogue. This facilitated a deeper understanding of the change’s purpose and ensured that employees felt heard and valued.

Secondly, Zappos utilized various mediums to communicate the change. They created informative videos, conducted webinars, and shared success stories from other organizations that had successfully implemented Holacracy. By utilizing a multichannel approach, Zappos ensured that employees received consistent and accessible information, increasing their comprehension and acceptance of the change.

The combination of transparent communication and a multichannel approach resulted in engaged and inspired employees at Zappos. By involving employees in the decision-making process and providing adequate support and information, Zappos successfully navigated the complexities of change and strengthened its workforce’s commitment to the new Holacracy system.

Case Study 2: Microsoft’s Cultural Transformation

Microsoft’s cultural transformation journey under CEO Satya Nadella serves as another compelling example of effective change communication strategies. Nadella aimed to shift the company’s culture from a slow-moving bureaucracy to a more agile, innovative, and growth-oriented organization. To achieve this, he implemented various communication strategies to engage and inspire Microsoft’s diverse workforce.

The first crucial step in Microsoft’s transformation journey was establishing a clear shared purpose. Nadella effectively communicated his vision of empowering every individual and organization to achieve more. By articulating a compelling purpose that resonated with employees’ values, Microsoft created a unifying narrative that inspired employees to embrace the cultural shift.

Next, Microsoft recognized the importance of continuous communication throughout the change process. Nadella participated in numerous internal events, global town halls, and leadership forums, actively engaging with employees and listening to their concerns. By consistently providing updates and seeking input, Microsoft fostered a culture of collaboration, transparency, and trust, crucial elements for successful change management.

Furthermore, Microsoft focused on building a learning culture and invested in employee development programs. They introduced new initiatives such as “OneWeek,” an immersive event where employees could explore the latest technologies and collaborate on innovative projects. This not only upskilled employees but also created a sense of excitement and possibility, reinforcing the cultural transformation.

By combining a compelling shared purpose, continuous communication, and investment in employee development, Microsoft successfully transformed its culture. The engagement and inspiration of its employees played a vital role in aligning the organization with its strategic objectives, fostering innovation, and ultimately driving success.


Change is an inevitable part of organizational growth, and effective communication strategies are essential for engaging and inspiring employees during these transitions. The case studies of Zappos and Microsoft demonstrate the power of tailored approaches to change communication, emphasizing transparency, multichannel communication, shared purpose, continuous updates, employee engagement, and development opportunities. By implementing such strategies, organizations can navigate change successfully, ensuring their employees embrace and thrive in the new reality.

Bottom line: Futurology is not fortune telling. Futurists use a scientific approach to create their deliverables, but a methodology and tools like those in FutureHacking™ can empower anyone to engage in futurology themselves.

Image credit: Pixabay

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The Importance of Effective Communication in Change Management

Highlighting the significance of clear and consistent communication throughout the change process, and providing best practices for engaging employees.

The Importance of Effective Communication in Change Management

GUEST POST from Art Inteligencia

Change is inevitable in any organization. Whether it be a minor adjustment or a major transformation, effectively managing change can make or break its success. One critical element in successfully navigating change is effective communication. Clear and consistent communication throughout the change process not only ensures that everyone is on the same page, but it also helps to alleviate resistance, engage employees, and ultimately drive the desired outcomes.

Clear communication is essential in change management as it helps employees understand the reasons behind the change and how it aligns with the organization’s goals and strategy. When employees have a clear understanding of the rationale and have their concerns addressed, they are more likely to embrace the change rather than resist it. In contrast, a lack of communication can lead to confusion, skepticism, and resistance, hindering the change process.

One case study that highlights the significance of clear communication in change management is the transformation of a large manufacturing company. The company decided to implement a new production system to improve efficiency and reduce costs. However, when the change was announced, employees were skeptical and resistant. The management recognized the importance of communication and initiated a series of town hall meetings to explain the need for the change, how it would benefit the employees, and what support would be provided during the transition. As a result, employees felt heard, and their concerns were addressed. The clear and consistent communication helped to alleviate resistance, and employees became active participants in the change process.

