Tag Archives: education

Building a Learn It All Culture

Don’t Be a Know It All

Building a Learn It All Culture

Trying to be a “know-it-all” is a flawed goal.

It is impossible to know everything.

This is by design.

This is by intention.

In much the same way that programming languages have garbage collection built in, the human brain is built to prune. The human brain is built to forget more than it remembers. Instead of trying to override our natural tendencies, we must embrace them and see instead see how they empower us to be continuous learners.

“Garbage collection is the process in which programs try to free up memory space that is no longer used by objects.” — FreeCodeCamp

Where Insights Come From by Braden Kelley

And while knowledge is important, it is perishable, it is transitory, and it is not the highest aspiration.

  1. An understanding of data allows the creation of information
  2. The consumption of information allows the creation of knowledge
  3. The exploration of knowledge allows the creation of insight
  4. The connections between insights allow the creation of wisdom

Curiosity fuels the transformation of data and information into insights and wisdom, while knowledge funnel progression is driven by a quest for efficiency.

Knowledge Funnel

Knowledge FunnelThe knowledge funnel is a useful concept learned from Roger Martin in the Design of Business. The concept highlights how any new area creating information (and hopefully knowledge) starts very much as a mystery, but as our understanding of the topic area increases, we begin to identify heuristics and make sense of it. For me, this is where we begin to move from data and information to knowledge, and then as our knowledge increases we are able to codify this knowledge into algorithms.

Importance of Curiosity to a Learn It All Culture

If you want to build a learn-it-all culture, it all starts with curiosity. Curiosity leads to inquiry, and inquiry leads to learning. The achievement of insights is the ideal outcome for learning pursuits, and insights power innovation.

I’ve been writing about the importance of curiosity and its role in innovation since 2011 or before.

“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.” – Albert Einstein

At an event I attended in New York City in 2011, Peter Diamandis of the XPRIZE Foundation talked about how for him the link between curiosity and innovation is the following:

“What should be possible that doesn’t yet exist?”

In my article Key to Innovation Success Revealed!, on the topic of curiosity I wrote:

The reason that curiosity is the secret to innovation success is that the absence of curiosity leads to acceptance and comfort in the status quo. The absence of curiosity leads to complacency (one of the enemies of innovation) and when organizations (or societies) become complacent or comfortable, they usually get run over from behind. When organizations or societies lack curiosity, they struggle to innovate. Curiosity causes people to ask ‘Why’ questions and ‘What if’ questions. Curiosity leads to inspiration. Inspiration leads to insight. Insights lead to ideas. And in a company or society where invention, collaboration and entrepreneurship knowledge, skills, abilities and practice are encouraged, ideas lead to action.

Five Keys to Building a Learn It All Culture

Change is the one constant, and it is continuous. If it wasn’t, all of us would still be hunting animals and collecting berries. Embracing continuous change and transformation allows us to accelerate our understanding of the universe and how our organizations can serve their missions more effectively and efficiently. Continuous change requires continuous learning. To prepare our people and our organization to succeed at continuous learning we need to do these five things:

1. Develop Good Learning Hygiene

Learning is a skill. To build an organization of continuous or lifelong learners, we must first help people learn how to learn. Two of the most important learning skills that we are not taught how to do in school, but that are crucial for success at innovation and other modern pursuits are the following:

  • Deep Thinking — Few of us are good at deep thinking and as a result, deep learning. Getting people to put all of their devices away is the initial challenge. Feeling comfortable not knowing the answer and sitting at a table with nothing more than a blank piece of paper is really hard. Teaching people how to meditate beforehand can be quite helpful. The goal of course is to get people into the state of mind that allows them to think deeply and capture their idea fragments, nuggets of inquiry and micro-inspirations. This will provide the fuel for collaboration and co-creation and the next key learning skill.
  • Augmented Learning — We live during amazing times, where if we don’t know something we can Google it or ask Siri, Cortana or Alexa. All of the assistants and search engines available to us, serve to quickly augment our human knowledge, skills and abilities. Knowing how to build good search queries is an incredibly powerful life skill. Teach it.

