SlideShare a Scribd company logo
“Making Big Ideas
         Happen“
          with
      @Brainzooming
     at #BigIdeas12
1
2
Hays – Rules in
      Search of
    Problems that
     Don’t Exist


3
We help make smart 
    organizations more 
    successful by rapidly:
    • Expanding their
     strategic options and 
    • Creating innovative
     plans they can
     efficiently implement.
4
5
6
• Connecting Big Ideas

• Building on Them

• Making Big Ideas HAPPEN


7
Big Ideas Conference: Mapping Session Ideas

               Very


                          Familiar          Solid
                          Stuff            Lessons
    How Applicable
       Does the
    Content Seem?
                         Not Sure
                        What To Do       Possibilities
                          With It
                Not
               Very
                      Not Very                        Very

                         How Intriguing Is the Content?
8
Links to Articles
9
Danya Cheskis-Gold




10
         Curiosity
DID YOU
     K N OW
         Research and original design by:
     Karl Fisch | Scott McLeod | Jeff Brenman




11
12
using technologies
     that haven’t been invented . . .




13
in order to solve problems
     we don’t even know are problems yet.




14
Knowing Answers
       vs.
 Knowing How to
  Find Answers
15
Questioning
         Listening
     Thinking Critically
         Imagining
16
“What are we
   trying to
   achieve?“
17
Imagining
         Strategic
       Connections to
           Make
     Big Ideas Happen
18
Shared
                                   Elements



                    Similarities




                    Sequential
                   Relationships



                                      Similar
                                      Inputs
        Stark                        & Outputs
     Differences




19
David Raymond



     Fun & Creativity
20
21
Brainzooming Ideas
     •   Use structure.
     •   Keep it fast, furious, & short.
     •   Encourage wild ideas.
     •   Don’t self-censor.
     •   Don’t criticize first.
     •   Generate lots of possibilities.
     •   Capture & save ideas.
22
Kohl Crecelius




     Buy a Hat, Change a Life
23
Distinctive Talents
     • Distinct to you
     • You improve all the time
     • Beneficial to others
     • Source of energy &
       satisfaction
24
“I not only use
     all the brains I have,
     but all I can borrow.“
                - Woodrow Wilson

25
Tara Dowdell




     Diverse Talents
26
Business Experience



             Strategic,
             Innovative
              Thinking

 Creative                 Functional
  Energy                  Expertise
27
28
Eric Stoller




     Social Networking to Talent
29
30
31
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3226/2297165464_bd926a093c.jpg




32
John Lahutsky




     Imagining Possibilities
33
34
35
36
Disruptive Forces



                    Dales
                  Stephens
                  unCollege
37
Change the Way You Look




38
Strategic
     Disruptors

39
Strategic Disruptors
     • A missing feature for someone else?
     • Disrupt significant cost areas?
     • Digitize a physical element, action, service,
       scarce resource, or experience?
     • Create a service from a support capability?
     • More emotion?
     • Smooth demand for resources / capabilities?
     • Turn in-person into remote interactions?
     • Push a big player in a desired market to leave?

40
Cathy Bao Bean




     Functional Generalizations
41
What’s It Like?
       Your                                                                                                           Another
     Situation
                                                                                                      ~
                                                                                                   Fixing things
                                                                                                                      Situation

                                                                                                  Take care of
                                                                                                    customers
                                                                                                  Employ people
                                                                                               Learning takes place
        http://www.ennis-texas.com/Hospital/New%20Hospital/Hospital%20Room%201%20(small).jpg
                                                                                                   Make money
                                                                                                                       http://content.answers.com/main/content/wp/en/d/d6/HomeDepotStorefront.JPG




42
“There's no
      business like
     show business,
     but there are
         several
     businesses like   http://www.nrk.no/img/592775.jpeg


                                           Opphavsrett NRK © 2006




      accounting.“
43
Dayna Steele




     What Lady Gaga Does
44
How would Gaga do it?




             http://topnews.in/light/files/Lady-Gaga_149.jpg




45
Change Your Character
     • Pick an Opportunity and a
       Character / Company

     • List Character’s Behaviors

     • Apply Approaches to Your
       Situation

46
Jason Patrick Sands




      The Magic of the Stage
47
Personal
      Needs or
     Interests
                          Emotion
           Memorability



        Brand as
       the Enabler

48
Persona
     • Imaginary, identified person
     • Specific needs and interests
     • Representative of the
       audience
     • An input for audience needs
49
50
Amber Rose Johnson




      Sharing Your Story
51
Audience
      Needs &
     Interests
                        Your
            Great     Message
            Stories



        Compelling
      Communication


52
Seeking   Think
     Focused   Know
Challenges      Do

53
Fred Rica



     Ask and Answer
54
Recommend
                                                                       • Background
                                                                       • Recommendation
                                                                       • Rationale

     http://images-jp.amazon.com/images/P/067158250X.01.LZZZZZZZ.jpg
                                                                       • Next Steps
55
Molly Barker




