Innovation: Find someone who love it

>> Monday, November 30, 2009

Doesn't matter how much you want to start an innovation wave if you staff it with people that doesn't want it or doesn't believe. 
Instead, find people who can't even imagine missing it.

"I love those truisms that people use to describe a situation.
You can't force a disinterested person to innovate
Now, to me, a person who loves change and new ideas, I can't imagine why anyone wouldn't leap at the chance to participate in innovation. Sign me up! But I've discovered that while "everyone" can be innovative, many people usually aren't, and there are several good reasons for that. Understanding the reasons, and identifying the people who can or will overcome the barriers, will make your innovation effort more successful.
Perhaps the easiest way to kill an innovation project is to staff it with people who don't believe it will be successful, aren't willing to effect change and who are content to wait passively for permission to proceed."

People With Passion Drive Innovation Success
By Jeffrey Phillips, Blogging Innovation

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Misconceptions of Innovation

>> Thursday, November 26, 2009

Five common misconceptions of innovation. I admit that I never thought on lazy people as innovation champions.

Innovation Perspectives - Five Misconceptions of Innovation
By Jim Estill, Blogging Innovation

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Innovation Methods

A great post with some good ideas to help on your innovation effort.

"How hard is it to innovate? Not once but over and over? How can you repeatedly implement great new products, processes or services? Continuous innovation is not easy and if you keep using the same method you will experience diminishing results."

21 Great Innovation Methods
By Paul Sloane, Blogging Innovation

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Open Innovation: Think before you run

>> Monday, November 23, 2009

Interesting post. 
If you don't know where to go, doesn't matter how fast you run because you probably won't get there. Think first and clearly establish why and what for you need to do it.

"A journalist recently asked me how companies should get started with open innovation. I replied as below:
First ask this question: Why do we want open innovation? Many people believe open innovation is the Holy Grail and they just jump aboard without asking why open innovation is relevant to them."

Open Innovation Starts With A Why
By Stefan Lindegaard

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Failure: a good first step

Definitely worth reading. Three good lessons on how to deal with a failure. 
I've also found an important message for those who are trying - "Failure combined with a strong sense of business ethics can motivate and produce innovation, while failure due to a lack of ethics can lead to desperation.” 

"If you haven’t had a failure, you aren’t pushing the limits. If you are really an entrepreneur, you are a risk taker and less cautious by nature, so failures should be expected. Wear you startup failure as a badge of courage. Don’t go after failure, but embrace it when it does happen and grow from it.
People who are afraid of failing should not become entrepreneurs.
A failure can be a milestone on the road to success, if you celebrate that failure for what the mistakes taught you – and use the experience to move to the next idea. Here are three points of learning that many famous failures emphasize:
Failure, even multiple failures, can be the first stage of a very successful journey. Success usually comes to those willing to keep coming back. Resilience and agility are really the only sustainable edge in business. So when you experience your first failure, just give up your ego, let it go, and get back to work smarter on your next success."

Don’t Give Up After That First Failure
By Martin Zwilling, Startup Professionals Musings

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A great idea is not the only path to a new venture

>> Friday, November 20, 2009

I wouldn't say "Stop Innovating" but I can see a good point in the article.
You don't need a great idea to create a new business. A "little twist on an existing idea" with good execution might be what's necessary for success. 

"If we want more entrepreneurs, stop worrying about jumpstarting innovation. Focus on "minnovation."
In reality, the vast majority of real-life entrepreneurs around the world aren't innovators. They're minnovators — mixing small parts of novelty and creativity with huge helpings of flexibility scrappiness and a generous portion of hard-driving execution. 
Public officials from Colombia to New Zealand are hoping to create the next Silicon Valley by building modern "innovation centers" for entrepreneurs. But that tactic may unwittingly backfire: overemphasis on innovation as the pillar of entrepreneurship could actually stunt entrepreneurial growth."

Entrepreneurs: Stop Innovating, Start Minnovating
By Daniel Isenberg, Harvard Business Publishing

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Can you get things done?

>> Thursday, November 19, 2009

Worth reading post. Probably the only analysis I've ever read about characteristics of an entrepreneur I truly believe in. 

"I had a picture in the office of my first company with the logo above and the capital letters JFDI.  (In case it’s not obvious it’s a play on the Nike slogan, “Just Do It.”)  I believe that being successful as an entrepreneur requires you to get lots of things done.  You are constantly faced with decisions and there is always incomplete information.  This paralyzes most people."

What Makes an Entrepreneur? Four Letters: JFDI
By Mark Suster, Both Sides of the Table

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What's right in your company?

Very interesting post. Remind us that, probably more important than finding what went wrong and fix it, finding what went right and concentrate on that is a key to company's competitive advantage.