Consistency in communication is equally crucial throughout the change process. When leaders communicate consistently, it creates a sense of trust and transparency. It reassures employees that they are receiving accurate and up-to-date information, which is crucial in building support and maintaining engagement. On the other hand, inconsistent communication can lead to confusion and frustration, eroding trust and undermining the change effort.

Another case study that highlights the significance of consistent communication is the rebranding of a global technology company. The company decided to rebrand to better reflect its evolution and vision for the future. The management recognized that consistent communication was essential in ensuring that employees understood the rebranding and felt included in the process. They established regular communication channels, such as newsletters, weekly updates, and virtual town hall meetings, to keep employees informed about the progress of the rebranding and to provide them with an opportunity to ask questions and share their feedback. The consistent communication not only helped to align employees with the new brand but also fostered a sense of ownership and pride in the organization.

To ensure effective communication in change management, organizations should adopt best practices that engage employees throughout the process. Firstly, leaders should be open and transparent about the reasons for the change and the expected outcomes. This creates trust and allows employees to understand the need for change. Secondly, organizations should provide ample opportunities for feedback and questions. This not only shows that their voices are being heard but also helps address any concerns or misconceptions. Thirdly, leaders should communicate consistently and through various channels to reach all employees effectively. Lastly, organizations should provide ongoing support and resources to aid employees in adapting to the change. This can include training programs, mentorship, and guidance to ensure a smooth transition.


Effective communication is paramount in change management. Clear and consistent communication helps employees understand the rationale behind the change, alleviates resistance, and fosters engagement. Through case studies, we have seen how clear and consistent communication played a vital role in successful change initiatives. By embracing best practices that engage employees throughout the change process, organizations can increase the likelihood of successful change implementation.

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Overcoming Resistance to Change

Offering Strategies and Techniques for Identifying and Addressing Resistance to Change, Ensuring Smoother Transitions

Overcoming Resistance to Change

GUEST POST from Chateau G Pato

Change is inevitable in any organization, and yet many leaders find themselves battling resistance when attempting to implement new initiatives. Resistance to change stems from a variety of reasons, including fear of the unknown, lack of trust in leadership, and perceived threats to job security. However, with the right strategies and techniques, leaders can effectively identify and address resistance, leading to smoother transitions and increased organizational success. In this article, we will explore two case study examples to provide practical insights into overcoming resistance to change.

Case Study Example 1: The Sales Department’s Shift to Digital Platforms

In a mid-sized retail company, the sales department was reluctant to embrace digital platforms for customer engagement, despite the clear advantages it offered. Many sales representatives were comfortable with traditional methods and feared that digital adoption would render their roles obsolete. To address this resistance, the leadership implemented the following strategies:

1. Effective Communication: The first step was to communicate the benefits of digital platforms for both the company and sales representatives personally. Leaders explained how digital tools could enhance sales efficiency, generate more leads, and open doors to new markets. Additionally, interactive workshops were conducted to alleviate concerns and answer questions, creating a safe space for open dialogue.

2. Training and Support: Recognizing that resistance often stems from a lack of knowledge or skills, the company provided comprehensive training on digital tools. This training empowered sales representatives with the necessary skills to navigate the new platforms confidently. Ongoing support, including real-time troubleshooting and feedback sessions, further fostered a sense of security among the sales team.

As a result of these strategies, the sales department gradually embraced digital platforms, and their sales performance improved significantly. Representatives recognized the increased potential that digital tools offered, leading to a more harmonious transition and a boost in overall productivity.

Case Study Example 2: Restructuring for Agile Project Management

In a large software development company, a resistance to change emerged when transitioning from a traditional hierarchical management structure to a more agile project management approach. Some employees were skeptical, believing that the new structure would lead to increased workloads, decreased job security, and diminished autonomy. To overcome this resistance, the company employed the following strategies:

1. Empowering Leadership: To gain employee buy-in, the leadership openly communicated the reasons for the change, emphasizing the benefits of increased collaboration, faster response times, and greater innovation. Leaders ensured that team members felt involved by seeking their input and incorporating their ideas into the new structure. This approach helped build trust and alleviate concerns.