     Passion and Accomplishment
56
“What are we
       trying to
       achieve?“
57
Practical           Passionate
        Logical            Imaginative
 Process Oriented      Possibilities Oriented
       Analytical            Creative
     Detail Oriented        Abstract
       Organized           Innovative
     Quantitative          Perceptive
       Technical              Visual
58
Give It Away




59
60
Charlie Todd




     The Irony of Improv(e)
61
Extreme Creativity




62
• Actively solicit input
• Listen closely for info & clues
• Quickly gauge situation’s structure
• Move forward without knowing
• Be spontaneous & use instincts
• Help others co-participate
• Work and build on others’ parts
• Develop multiple talents
• Continually refine
63
Leading Innovation




      http://www.geocities.com/robertsontony/images/photo17.jpg         http://regmedia.co.uk/2006/03/08/google_whiteboard.jpg




                                                                  Really?
64
Eric Qualman




     "If you can dream it, you can do it."
65
66
PMIR
     •Plus
     •Minus
     •Interesting
     •Recommendation
67
68
We help make smart 
     organizations more 
     successful by rapidly:
     • Expanding their
      strategic options and 
     • Creating innovative
      plans they can
      efficiently implement.
69
Taking the


                 Out of
             InNOvation
Mike Brown
70
Make sure
     YOU aren’t
      the NO!
71
72
73
74
75
76
v




77
Blog: www.Brainzooming.com
Email: Mike.Brown@Brainzooming.com
        Twitter: @Brainzooming
         Phone: 816-509-5320
78

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Making Big Ideas Happen Mike Brown - The Brainzooming Group - May 2012 - BigIdeas12

  • 1. “Making Big Ideas Happen“ with @Brainzooming at #BigIdeas12 1
  • 2. 2
  • 3. Hays – Rules in Search of Problems that Don’t Exist 3
  • 4. We help make smart  organizations more  successful by rapidly: • Expanding their strategic options and  • Creating innovative plans they can efficiently implement. 4
  • 5. 5
  • 6. 6
  • 7. • Connecting Big Ideas • Building on Them • Making Big Ideas HAPPEN 7
  • 8. Big Ideas Conference: Mapping Session Ideas Very Familiar Solid Stuff Lessons How Applicable Does the Content Seem? Not Sure What To Do Possibilities With It Not Very Not Very Very How Intriguing Is the Content? 8
  • 11. DID YOU K N OW Research and original design by: Karl Fisch | Scott McLeod | Jeff Brenman 11
  • 12. 12
  • 13. using technologies that haven’t been invented . . . 13
  • 14. in order to solve problems we don’t even know are problems yet. 14
  • 15. Knowing Answers vs. Knowing How to Find Answers 15
  • 16. Questioning Listening Thinking Critically Imagining 16
  • 17. “What are we trying to achieve?“ 17
  • 18. Imagining Strategic Connections to Make Big Ideas Happen 18
  • 19. Shared Elements Similarities Sequential Relationships Similar Inputs Stark & Outputs Differences 19
  • 20. David Raymond Fun & Creativity 20
  • 21. 21
  • 22. Brainzooming Ideas • Use structure. • Keep it fast, furious, & short. • Encourage wild ideas. • Don’t self-censor. • Don’t criticize first. • Generate lots of possibilities. • Capture & save ideas. 22
  • 23. Kohl Crecelius Buy a Hat, Change a Life 23
  • 24. Distinctive Talents • Distinct to you • You improve all the time • Beneficial to others • Source of energy & satisfaction 24
  • 25. “I not only use all the brains I have, but all I can borrow.“ - Woodrow Wilson 25
  • 26. Tara Dowdell Diverse Talents 26
  • 27. Business Experience Strategic, Innovative Thinking Creative Functional Energy Expertise 27
  • 28. 28
  • 29. Eric Stoller Social Networking to Talent 29
  • 30. 30
  • 31. 31
  • 33. John Lahutsky Imagining Possibilities 33
  • 34. 34
  • 35. 35
  • 36. 36
  • 37. Disruptive Forces Dales Stephens unCollege 37
  • 38. Change the Way You Look 38
  • 39. Strategic Disruptors 39
  • 40. Strategic Disruptors • A missing feature for someone else? • Disrupt significant cost areas? • Digitize a physical element, action, service, scarce resource, or experience? • Create a service from a support capability? • More emotion? • Smooth demand for resources / capabilities? • Turn in-person into remote interactions? • Push a big player in a desired market to leave? 40
  • 41. Cathy Bao Bean Functional Generalizations 41
  • 42. What’s It Like? Your Another Situation ~ Fixing things Situation Take care of customers Employ people Learning takes place http://www.ennis-texas.com/Hospital/New%20Hospital/Hospital%20Room%201%20(small).jpg Make money http://content.answers.com/main/content/wp/en/d/d6/HomeDepotStorefront.JPG 42
  • 43. “There's no business like show business, but there are several businesses like http://www.nrk.no/img/592775.jpeg Opphavsrett NRK © 2006 accounting.“ 43
  • 44. Dayna Steele What Lady Gaga Does 44
  • 45. How would Gaga do it? http://topnews.in/light/files/Lady-Gaga_149.jpg 45
  • 46. Change Your Character • Pick an Opportunity and a Character / Company • List Character’s Behaviors • Apply Approaches to Your Situation 46
  • 47. Jason Patrick Sands The Magic of the Stage 47
  • 48. Personal Needs or Interests Emotion Memorability Brand as the Enabler 48
  • 49. Persona • Imaginary, identified person • Specific needs and interests • Representative of the audience • An input for audience needs 49
  • 50. 50
  • 51. Amber Rose Johnson Sharing Your Story 51
  • 52. Audience Needs & Interests Your Great Message Stories Compelling Communication 52
  • 53. Seeking Think Focused Know Challenges Do 53
  • 54. Fred Rica Ask and Answer 54
  • 55. Recommend • Background • Recommendation • Rationale http://images-jp.amazon.com/images/P/067158250X.01.LZZZZZZZ.jpg • Next Steps 55
  • 56. Molly Barker Passion and Accomplishment 56
  • 57. “What are we trying to achieve?“ 57
  • 58. Practical Passionate Logical Imaginative Process Oriented Possibilities Oriented Analytical Creative Detail Oriented Abstract Organized Innovative Quantitative Perceptive Technical Visual 58
  • 60. 60
  • 61. Charlie Todd The Irony of Improv(e) 61
  • 63. • Actively solicit input • Listen closely for info & clues • Quickly gauge situation’s structure • Move forward without knowing • Be spontaneous & use instincts • Help others co-participate • Work and build on others’ parts • Develop multiple talents • Continually refine 63
  • 64. Leading Innovation http://www.geocities.com/robertsontony/images/photo17.jpg http://regmedia.co.uk/2006/03/08/google_whiteboard.jpg Really? 64
  • 65. Eric Qualman "If you can dream it, you can do it." 65
  • 66. 66
  • 67. PMIR •Plus •Minus •Interesting •Recommendation 67
  • 68. 68
  • 69. We help make smart  organizations more  successful by rapidly: • Expanding their strategic options and  • Creating innovative plans they can efficiently implement. 69
  • 70. Taking the Out of InNOvation Mike Brown 70
  • 71. Make sure YOU aren’t the NO! 71
  • 72. 72
  • 73. 73
  • 74. 74
  • 75. 75
  • 76. 76
  • 77. v 77
  • 78. Blog: www.Brainzooming.com Email: Mike.Brown@Brainzooming.com Twitter: @Brainzooming Phone: 816-509-5320 78