2. Reinforce Growth Mindset Behaviors

There has been much chatter about the difference between a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. It’s not really a new concept, but instead modern packaging for the level of maturity shown by those successful professionals who are willing to say:

“I don’t know.” and “Let me find out.” and “Failure is an opportunity to learn.”

Two ways organizations can demonstrate their commitment to a growth mindset are to:

  • Celebrate Failure — Create events or other ways to share some of the most important failures of the month or quarter, and what was learned from each.
  • Fund Curiosity — If you’re hiring curious people with a growth mindset, then every employee will be curious about something. Find a way to fund their investigation and exploration of what they’re curious about – even if it is not work-related. This is a great way of demonstrating the importance of curiosity to innovation and your commitment to it.

3. Make Unlearning Socially Acceptable

We all want to be the expert, and we work hard to achieve mastery. Meaning, often we hold on too tightly as new solutions emerge. And, to adopt new ways of solving old problems, often we have to unlearn what we think we know before we can learn the new ways. Smart organizations constantly challenge what they think they know about their customers, potential partners, product-market-fit, and even where future competition might come from.

4. Flex Your Reskilling and Retraining Muscles

With the accelerating pace of change, the organizations and even the countries that invest in reskilling and retaining their employees (or citizens) are the organizations and economies that stand the best chance of continued success. As more organizations commit to being purpose-driven organizations, the costs of recruitment actually increase, making it even more important to keep the employees you attract and to reskill and retrain them as your needs change. Especially as the pace of automation also increases…

5. Create Portable Not Proprietary Knowledge

If you gave an employee ten hours to spend to either:

  • Earn a professional certification
  • Complete company-created employee training

Which do you think most employees would choose?

Sorry, but most employees view company-created trainings somewhat like the dentist. They do it because they have to.

Work with professional associations to influence certification curriculums towards the knowledge, skills and abilities you need.

Find more and better ways of encouraging mentorship.

Invest in internal internship and innovation programs that allow employees to explore the ideas and the other areas of the business they’re passionate about.

Conclusion

Transitioning from a know-it-all to a learn-it-all culture is no small feat and requires commitment and investment at a number of different levels inside the organization. I’ve highlighted the five keys to building a learn-it-all culture inside your organization, but only you can take the keys and unlock these capabilities inside your organization. Now is the time to invest in your learning transformation.

But smart countries will be thinking bigger. Smart countries will be thinking about how they can transform their educational systems to create a continuous learning mindset in their next generation, finance a move from STEM to STEAM, and commit to ongoing worker reskilling and retraining programs to support displaced workers.

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The Education Business Model Canvas

Mission Model Canvas

GUEST POST from Arlen Meyers

The business model canvas is one of many useful tools to design, evolve and test products and services business models. While the original model was proposed to help founders create a viable and scaleable business model, it has also helped non-profit executives, as the mission driven business model, and those looking to make a career change, using a personal business model as the Business Model You.

Personal Business Model Canvas

The construct is also useful if you are an edupreneur, trying to create and launch new educational products and services, including new courses, certificates, programs or degree offerings.

Edupreneurship rests on several foundational principles:

  1. Having an entrepreneurial mindset
  2. Intra- and entrepreneurial knowledge, skills, abilities and competencies
  3. Design thinking focused on creating stakeholder and beneficiary defined outcomes
  4. A systems engineering approach to solving wicked problems, like how to fix outcomes disparities and their social determinants
  5. A different business model
  6. More respect for and attention to edupreneurial champions
  7. Better teacher education and training
  8. An incentive and reward system for not just tweaking a failed system , but rather, making it obsolete given the basic structural changes in the US economy
  9. Eliminating unnecessary and burdensome bureaucracy, credentialing that does not add value and administrivia
  10. Paying more attention to and measuring student defined outcomes
  11. Better public-private integration
  12. K-20 integration and alignment

13. Teaching students what they need to win the 4th industrial revolution

14. Embracing cradle to career integration

15. Creating a competent diverse and equitable talent pipeline

We has seen several recent advances in edupreneurship.

Here is the boomer’s guide to teaching millenials.