2. Pilot Projects: Instead of an immediate, company-wide implementation, the company initiated pilot projects in selected teams. This allowed small groups of employees to experience the benefits firsthand and share their success stories within the organization. By highlighting positive outcomes and lessons learned, the resistance began to diminish.

By effectively overcoming resistance through these strategies, the company successfully transitioned to the agile project management approach. Employees experienced increased job satisfaction, stronger teamwork, and the ability to adapt quickly to changing client needs. The organization as a whole became more responsive, competitive, and achieved higher client satisfaction rates.


Overcoming resistance to change requires proactive strategies to address the fears and concerns that accompany transitions. By implementing effective communication, training, support systems, empowering leadership, and pilot projects, organizations can achieve smoother transitions and garner employee support. The case study examples provided demonstrate the effectiveness of these strategies in tackling resistance to change. Leaders who implement these techniques will not only increase the likelihood of successful change implementation but also foster a culture of adaptability and growth within their organizations.

SPECIAL BONUS: Braden Kelley’s Problem Finding Canvas can be a super useful starting point for doing design thinking or human-centered design.

“The Problem Finding Canvas should help you investigate a handful of areas to explore, choose the one most important to you, extract all of the potential challenges and opportunities and choose one to prioritize.”

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Effective Communication: Unlocking Collaborative Innovation

Effective Communication: Unlocking Collaborative Innovation

GUEST POST from Art Inteligencia

In today’s fast-paced and interconnected world, effective communication plays a vital role in driving collaborative innovation. Whether it is within organizations or across industries, effective communication allows teams to share ideas, exchange knowledge, and work together towards achieving common goals. This article explores the significance of effective communication and presents two compelling case studies that demonstrate how it can unlock collaborative innovation.

Case Study 1: Pixar Animation Studios

Pixar Animation Studios has revolutionized the animation industry with its groundbreaking films and innovative storytelling techniques. To maintain their competitive edge, Pixar understands the importance of effective communication in driving collaborative innovation among their teams.

One example of effective communication at Pixar comes from the production of their hit film, “Toy Story.” The movie was a result of a collaborative effort between animators, storytellers, and technical experts. Regular meetings and brainstorming sessions were held, allowing team members to contribute their ideas and perspectives. Open lines of communication fostered a creative environment, where everyone felt comfortable sharing their thoughts and challenging existing ideas. This collaborative approach led to the development of fresh concepts and innovative animation techniques, ultimately making “Toy Story” a groundbreaking success.

Case Study 2: Google’s Project Aristotle

Google’s Project Aristotle is an extensive study conducted to understand the factors that contribute to effective team performance within the company. One of the key findings of this study was the significance of effective communication and psychological safety in fostering collaborative innovation.

The research showed that the most successful teams at Google were characterized by open and transparent communication. Team members felt comfortable expressing their ideas, even if they differed from others. This environment of psychological safety allowed for constructive debates and diverse perspectives, ultimately leading to more innovative solutions. Teams that cultivated effective communication practices were more likely to experiment, take risks, and explore new ideas together, driving collaborative innovation across the organization.

Key Takeaways:

1. Active Listening: Effective communication requires active listening, allowing team members to understand each other’s perspectives and build upon their ideas collaboratively. Actively listening to team members fosters an environment of trust and respect, encouraging the generation of innovative solutions.

2. Clear Communication Channels: Establishing clear communication channels ensures that information flows smoothly among team members. Whether it is through regular meetings, online platforms, or project management tools, accessible communication channels facilitate the exchange of ideas, knowledge, and feedback, enhancing collaborative innovation.


Effective communication is the key that unlocks collaborative innovation. The case studies of Pixar Animation Studios and Google’s Project Aristotle demonstrate how organizations can unleash their creative potential by fostering open communication, encouraging active listening, and creating an environment of psychological safety. Embracing effective communication practices allows teams to break down barriers, share ideas, and collaborate more effectively, paving the way for groundbreaking innovation and success.

