Monday, April 21, 2014

Use the senses

It is amazing what sense memory kids have. A snowflake on the tongue lasts a lifetime.

It is equally amazing that we assume kids are the only ones to experience /re-experience sense memory. How many of us re-caught a snowflake in the first paragraph?

Sense memory can be a terrific way to engage folks during change or a negotiation. Getting them to ‘feel’ a vision can create an easier path to buy-in. Talking about a project roadmap and projecting the image of a hiking trail… or asking for a budget for a bakery and offering a taste of the product… negotiating a new car and bringing the lipstick in red to represent the paint job… it all triggers memory, emotion and participation (though you can’t always control if the memory is a good one).

Augusto Boal made the world sit up, bringing his audience’s senses into the performances that passed into Brazillian bills of law. Mixed Theatre Company follows his footsteps here in Canada. Executives and sales people do it every day with product samples, music, question & answer periods, town halls, working dinners and hand written thank you cards.

Engage your network with something to touch, to hear, to taste… use metaphors; send cards; break bread. Spread the message across the senses.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Innovation... thoughts

Innovation /innovative thinking is a way to bring creativity and meaning to a problem or approach. There does not have to be a need for change or a call to action for which innovating can be a retroactive approach. Rather innovation often comes before there is a need and thus those who think ahead may experience a greater share of push back from those who are content with the unbroken/broken status quo.

Innovation is not necessarily the same as invention. An invention can be a net new concept whereas innovation can be a better use of the same invention. Innovation is different from improvement because improvements as incremental changes to the existing structure whereas innovation asks 'what's the ideal'?

Innovation isn't scary. Inertia is.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Just say hello

In a world where everything is described with superlatives, it appears that only a grand gesture will get you attention.

Not true.

Just say hello. Say it in grocery store lines, at coffee shops, during breaks and in elevators. You don't need to be clever or funny, just sincere. Say hello; listen to the response if you ask a question; don't keep walking by if you ask them a question (even "how are you?").

Write one email a day to someone just to say hello.

That's networking at its finest. That's staying connected. No transaction; no request. Just let someone know you were thinking of them.