The UGME steering committee recognizes that medical education programs are faced with the ubiquitous challenge of repeated calls for innovation and that, frequently, these calls do not adequately address the associated resource demands. As medical educators, we have become highly creative in identifying strategies to do more with less, but as we know, this is not a sustainable model of stewardship. In 2016 and 2017, the UGME section collaborated with the Group on Business Affairs (GBA) to explore evolving models to support and sustain UGME programming. A result of this work is the Business Model Canvas for Medical Educators. The original Business Model Canvas was proposed by Alexander Osterwalder in 2008 and has been modified over time to fit other needs. The Table of Contents will direct you to resources, including the Business Model Canvas for Medical Educators template and two examples submitted by institutions who have successfully used the template to secure funding from within their own institution.

Business Model Canvas for Medical Educators

The edupreneurship business model canvas has a few modifications to the traditional startup one:

Customer segments: The primary customer are students. However, there are many other education stakeholders, including admininstrators, alumni, donors, employers and parents. In addition, for any given subject, potential students will have different backgrounds and experience in the subject, will have different jobs they want done, and, therefore, will have different applications for what they learned, be it finding a job, getting a promotion, or adding value where they presently work.

Value proposition: For each customer segment , you have a specific value proposision. You typically describe it in the course syllabus, telling users about the intended audience, the goals of the course, the learning objectives, and the curriculum. For example, the value proposition for a course I teach to xMBA/HA students is :

This course will introduce graduate level students in healthcare administration and leadership to the principles and practice of healthcare innovation and entrepreneurship defined as the pursuit of opportunity under volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous conditions with the goal of creating stakeholder defined value through the deployment of innovation using a valid, automatic, scaleable and time sensitive (VAST) business model.

Following completion of this course, you should be able to:

1. identify gaps in your health entrepreneurship competencies and develop a personal and professional development plan to address them

2. create an organizational culture of innovation, lead innovators and overcome the barriers to healthcare innovation dissemination and implementation

3. identify the multiple clinical and non-clinical ways to practice healthcare entrepreneurship

4. Create a plan to solve a problem inside or outside of your organization that meets the goals of the quintuple aim (Quality, cost, access, experience, waste/business operations)

5. Identify the startup life cycle and challenges at each stage

Channels: This describes how you will deliver your course. Will it be face to face, online or some hybrid model with elements of both?

Customer relationships: This describes how you will get, keep and grow the numbers of students who will take the course, e.g. promoting in the course catalog, attending a career or course proposal day, creating awareness on social media or using word or mouth dissemination from previous students.

Revenue model: This describes how your employer or you will generate revenue from the products. Traditionally, universisty based courses use a “butts in the seats” model, but COVID and new eductional technologies have radically changes the revenue generating possibilities, inluding advertising, freemium models, subscription models and others.

Key resources: This describes the human, physical, intellectual property and financial resources you will need to build, execute and scale your initiative. For example, do you want to copyright your materials, or , do you want to make them an open educational resource using a Creative Commons license?

Key activities: This what you need to do to perform and deliver on your value proposition, like what you will do using a learning management system, like create videos, run office hours, moderate asynchronous virtual discussions and design and grade exams and quizzes

Key partnerships: This describes who can help you, be they guest faculty, educational technology partners, corporate sponsors, e.g. if you are using project based learning techniques or online tools and resouce producers, e.g cases from the Harvard Business School collection.

Costs: This describes the tangible and intangible costs to produce your product. In most instances, your time, opportunity costs and effort will overshadow the monetary costs.

COVID has accelerated the pace of change in higher education, forcing them to create entrepreneurial universities. Teaching faculty how to use the education business model canvas should be part of faculty development to mimimize projecdt and product failure.

Here is what I learned, using the business model canvas, teaching sickcare innovation and entrepreneurship to first year medical students at the University of Colorado.

In this post , Steve Blank offers a new definition of why startups exist: a startup is an organization formed to search for a repeatable and scalable business model.

So is a new course or certificate. Use the education driven business model to make your product desireable, feasible, viable and adaptable and be sure to document your success when it comes time for your evaluation,promotion and tenure review. More likely, though, you will be including it in your failure resume, since, like the vast majority of new products, yours is likely to fail because 1) you offered a product students don’t want to buy or someone does not want to pay for, and 2) you do not have a VAST educational product business model.

