Weekend reads – 27/28 April

What can businesses learn from social movements?
In this article for the Rotman Magazine Paula Goldman and Suzanne Gibbs Howard show how social movements are helping for-profit companies to thrive. They share a variety of cases to illustrate their four main points that any marketing manager must know about. The article can be read here [pdf].
Tags: #social-media, #marketing, #community-management

From horse and carriage to Apollo 11
To really innovate, and change the way we think of transport from horse and carriage to rockets that bring people to the moon, you need to think laterally, argue Ian Gonsher and Deb Mills-Scofield in this Harvard Business Review blog post.
Tags: #innovation, #design-thinking

Shift perspective, find possibilities
We continuously frame what we see, hear, feel, do. The framing helps us interpret the world around us. But it also limits the things we see. And therefore it limits the possibilities we see for finding solutions. In this great article, Tina Seelig shows us what reframing means, how it helps to unlock innovations, and even gives us some exercises to practice shifting perspectives.
Tags: #innovation, #reframe, #understanding, #management

Are you responsive enough on social media?
One thing we tend to forget about technology, especially in the social media sphere, is that it should support human behaviour. And I believe that social media technologies are basically doing that, and increasingly in a way that facilitates what we humans want to do. Share photos with our friends, tell your followers what you think is interesting to read, or simply chat. And all that preferably in real-time. Joshua-Michéle Ross from O’Reilly Media argues, in this first post in a series, that one thing companies should do is design their social media efforts to be responsive.
Tags: #social-media, #management

Weekend reads

Start your new work week inspired on Monday, and find some time to read these posts this weekend.

Driving innovation
In this post on the HBR Blogs, David Duncan from Innosight shares how they helped a children’s hospital in Canada to drive innovation: Driving Front Line Innovation in Health Care.
Tags: #innovation, #healthcare

Mobile technology to the rescue
Amnesty International shares about their experience with open innovation on OpenIDEO, and how that translated into a concept that makes the lives of activists in difficult places safer: How to turn a mobile phone into an alert system for activists.
Tags: #innovation, #open-innovation, #social-impact, #OpenIDEO

Conversations on air travel
Finnair and Helsinki Airport ran two ‘seasons’ of the Quality Hunters project, in which selected travelers flew around the world to find opportunities for service improvement. It was a wonderful, and award-winning, way of doing open innovation. Now, they’re continuing the Quality Hunters project with a new way of discovering improvement opportunities, with an open platform. Join the discussion, for example in this discussion about planning your travel.
Tags: #travel, #open-innovation

Analyse your competition
Justice Mitchell outlines a great tool to help organise the analysis of the social media activity of your competition. And he gives some great sources to get data from as well. The tool is there, now you just have to use it: Data touch points in your social marketing audit.
Tags: #analysis, #social-media

2013 Time 100
For the tenth time, Time releases their list of the 100 most influential people. Always interesting, and inspiring. Who are the ones leading us, who are changing the way we do business, learn, play, be entertained? Time magazine says it’s these 100 people. Who has inspired or influenced you most this year?
Tags: #leadership, #management

Four themes of disruption you should be aware of
Altimeter group does great open research on the impact of new technologies on business. In this post, they describe four disruption themes, and the trends and technologies that are going to rock our world in the next few years. Be sure to stay on top of these themes, trends and technologies.
Tags: #business, #management, #digital, #innovation

Five questions about OpenIDEO

Recently, I was selected as the End Atrocity Challenge Community Champion on OpenIDEO. Some of you might have read some of my previous posts here about the OpenIDEO platform, and those of you who follow me on Twitter might have seen quite some tweets the last weeks referring to the platform. So, I thought it would be a good time to share a bit about my passion for this open innovation platform here, by answering five questions you might have.

1. What is OpenIDEO?
As the tagline says it on the website, OpenIDEO is a place ‘where people design better, together’. This designing is done in challenges, that each follow the Human Centered Design principles of IDEO. Every challenge aims to look at a social issue, formulated in a central question, and find solutions for it. Sometimes, these challenges are quite specific in terms of locality, but even then the users are asked to come up with ideas that can be used anywhere.
Some examples of challenges are:

  • How can we raise kids’ awareness of the benefits of fresh food so they can make better choices?
  • How might we improve maternal health with mobile technologies for low-income countries?
  • How might we increase the number of registered bone marrow donors to help save more lives?
  • How might we restore vibrancy in cities and regions facing economic decline?

The current challenge is looking for ways to end and prevent atrocities, by looking at the question: ‘How might we gather information from hard-to-access areas to prevent mass violence against civilians?

2. How does it work?
The nice people at IDEO have made a great video about that, which answers this question better than I ever could.

3. What is your involvement with it?
I am an entusiastic user of the site. I joined during the healthy food challenge in August 2010, and have participated in most challenges. In some more than others, of course, depending on the time I could spend. Currently, as mentioned above, I was selected as the Community Champion. This is a volunteer role, which takes me about 4 hours per week. One of the things I do as the Community Champion, is making video blogs with challenge updates and a bit of ‘how to’ information on use of the platform.

4. Who can join?
OpenIDEO is a true open innovation platform, which means everybody can join in. And that is exactly what happened. I suspect that a large part of the almost 50.000 users are from the US and Western Europe, but there are also users from South America, Asia, Africa and Australia and New Zealand. There are men and women, most age groups are represented (although I think it’s mainly 20 and up, I have seen teenagers join in), and there’s a plethora of occupations. OpenIDEO is currently also used by several schools and universities to teach classes, so many students are also taking part. In short: OpenIDEO is a vibrant, multi-demographical community. And you’ll fit right in!

5. What happens with the concepts and ideas?
In true Open Innovation Style, all contributions to the platform are in the public domain. That includes the Ideas for solutions. Anybody can take one, or more, of these Ideas and Concepts and start implementing them to solve a social issue. One quite fresh example is the Made in Lower East Side, or miLES, project, that was contributed as a concept to the site, and then implemented by the team behind it. Another example is the MyFailTale website, which aims to help (young) entrepreneurs to learn from the mistakes from others. Recently, Tim Brown, the president and CEO of IDEO, shared the story of a Doctor in Colombia, who is taking all winning concepts from a challenge, and implements them to improve healthcare in underserved parts of his country.
By now, after almost three years, OpenIDEO has become a repository of wonderful Ideas, that are waiting for people to take them, implement them and have real impact on the world. You could be one of them.