Image credit: Unsplash

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The Role of Design Thinking in Business Strategy

The Role of Design Thinking in Business Strategy

GUEST POST from Art Inteligencia

Design thinking is a method of problem solving that has been around since the 1970s but has become increasingly popular in business strategy in the last decade. This approach to problem solving relies on creative thinking to find user-centered solutions and has proven to be an effective way to improve customer experience and increase profits. Design thinking has become a key element in crafting business strategy and can help organizations gain a competitive edge. Here are ten ways design thinking can help craft business strategy:

1. Identifying customer needs: Design thinking starts with looking at the user and understanding their needs. Through research and observation, organizations can identify and prioritize customer needs and then use that information to create strategies that are tailored to their customer base.

2. Developing empathy: Design thinking requires organizations to put themselves in the shoes of their customers and understand their motivations, values, and preferences. This helps organizations develop empathy for their customers and design strategies that are tailored to their needs.

3. Improving customer experience: Design thinking helps organizations create a better customer experience by focusing on the user journey and understanding their needs and pain points. This can help organizations create strategies that improve customer experience and increase customer loyalty.

4. Creating innovative solutions: Design thinking encourages organizations to think outside the box and come up with innovative solutions to problems. This can help organizations create strategies that are different from the competition and give them an edge.

5. Enhancing team collaboration: Design thinking encourages collaboration and creativity within teams by encouraging different perspectives and ideas. This helps organizations create strategies that are more effective and efficient.

6. Generating new ideas: Design thinking helps organizations generate new ideas and perspectives that can help them craft better strategies. This can help organizations stay ahead of the competition and create unique solutions.

7. Facilitating decision-making: Design thinking helps organizations make informed decisions by providing them with the data and insights they need to make informed decisions. This can help organizations make decisions that are better for the business and its customers.

8. Improving communication: Design thinking helps organizations communicate more effectively by focusing on the customer and understanding their needs. This can help organizations create strategies that are more effective and better tailored to their customers.

9. Enhancing user-centered design: Design thinking helps organizations create user-centered designs that focus on the user and their needs. This can help organizations create strategies that are more effective and better tailored to their customers.

10. Increasing profits: Design thinking helps organizations create strategies that are more effective and efficient, which can lead to increased profits. This can help organizations increase their competitive edge and stay ahead of the competition.

Design thinking is an effective tool for crafting business strategy and can help organizations gain a competitive edge. Through research and observation, organizations can identify customer needs and then use that information to create strategies that are tailored to their customer base. Design thinking can also help organizations create innovative solutions, improve customer experience, and increase profits. By utilizing design thinking, organizations can create strategies that are more effective and efficient, which can help them gain a competitive edge.

SPECIAL BONUS: Braden Kelley’s Problem Finding Canvas can be a super useful starting point for doing design thinking or human-centered design.

“The Problem Finding Canvas should help you investigate a handful of areas to explore, choose the one most important to you, extract all of the potential challenges and opportunities and choose one to prioritize.”

Image credit: Pixabay

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Let’s Chat About the Language of Innovation

Let’s Chat About the Language of Innovation

Let’s Chat About the Language of Innovation

It was bound to happen sooner or later…

What is it you might ask?

Well, it is the recognition that the language we use (and more importantly, having a common language) when it comes to innovation, to change, or to pretty much any other aspect of business is just as important as it is in our personal lives.

Who does the recognition come from?

Well, none other than the innocats, a cool group of people who host a twitter chat at #innochat every Thursday at 5PM GMT (that’s 9AM for those of you on the west coast of the USA, Noon on the east coast, and well, 5PM for those of you in the UK).

Personally I tend to use Tweetchat.com to participate in twitter chats like this because it makes it easy to follow along real-time. If you go to the Tweetchat.com web site, just enter the hashtag #innochat as the room you’d like to enter.