Image credits: Strategyzer

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Free Change Planning Toolkit™ Access for All*

3 Free Change Planning Toolkit™ Site Licenses*According to multiple sources, including McKinsey, 70% of change efforts fail. The reason many change efforts fail is that they often lack a clear plan.

So, what’s a company struggling to keep up with the accelerating pace of change to do?

Why not revolutionize your ability to change faster than the competition using the Change Planning Toolkit™?

Change Planning Wall

The Change Planning Toolkit™ allows you to:

  1. Quickly visualize, plan and execute on your change initiative (from simple projects to complicated mergers or acquisitions)
  2. Deliver projects and change efforts on time
  3. Accelerate implementation and adoption
  4. Get a lot of valuable tools for a much lower cost than lesser offerings

Change Planning Toolkit Valuable Tools

I believe so much in the power of the Change Planning Toolkit™ that I am willing to offer a free* site license to the next three (3) firms to purchase a Change Planning Toolkit™ training session (which includes train-the-trainer).

For large companies like IBM, Accenture, Amazon, GE, Wells Fargo, Cognizant, HP Enterprise, Convergys, Oracle, or Microsoft, a free* site license represents a savings of up to $830,000 on tools with a value of nearly $500 million for a nominal investment in one day of training.

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Book a Training Session and get a free* site license
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The Change Planning Toolkit™ will help you increase:

  • Alignment
  • Collaboration
  • Engagement
  • Buy-In
  • Visibility
  • Transparency
  • Agility
  • Speed
  • Adoption

Change Planning Toolkit Benefits

While decreasing:

  • Project Risk
  • Failure
  • Cost Overruns
  • Late Deliveries
  • Surprises
  • Confusion
  • Resistance
  • In-Fighting
  • Staff Turnover

In addition, consulting firms will be able to increase their revenue and customer lifetime values using the Change Planning Toolkit™ and earn extra revenue as a reseller.

Change Planning Toolkit Benefits for Consulting Firms

Meanwhile, after the training, the QuickStart Guide and my book Charting Change (which training participants will receive**) will keep you (and your clients) on track and reinforce your learning.

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Book a Training Session and get a free* site license
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People can also get the Change Planning Toolkit™ for individual educational use for only $99.99/year (or $999.99 for a lifetime license).

* The site license is free for the first year. After 365 days it can be renewed for a very affordable $2/employee per year. Each employee gets access to tools that other companies might charge up to $20,000 for a single user to access.

** Depending on the country, book will be provided in either hardcover or digital form to training participants, but not both

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Book a Training Session and get a free* site license
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Accelerate your change and transformation success

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Change Planning Toolkit™ Ask Me Anything Transcript

Change Planning Toolkit™ Ask Me Anything Transcript

On Thursday, June 8th I took all questions about the Change Planning Toolkit™ on TWITTER via hashtag #cptoolkit and my contact form. Here were the questions and the answers:

1. I bought your insightful book Charting Change – How can I get the supplementary materials (26 of 50 Change Planning Toolkit™ tools) that go with the book?

Charting Change book buyers can contact me using my contact form here and get me their proof of purchase. Then I will send out the Change Planning Toolkit™ Basic License to them as an 11″x17″ scalable pdf download.

Book buyers can upgrade from the Basic License to the Bronze License or get their organization on the path to success with a site license at any time.

2. Who is the Change Planning Toolkit™ designed for?

The Change Planning Toolkit™ was designed for change leaders, project managers, and program managers to make it easier to successfully plan and execute projects, programs, change initiatives, business transformations, and digital transformations.

Change Planning Canvas

3. I’ve heard amazing things about the Change Planning Canvas™ – How can I get a copy of it? Is there a poster size?

Buy a copy of my latest book Charting Change, contact me with proof of purchase and I’ll send out the 11″x17″ of the Change Planning Canvas™ along with 25 other great tools!

Or, purchase a basic individual educational license and you’ll get instant access to these same 26 of 50+ tools along with a digital copy of the book (hardcover option in certain geographies).

Or, purchase a bronze individual educational license for the Change Planning Toolkit™ and you’ll get all 50+ tools, including the Change Planning Canvas™ in a scalable 11″x17″ pdf PLUS a Quickstart Guide PLUS several discounts.

