A Personal Canvas To Reinvent You

Do you have a plan for everything but you? Does your team know where they are but not where they go to next? In our haste to deliver and to perform, we often lose that all important space to stop, to take time – and to think.

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We Deserve Better Quality Business Events, Conferences & Seminars

Too many conferences and events over sell and under deliver. I am increasingly finding this unacceptable.

BORING event
Only Another Seven Keynotes To Go Before Coffee…

Over the last twelve months I have attended a lot of marketing, digital and innovation themed conferences, seminars and industry events. A few were a great investment of my time and money. Some were disappointing – but free. Too many of them however were, universally awful. The worst offenders were more hype over substance and I felt ripped off paying for them as I gained nothing from the experience. Isn’t it time we deserved better, smarter and more productive business conferences, events and seminars?
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A More Beautiful Marketing Question? Part Two

marketingquestionIf marketers asked more beautiful marketing questions would we not create more beautiful marketing answers? What should those questions be? And why do we struggle to ask them? Part one of this two-part blog featured a review of Warren Berger’s excellent book ‘A More Beautiful Question’ where he explores the importance of questioning in innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship. In this second part I’m looking at how this approach can be applied specifically to marketing and the kind of questions that marketing leaders need to encourage to be asked more inside our organisations.

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Book Review – A More Beautiful Question by Warren Berger. Part One.

In many marketing and innovation environments there is a big lack of good questioning.

‘Why Don’t Companies Train People To Ask Questions?’ – Warren Berger

qmarkThis is just one of the many great questions that Berger raises in this wonderful book that should be essential reading to anyone involved in product development, innovation or marketing performance. Linking to the themes from Berger’s main website – it explores the role and power of questioning in business, life – and everything. And just as important he examines why is it we seem too often to have forgotten the power of asking the really important questions – just when we need them more than ever? A More Beautiful Question is subtitled ‘the power of inquiry to spark breakthrough ideas’ – and of course in the vast realm of innovation literature, the role of inquiry and problem solving is a common theme. Curiosity (and some would argue friction and argument, as discussed in my interview with Gordon Torr in 2013) is the foundation of fresh ideas and solution. Continue reading “Book Review – A More Beautiful Question by Warren Berger. Part One.”

Richard Branson – On Why Entrepreneurs Need Collaboration

In a recent article published in Entrepreneur magazine, Sir Richard Branson explains why the best entrepreneurs and marketers seek out new conversations, new ideas and new ways of doing things.  A common ‘myth’ of innovation and creativity is the belief in the lone creative genius toiling away on their masterpiece. In reality – most breakthroughs require smart, highly motivated, highly communicative, diverse and argumentative small teams of people, energised by good leaderships and working with good processes. This paragraph from this piece from Branson explains it brilliantly; 

” Many people think that an entrepreneur is someone who operates alone, overcoming challenges and bringing his idea to market through sheer force of personality. This is completely inaccurate. Few entrepreneurs — scratch that: almost no one — ever achieved anything worthwhile without help. To be successful in business, you need to connect and collaborate and delegate.Finding ways to meet with people in the real world and build business relationships is becoming ever more important in the digital age. While in some industries it’s possible for employees to limit their communications to email and, if they wish, avoid interacting with colleagues (and their managers), that’s not possible for entrepreneurs, since relationships built on trust are vital to doing business.”

To can read the full piece here: Richard Branson Is Not Going Alone. 

Book Reviews Part Two: Social, Digital And Innovation

Six Books That Have Crossed My Desk Recently
Six Books That Have Crossed My Desk Recently

In the second of this two-part series I am reviewing three more excellent books; ‘The Little Black Book of Innovation’ by Scott D Anthony, ‘Likeable Social Media’ by Dave Kerpen and ‘Pioneers of Digital’ by Paul Springer and Mel Carson. Together they deliver some great answers  to relevant questions, such as; What are the deadly sins of innovation? How should a brand develop digital content and engage with consumers in social media? And what kind of people helped create digital landmarks such as iTunes, Lastminute.com and TED? Read on to find our more. Or, alternatively go to Part One to see my reviews of ‘Strategic Partnering’ by Luc Bardin, ‘Brandscaping’ by Andrew M Davis and ‘Media Franchising’ by Derek Johnson by clicking right here…

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Book Reviews Part One: Partnership, Franchising And Brandscaping

In the first of this two-part series I am reviewing three recent books; ‘Strategic Partnering’ by Luc Bardin, ‘Brandscaping’ by Andrew M Davis and ‘Media Franchising’ by Derek Johnson.

Six Books That Have Crossed My Desk Recently
and  Six Books That Have Crossed My Desk Recently

I try to keep my radar tuned-in whilst trying to avoid too much of the noise. And for that reason there is still something essentially useful about a well structured book with quality content. My lecturing work at Tech Music School in Fulham and developing a paper on media industry collaboration for Henley Management School has seen me explore a number of interesting avenues from a range of great writers recently. From the latest thinking on strategic partnering and innovation to the lessons to be learnt from digital pioneers and brand & media franchising.

In the first of this two-part series I am reviewing; ‘Strategic Partnering’ by Luc Bardin, ‘Brandscaping’ by Andrew M Davis and ‘Media Franchising’ by Derek Johnson.

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Doing: Why Innovative Companies Collaborate With Partners

“If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.  Make at least one definite move daily toward your goal.” – Bruce Lee.  

new tech head 2014
Innovation Starts By Looking For New Connections Outside Of Your Organisation

The development of focused relationships with partners, allies and networks is a greater driver of innovation than countless rounds of internal brainstorming and intranet posts asking for everyone to be a bit more creative. Yet often individuals and companies cannot get over that first collaborative relationship step and move towards acting, testing and building something new, that could be greater than the sum of their two parts. Bruce Lee, knew a thing or two about the need to act and not just think.


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My Blog Cloud 2013 – Not A Bitcoin Or Selfie Or Twerking In Sight.

blog cloud 2013 B2013 was a year that saw conversations speckled with comments on recovery, growth and creativity. The Economist says that Selfie and Bitcoin were the big words of the year. And many learnt the delights of twerking. But the big words for me last year were Data, Cafe Workshops and Collaboration. And according to my blog tag cloud, there was a fairly large amount of innovation, creativity, working and reading too.