So, come join me tomorrow (October 9, 2014) for an #innochat on the language of innovation. You can find the introductory post for the session here:

Sorry, link expired

UPDATE: Sorry, link to transcript expired

On that page you’ll also find links to my latest article on the topic and my latest white paper (commissioned by Planview).

If you’d like to commission a white paper, webinar, or keynote speech on innovation, social business, inbound/digital/content marketing or some other topic you think I can help people make sense of, contact me.

Otherwise, come join me for a lively Twitter discussion of the importance of a common language of innovation.

Oh, and if you’re curious what my current definition of innovation is, here you go:

“Innovation transforms the useful seeds of invention into widely adopted solutions valued above every existing alternative.” – Braden Kelley

Keep innovating!

Please note the following licensing terms for Stikkee Situations cartoons:

1. BLOGS – Link back to https://bradenkelley.com/category/stikkees/ and you can embed them for free
2. PRESENTATIONS, please send $25 to me on PayPal by clicking the button 3. NEWSLETTERS & WEB SITES, please send me $50 on PayPal by clicking the button
License for presentations - $25
License for newsletters and web sites - $50

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Think Like a Tech Company or Go Out of Business

Think Like a Tech Company or Go Out of Business

by Braden Kelley and Linda Bernardi

Even in 2014, there are business sectors who feel they are not ‘tech companies’. News flash: Whether you are a consumer products company, an insurance company, a hotel, or a pharmaceutical company, your business is a technology business. Why?

Technology is the link between any business and its customers. To say technology is not core to your business strategy, means you think customers are not the key to your business success. So, your business is a technology business whether you want it to be or not.

Today technology is how you market and sell your products, make your business more efficient, and most importantly, how you stay connected to your customers. Some companies mistake the importance of technology to mean that they need to open a twitter account and monitor social media, put in an ERP and CRM system, and revamp their web site. But the importance of technology in today’s business environment is more than that.

ERP and CRM are common tools, a requirement to remain competitive, and while social media and the internet are important to sales and marketing success, they are becoming yesterday’s news as customers develop deeper connections to their mobile devices. If you aren’t on their devices and interacting in a meaningful way with them there in real-time, you won’t stay connected to them in the long run.

Let’s look at the impact on a few different industries whose members tend not to see themselves as technology companies:

1. Fortune 100 consumer product goods (CPG) companies
2. Hotel Chains
3. Big Box Retailers

1. Fortune 100 CPG companies typically manufacture large quantities of consistent products and have visually pleasing (static) web pages for consumers. But they don’t use technology well enough to detect what the market wants before it knows it, often fail to personalize or customize products to customer needs, and usually lack the online networks that could help connect other customer product needs together into new potential product ideas that the company could co-create with their customers. Often connection means post mortem analytics on data collected in the past, or, analyzing previous customer interactions with static web pages. Creating authentic customer connections requires online and mobile technology these companies usually don’t possess. I don’t mean apps (which often are pretty much the same as a website), but new physical/online/mobile engagement models that inspire customers to stay connected to the company (and each other) in a dynamic, evolving community. Rethinking is needed here. The customer is not just a buyer but an influencer. If CPG companies want to sell that next bottle of $300 facial cream, they better consider delighting, and not just marketing to, their customer base.

2. AirBnB has proven to be a major disruptive force in the hotel and hospitality business, grabbing a massive foothold in a market that the Homeaway.com member companies created and should have dominated. Resistance to AirBnB is massive and lawsuits are abundant, but for a moment let’s go beyond the hype and explore the angst of traditional hotels. AirBnB created a highly connected, effective community of property owners and property renters. This bi-directional ecosystem can only thrive if they are both happy and satisfied. To experience what they’ve created, first go to a traditional hotel website (pictures of room, building, lobby) and then go to AirBnB and browse the hundreds of customer experiences their property owners offer. On the hotel site you’ll see they’ve created the mechanics of paying to rent a hotel room, while on AirBnB you’ll see that they’ve created both an ecosystem and an experience.