There is a 35″x56″ poster size version of the Change Planning Canvas™ available for commercial site licensees. Consulting and training companies looking to grow their business, or organizations looking to increase their organizational agility and beat the 70% change failure rate should contact me about site licenses starting at $2/yr per employee.

4. What exactly is the Change Planning Toolkit™?

The Change Planning Toolkit is collection of 50+ tools to make change planning more visual, collaborative, and fun!

It is designed to be used by PMP’s in project management as well, and dovetails nicely with the ACMP Change Standard for change management professionals. In fact you can get a nice ACMP Standard Visualization in the ten free downloads.

5. What do people get when they purchase the Change Planning Toolkit™ Bronze License?

People who purchase the individual educational license of the Change Planning Toolkit™ Bronze License $1,200 worth of items for the extremely low price of $99.99/year (or $999.99 for a lifetime license) that will fundamentally transform how you plan and execute ALL of your projects and change initiatives, from this point forward, greatly increasing:

  • Project success rates
  • Organizational agility
  • Ability to beat the competition
  • Collaboration levels inside the organization
  • The innovation capacity of the organization
  • Employee retention
  • And more!

I answered most of the specifics in question three, but just to recap in a simpler way, if you purchase the bronze license, you get access to:

  • 11″x17″ scalable pdf version of all 50+ tools (including the Change Planning Canvas™)
  • QuickStart Guide
  • Use of the tools for individual educational use unless a commercial site license is purchased (starting at $2/yr per employee + small setup fee)
  • 35″x56″ poster size scalable downloads for key tools (COMMERCIAL SITE LICENSES ONLY)

6. What differentiates the Change Planning Toolkit™ from the competition?

First of all, I created the Change Planning Toolkit™ because so much of what project managers and change practitioners need to be successful didn’t exist!

So, it has been designed to play well with the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) from the Project Management Institute (PMI), the Change Standard from the Association of Change Management Professionals (ACMP), and ADKAR from ProSci. But, the Change Planning Toolkit™ delivers value for project managers and change practitioners that those can’t.

In fact, I created a Visual Project Charter™ and a visualization of the ACMP Change Standard as free downloads to help ACMP and PMP practitioners be more successful within their existing frameworks.

So, no matter what project management or change management methodology you like to use, the Change Planning Toolkit™ will feel familiar, and will increase your ability to achieve success with the kinds of projects and change initiatives you’re already running!

7. What’s your view on change management versus project management?

Most people talk about change management as if it is a subset of project management, but that’s so not true!

People need to change this thinking because it’s a big reason why so many projects fail.

Instead what we need to do is to flip this thinking on its head and start seeing project management as a subset of change management. One of the 50+ tools in the toolkit (and in the book) visualizes what such a world can and SHOULD look like. It’s called Architecting the Organization for Change:

Architecting the Organization for Change

You’ll notice that all five of the Five Keys to Change Success are all represented here. 🙂

What’s next?

Look for more AMA (Ask Me Anything) sessions on the Change Planning Toolkit™ and The Experiment Canvas™ in future weeks!

FYI – On Twitter I am @innovate if you aren’t already following me.


Accelerate your change and transformation success

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Partners Wanted – Taking Nine Innovation Roles Global

Partners Wanted - Taking Nine Innovation Roles Global I was in Boston, MA last week for the Front End of Innovation conference and had the opportunity to train dozens of potential corporate Nine Innovation Roles trainers as part of my quest to set the Nine Innovation Roles free and make this powerful tool available for people to use to improve the effectiveness of their innovation teams and the overall innovation capability of the organization.

Now it is time for the next step, to train other service providers from all around the world on the Nine Innovation Roles so they can use it with their customers.

Already, we have a Spanish language version of the cards and resources in process.

For interested service providers, there are only a few small requirements for becoming a Nine Innovation Roles training partner:

  1. Translate this page on my site (see Spanish example) – will publish and give translation credit with 1-2 links to first translator of each language
  2. Translate this page on my web site – will publish and give translation credit with 1-2 links to first translator of each language
  3. #1 and #2 will allow me to get a translated version of the Nine Innovation Roles cards design created for you
  4. Translate the Nine Innovation Roles presentation embedded in #1 (can leverage #1)
  5. Translate the Nine Innovation Roles worksheet I link to in #1 (can leverage #1)
  6. Attend an inexpensive Nine Innovation Roles train the trainer webinar that I will be holding soon.

