Monthly Archives: April 2008

Naïve intelligence: using ‘innocent experts’ to drive innovation.

I’ve been using a cool thinking tool for many years, which seems to capture peoples’ imagination. Here’s how it works. Picture the scene. You’ve organised a focus group to figure out how people buy cars. Or perhaps you’ve put together … Continue reading

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The future of shopping: Is retail in need of some therapy?

Take a trip to the small town of Rheinburg in Germany. It’s home to a 4,000 square metre supermarket created by Metro, the world’s fifth largest retailer. If you believe the hype, you are looking at the future of supermarket … Continue reading

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The future of money: will phones be the new banks?

Like predictions about the paperless office, forecasts about a cashless society have been around for a while. For example, AC Nielsen research says that only 10% of transactions in the US will be cash by the year 2020. Logically this … Continue reading

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Top 10 greatest ideas, tools and thinkers.

1. The past is more important than the future. It’s been said many times that history is no guide to the future. I disagree. It is also unsaid that companies do not need to understand where they have been to … Continue reading

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Smart spaces: why you can’t think out of the box when you’re sitting in one

One of the consequences of life speeding up it that people have less and less time to think. The culture of business has also shifted to the point where instant communication and solutions are deemed more important than real insight … Continue reading

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A problem shared is a problem solved (the rise of open source innovation).

Not so long ago companies created departments to create innovation. But the result was often that innovation was turned into a state secret. The only people who knew what was going on (and therefore the only people who could really … Continue reading

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Don’t confuse creativity with innovation

Can anyone be creative? Companies and consultants alike say the answer is yes. The British Government for one says that we are all creative and it’s education and workplace environments that are at fault for not providing enough recognition or … Continue reading

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Keep it simple

Time famine is a well documented trend that’s driving a plethora of innovations. One of my favourites is the guy on eBay who is selling pre-loaded iPods to cash rich time poor individuals. Presumably it won’t be too long before … Continue reading

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A beginners mind

In his classic 1962 book, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Thomas Kuhn argued that the people who achieve “fundamental inventions of a new paradigm have either been very young or very new to the field whose paradigm they change.” In … Continue reading

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Bite sized innovations

Albert Einstein said that “if at first the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it”. In this vein, here’s a list of some of my favourite ideas and innovations from the past 18 months, together with … Continue reading

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