The Real Power of Purposeful Tangents

March 22, 2014

In a blog entry of mine last year, I discussed the concept of “Purposeful Tangents.” (if you’ve not read it, I encourage you to do so) In that article, I mentioned I was going to take a class with master magicians. Well, I just completed the training, and it was beyond my expectations. I felt like a kid at Disney World. I had so much fun learning magic. But I learned something even more important. Magicians take advantage of visual blindspots to create their illusions. They know how to “trick” the […]

Cool Tools for Presenting

March 13, 2014

Do you give presentations as part of your job? What if you could draw directly on your slides while standing in the audience? For a while now, I have been using some fun technologies that allow me to make my presentations much more engaging. What You Need AppleTV A wifi router An iPad (I use an iPad Mini Retina because its size is perfect for walking around) An HDMI to VGA converter (if the projector is VGA) Keynote for IOS A stylus The Hardware Set-Up For this to work you […]

Discovering Your Blindspots

March 12, 2014

Here’s a video I recorded for “The Art of Sales” event in Canada. In it I talk briefly about two common innovation blindspots, and how to shine a light on them.

Your Customers Don’t Value What You Think They Do

March 11, 2014

One week after starting my speaking business a dozen years ago, I met with the owner of a speaker’s bureau in London to discuss representation. In the meeting he expressed serious interest. So much so that a few days later he called me about a potential gig. The call came to my mobile phone as I waited for a train. It was difficult to hear him due to the noise on the platform.  However, through the ruckus I could hear  “What is your speaking fee?” I was ill prepared. I […]

Two Email Productivity Life Savers

February 7, 2014

I am always looking for ways to make my life simpler. I’ve found two that really seem to keep my inbox clean. Sanebox FollowUpThen Both work with any email client or operating system (as far as I know). Sanebox Sanebox scans incoming mail and decides if it is important or not. If it looks like spam, a newsletter, an autoresponder, a mass mailing, an order receipt from or anything like that, it quickly removes it from your Inbox and puts it to a separate @SaneLater folder. Of course you […]

Continue Buying Those Lattes

January 22, 2014

The way you ask a question will have a profound impact on how you answer it. This is a fundamentally critical concept in the world of innovation. If you are working on a problem/opportunity, changing just one word can influence the types of solutions you get. I’ve discussed this concept extensively on my blog. But did you know that the way you frame your New Year’s Resolution (if you set one) will have a huge impact on the actions you take towards the achievement of that goal? According to a […]

HBR: Do You Know What Makes Your Company Distinctive?

January 18, 2014

An excerpt from my latest Harvard Business Review article… Every company has a limited amount of time, money, and resources that it can invest in innovation. That’s why they should focus their energies on opportunities that will set them apart from their competition — that is, they should innovate where they differentiate. One company that does this exceptionally well is USAA, a financial services firm, which offers its services to military personnel and their families. Given the unpredictable and transient nature of the lives of its customer base, USAA knows that […]

Resolutions That Can’t Fail

December 27, 2013

It is that time of year when everyone sets their New Year’s Resolutions. But only 8% of people are always successful in achieving the desired results. 92% fail!  (if you are interested in some fascinating statistics about resolutions, read this article: Interesting New Year’s Resolution Statistics) But all is not lost. There is a better way. Here is an article a wrote a while ago, but is timeless: Making Resolutions That Work Or, if you prefer, you can read the variant of this article that appeared as a full-page article in the Wall […]

Improve Your Innovation ROI Tenfold

December 19, 2013

This is the first in a series of bi-monthly articles I will be writing for In an attempt to stop the flow of the oil after the Deepwater Horizon oilrig explosion, the Unified Command turned to crowdsourcing to find a workable solution. Concerned citizens were invited to submit ideas. And that they did. They reportedly received nearly 123,000 submissions, of which only a dozen were deemed as having any value. This means that 99.99 percent of the time spent thinking about the problem, submitting solutions, and evaluating them was a waste […]

The Danger Of Being Too Controlling

December 18, 2013

If you want to grow your company, you’ve got to learn to let go of any task that doesn’t set you apart from the competition. ***  I recently spoke at an event where attendees were mainly small-business owners and solopreneurs. One of the points of my talk addressed the need to “innovate where you differentiate.” In other words, any activity that doesn’t set you apart from the competition is something you should consider delegating or outsourcing. Unfortunately, for a small-business owner, this means giving up some level of control. At […]

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