3. Big box retailers have done a poor job of seeing themselves as technology companies capable of fending off challenges from online-only retailers. Target made the mistake of seeing themselves as a retailer, not a technology business, and so they outsourced their ecommerce to Amazon in the beginning, only to regret doing so because Amazon was able to learn which 20% of their inventory drove 80% of their profits, and when.

Meanwhile, Costco and Walmart, despite being two of the most successful retailers in the world, have struggled to find success online because they can’t get beyond their brick and mortar heritage to see themselves as a technology business with an integrated online/offline ecosystem. Seriously, it is 2014, do we still need to get our Costco circulars in the mail? Nothing has changed about Costco’s interaction with its customers. Walmart exacerbated the disconnection between the two sides of their business by creating a separate online division and exiling it to Silicon Valley. Costco sells different products online than offline. The results of both of these approaches have been far from stellar.

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Technology Lowers Barriers to Entry

In the history of the world, it has never been easier to start and scale a business to a global footprint, not in a matter of decades or years, but in months. And it is not just the other companies in your industry and technology-driven startups that you have to worry about if you choose not to view yourself as a technology company and move as fast as they do. You have to worry about competition from established technology players like Google and Amazon too, because one day they (or people that used to work for them) might decide that your market is attractive enough to enter and come disrupt your industry. For example, Amazon has become a book publisher and a financial services company.

Technology Enables Experiences

Technology enables the creation of customer experiences. I am going to choose my insurance company based on my experience. At the end of the day if all prices are comparable, then how the businesses you interact with make you feel, and the connections you’ve built with them will matter more. Without an emphasis on using technology to make your business a social business, you will find your company displaced by others that do. You must lead your industry in identifying opportunities to use technology to get closer to your customers. The future of business will be all about delighting customers and making their experience more personal.

Technology is not just a tool, but central to everything you do in today’s always on, always connected digital age.

Here are ten ways that technology can help you become a more social business:

  1. Building Connections
  2. Developing Networks
  3. Global Sensing and Prediction
  4. Sharing Recommendations
  5. Creating Experiences
  6. Personalization
  7. Customization
  8. Co-Creation
  9. Crowdsourcing
  10. Open Innovation

To give you an example of what things will look like in the future, the forward thinking health insurance company will leverage the mobile device for virtual ID cards, drug interaction warnings, personal triage, mobile care, wellness, cost sharing calculations, FSA/HSA administration, diagnostics, and more.


In conclusion, no matter what business you are in, it is very dangerous not to see technology as a competitive differentiator and a core driver of your business. Instead, you must constantly look at how you can become more of a technology company in order to enable deeper customer connections and more meaningful experiences. Today if you don’t connect with, understand, delight and start predicting your customer’s needs/wants, you may not thrive in your industry and your competition and new entrants who do embrace technology will replace you.

This article is brought to you by Linda Bernardi and Braden Kelley. Collectively, we have over 30 years of experience working with large, global multi-disciplinary enterprises. We write this with care and passion as we want your enterprises to succeed. We would love to hear your thoughts.

Guest Collaborator:

Linda BernardiLinda Bernardi is a Technology Strategist, Investor, and Founder & CEO at StraTerra Partners, The Bernardi Leadership Institute and a Strategic Advisor at Cloudant Inc. She is also the Author of Provoke, Why the Global Culture of Disruption is the Only Hope for Innovation. Learn more here about Linda’s work on disrupting large enterprise analytics.

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1. BLOGS – Link back to https://bradenkelley.com/category/stikkees/ and you can embed them for free
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Innovation Goes to the Dogs?

Innovation Going to the Dogs?

In case you missed it, a team from Scandinavia thinks that they’ve nearly cracked no, not the human-computer interface, but the dog-computer interface, so that some day soon we might in fact be able to understand man’s best friend.

What does the dog say?

Well, this question begs another question, do we really care? Or do we really want to hear it all of the time?

They’ve launched an IndieGoGo campaign and have already exceeded their campaign funding goal, so I guess they’ll be moving their research and product development on to the next stage.

So, what do you think, if they push the product to the finish line, will it be an invention or an innovation?

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