To register your interest in becoming a Nine Innovation Roles training partner please fill out the contact form and make a note in the question field.


Build a common language of innovation on your team

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Free Nine Innovation Roles Train the Trainer Session

Nine Innovation Roles Train the Trainer I will be in Boston, MA this week for the Front End of Innovation conference May 6-8, 2013 at the Seaport World Trade Center, joining 650+ innovation managers and thought leaders from around the world who are serious about learning more about the front-end of innovation or improving existing innovation efforts.

For those of you are interested, I am planning to hold a FREE Nine Innovation Roles train the trainer session to go with all of the other FREE Nine Innovation Roles resources I offer hear on my web site under ‘Products’. To register your interest please fill out the contact form and make a note in the question field.

I will also be leading some thought provoking panel sessions, sharing new insights, and reconnecting with innovation friends (both old and new) at this always fun and energizing innovation event.

If you’d like to set up a meeting to explore your innovation efforts or needs while I’m there, please contact me.


Build a common language of innovation on your team

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Innovation Quotes of the Day – June 9, 2012


“The real challenge, therefore, is to turn innovation from a buzzword into a systemic and widely distributed capability. It has to be woven into the everyday fabric of the company just like any other organizational capability, such as quality, or supply chain management, or customer service.”

– Rowan Gibson


“I believe that we underestimate children’s ability to understand the real world and I think that the education system and the business world need each other more than they realize. We need to re-imagine our public-private partnerships and expectations when it comes to education, and we need to start educating today’s young kids for tomorrow’s world.”

– Braden Kelley


“Before you start ideating, you need a set of really novel strategic insights. These are like the raw material out of which exciting innovation breakthroughs are built. If you ask people to innovate in a game-changing way without first building a foundation of novel strategic insights, you find that it’s mostly a waste of time. You get a lot of ideas that are either not new at all, or so crazy that they’re way out in space.”

– Rowan Gibson


“Instead of pursuing the current education mantra of more, better, faster, we need to instead rethink how we educate our children because we need to prepare them for a different world. A world in which flexibility, adaptibility, creativity, and problem solving will be prized ahead of the deep technical knowledge that is fast becoming a commodity and easily available.”

– Braden Kelley


What are some of your favorite innovation quotes?

Add one or more to the comments, listing the quote and who said it, and I’ll share the best of the submissions as future innovation quotes of the day!

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Innovation Quotes of the Day – May 17, 2012


“Indeed parents of some of the most innovative young people whom I interviewed for this book carefully monitor and limit ‘screen time’…the Innovation Generation, have extraordinary latent talent for – and interest in – innovation and entrepreneurship, likely more than any generation in history.”

– Tony Wagner


“The faster you get at learning from unforeseen circumstances and outcomes, the faster you can turn an invention into an innovation by landing smack on what the customer finds truly valuable (and communicating the value in a compelling way).”

– Braden Kelley


“It’s a lot easier to name the things that stifle innovation like rigid bureaucratic structures, isolation, and a high-stress work environment.”

– Senior IBM Executive


What are some of your favorite innovation quotes?

Add one or more to the comments, listing the quote and who said it, and I’ll share the best of the submissions as future innovation quotes of the day!

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Innovation Quotes of the Day – April 28, 2012


“Cutting the deficit by gutting our investments in innovation and education is like lightening an overloaded airplane by removing its engine. It may make you feel like you’re flying high at first, but it won’t take long before you feel the impact.”

– Barack Obama


“Being successful in the innovation aspects of social business requires an organization to establish a place and a reason for mutually beneficial dialogue to occur.”

– Braden Kelley


“I cannot help fearing that men may reach a point where they look on every new theory as a danger, every innovation as a toilsome trouble, every social advance as a first step toward revolution, and that they may absolutely refuse to move at all.”

– Alexis de Tocqueville


What are some of your favorite innovation quotes?

Add one or more to the comments, listing the quote and who said it, and I’ll share the best of the submissions as future innovation quotes of the day!

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