"In looking for improvements and innovations we tend to focus our attention on what went wrong. We try to fix problems.
However, by focussing our attention on the negative we miss the innovation opportunities presented by the positive.
In addition to fixing what is wrong we should spend time examining what is right. Look for success stories, talk to delighted customers, ask them what makes us better than the others and then build on that. Find the right partners to compensate the areas where we are ordinary or weak and free up time to find creative new ways to exploit our strengths. We need to find unexpected and unusual things that we do really well because they can give us the competitive advantage we need."

Nurturing Innovation by Focusing on What Went Right
By Paul Sloane, Blogging Innovation

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The skill every entrepreneur must have

>> Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The skill every entrepreneur must have - ability to learn; in this post, a funny story and 5 good lessons for every entrepreneur.

"It seems like a lifetime ago that I started my first business, maybe that’s because it is.  I learned a lot of lessons from that first venture, most about what not to do.
The real lesson in all of this is it doesn’t matter if you sell newspapers when you’re 7, lemonade when you are 10, or run a multimillion dollar company when you’re 40, the fundamentals of business don’t change.

Keep moving forward while learning from the past and you should be okay. And for anybody thinking about it, I can’t suggest you getting into the newspaper distribution business!"

5 Lessons Learned From My First Business
By SmallBizBee

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Keep trying

A very good story and lesson about persistence, motivation and achievements. Really worth reading. 

"Most of our jobs hinge on repetition. That's how we become good at anything. The problem is we give up too soon because anything we do repetitively becomes boring.

That is, unless we have a peculiar taste for the task; if it captures our interest. For some reason, maybe we don't even understand — and we don't have to — we enjoy it.
The trying is the day-to-day reality. And trying to achieve something is very different than achieving it. It's the opposite actually. It's not achieving it.

If you want to be a great marketer, you need to spend years being a clumsy one. Want to be a great manager? Then you'd better enjoy being a poor one long enough to become a good one. Because that practice is what it's going to take to eventually become a great one."

How Not Achieving Something Is the Key to Achieving It
By Peter Bregman, Harvard Business Publishing

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10 more don’ts in business

10 new don’ts in business that we all should read, learn and never forget.

"Entrepreneur Jay Goltz’s blog post – “Eleven easy ways to destroy your company” – includes warnings against such things as not carrying enough insurance or hiring the wrong accountant.

The book, The Ten Commandments for Business Failure, is by Donald Keough, former president of Coca-Cola. It identifies errors such as ceasing to take risks, isolating yourself. being inflexible and loving bureaucracy.

Both are full of sound advice and I was inspired to draft my own version of “How to murder your company in 10 easy steps”."

Ten easy ways to murder a business
By Luke Johnson, Financial Times

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Competition: Keep your enemies close

>> Tuesday, November 17, 2009

7 strategies to become better and stronger than your competition.
(or 7 steps of a strategy)
Some steps may seem obvious but are sow many times forgotten; some others may not look as a good option but will probably make you stronger. Worth reading.

"Business is war and the competition is the enemy--right? Wrong. Though competition is a fundamental aspect of being in business, savvy entrepreneurs know that viewing competitors exclusively as adversaries is shortsighted and potentially damaging."

7 Strategies to Beat the Competition
By JK Harris, Entrepreneur

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Leadership rules

>> Friday, November 13, 2009

Worth reading; a collection of leadership lessons from two former marines.

"True, there are some leadership rules in the Marine Corps that don't apply to the civilian world. For instance, if you can't do at least 15 pullups you are a terrible lieutenant and you'd better hit the gym; most CEOs don't need to worry about this.
But many of the most important lessons we've learned are simply about leadership and how people respond to it. These should be as useful in the office as they were in Iraq.
Also, as everyone knows, the keys to success are hard work, singleminded focus, intelligence, creativity and passion. This article is not about those things. We assume you have them, and instead offer some simple, practical rules you can follow to do a better job leading other people to follow your vision."

Lessons From The Battlefield
By Timothy Saint and Nicholas Smith, Entrepreneur

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How to keep your site alive

>> Thursday, November 12, 2009

7 good ways to show your web site dynamic and alive. All simple to set up and are good ways to engage people.

"How do you make your site more dynamic? What types of content should SMB owners be producing or aggregating to attract users, increase time spent on site and to help create a community?
Below are seven examples of dynamic content that can help you do just that."

7 Ways To Make Your Site More Dynamic
By Lisa Barone, Small Business Trends

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Value of time

>> Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Worth reading. Understand how you waste time and you'll be able to accomplish much more.

"Time is the only thing we all have in common, yet it's how we choose to spend it that defines and differentiates us as individuals. Even though time is a key success metric, I am always amazed at how many executives don't manage it as such. Time is indeed a precious and finite commodity, and those professionals that manage it wisely are those that achieve the greatest results. Show me an executive that doesn't leverage time to its highest and best use and I'll show you an executive likely to be replaced by one that can. In today's blog post I'll examine the value of time.
Whether you are a sales person, professional advisor, entrepreneur, or executive, you only have 24 hours in a day, which consists of 1440 minutes, and when reduced to the ridiculous amounts to 86,400 seconds. If you want to do more, earn more, serve more, influence more, or significantly change the level of your impact in any area, you simply must make more out of the time you have at your disposal. So, my question is this - How well do you leverage your 86,400 seconds?"

Top 10 Corporate Time-Wasters
By Mike Myatt, Blogging Innovation

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More resources for startups and small businesses

>> Friday, November 06, 2009

Great list from Mashable with tools and resources for startups; cover guides, communities, applications and a lot more.

"Let’s face it: as an entrepreneur, the odds are stacked against you. Most businesses fail after the first few years, and even if you do manage to survive, that doesn’t mean your business will redefine an industry, become profitable, or change the world. Getting off on the right foot is essential to navigating a startup from its infancy to profitability.
While we can’t highlight the thousands of resources at your disposal, we have put together twenty of our favorite guides, web apps, and tools that can help you build and launch a startup. This guide is divided into six sections, covering everything from coming up with the right idea to the steps you need to take and tools you’ll want to have to secure funding for your early-stage company. In total, you will find that this guide is a comprehensive resource for anybody who’s trying to realize his or her entrepreneurial dreams."

20 of the Best Resources to Get Your Startup Off the Ground
By Ben Parr, Mashable 

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Failure and Entrepreneurship

For those who are afraid to fail, get inspired for these famous failures and start your business today.

"To succeed as an entrepreneur there is one thing you are going to have to master… never quit, especially when you fail. It’s the great irony of success… it requires countless failures."

Famous Failures
By Mike Michalowicz, The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur

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Business networking

>> Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Wise advice. Business networking it's not only social media.

"I know in an age of Twitter and LinkedIn and all kinds of alternatives to business networking, joining the local Chamber can sometimes be seen like less of a priority. Many young businesses believe there are better uses of their time and money.
I disagree. It may have taken me longer than it should have, but joining the Chamber was an inevitable no-brainer."

7 Reasons I Joined the Local Chamber of Commerce
By Matt Heinz, Blogging Innovation

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Entrepreneurial Culture

Worth reading article about entrepreneurial culture. You may find 6 thoughts that I believe everyone should read and incorporate.

"A couple of years ago, I helped set up a software business in Vietnam, where it was evident that everyone was an entrepreneur, from little kids on the street shining shoes, to new businesses for the world market springing up by the hundreds. The entrepreneurial culture was everywhere.
What I saw in Alaska was a small group of good people fighting to start a movement, to overcome the gaps to funding and education, in a state filled with sometimes complacent “employees” of the big oil companies, government surpluses, and Natives with cross cultural and generational challenges.
The difference between the two parts of the world certainly made me think about what drives an entrepreneurial culture."

Building an Entrepreneurial Culture
By Marty Zwilling, Startup Professionals Musings

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Understanding Failure

Worth reading. Understand these 10 situations and probably you/ your organization will increase your success rate.

"I’ve experienced failures. I’ve watched others fail. I’m guessing you’ve seen plenty as well. This morning I tried to think through some common reasons why failure happens. I’m looking forward to some healthy conversation on this one."

10 Reasons Why You’re Probably Going to Fail
By Tony Morgan,

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10+1 Tips for success

11 good tips to improve your business before the end of the year.

"Every small business marketer wants to be intentional about their marketing — ideally, marketers should have a marketing calendar.  Truth is, many organizations do not.
It’s 60 days before the end of the year.  There’s still time to take steps to close out the year strong. The following ideas work around any time of year, but help when they are tied to significant dates or celebrations.  Your results may vary, but most of these are fairly easy to do.  If you pick 1 or 2 of these, and do them well, it could change how your business finishes the year."

10 Things You Can Do in the Next 60 Days to Market Your Business and Close More Sales
By Travis Campbell, Small Business Trends

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Don'ts in a Marketing Campaign

Funny but clever article with 4 don'ts in a marketing campaign. Worth reading.

"I apologize for sounding so angry, but these sorts of things give marketers a bad name.  Really, the majority of us are nice people, who work hard, and aren’t rude."

4 Things You Better Not Do In a Marketing Campaign
By Greg Digneo, More Caffeine Please

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