Editor's Notes

  1. Brainzooming helps make smart organizations more successful by rapidly:Expanding their strategic options andCreating innovative plans they can efficiently implement.
  2. https://twitter.com/#!/JimmyGlenn711/statuses/203306286828371968
  3. QR Code for Friday Blog Post
  4. DanyaCheskis-Gold Future Belongs to the Curious (3:25)<FHSU – Teaching how to learn>Danya will share her passion and commitment to life-long learning, and a unique perspective on how we all can take ownership over our professional learning and development.DanyaCheskis-Gold is a community builder, networker, recruiter, & all-around scrappy go-getter. For four years, she worked towards changing the face of education for kids in this country as a Teach For America recruitment director. In pursuit of a way to give back on a more global scale, she joined American Jewish World Service’s Global Circle, fell in love with its mission to empower local leaders in their own communities in the ways that make the most sense for them, attended every event they had & now sits on the board of the organization.Danya currently leads the Community Management team at Skillshare, a community marketplace to learn anything from anyone, and is also manages the ed tech startup’s PR and is its education/curriculum expert. She teaches a Skillshare class on storytelling and pitching and has been invited to speak at various conferences/panels on topics ranging from community management, working at an early stage startup, getting what you want, and collaborative consumption.
  5. Interesting related video called “Did You Know 3.0” – put together by a teacher in Colorado teacherHe estimates it’s been viewed million times in it various formsAbout a 5 minutes video set to music with interesting factoids about our world, especially as it relates to educationWill come back to it several timesPulled some rather amazing stats from the video that sum up some of the challenges for education & business-related education in particularhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jpEnFwiqdx8 – Video for Did You Know 3.0Karl Fisch Blog on Did You Know 4.0 http://thefischbowl.blogspot.com/2009/09/did-you-know-40-economist-media.htmlSome other articles:http://www.daemonquest.com/en/research_and_insight/2004/05/01/how_much_information_is_generated_in_the_worldhttp://www.preoccupations.org/2006/01/information_tre.html
  6. We are currently preparing students for jobs that don’t yet exist…
  7. Using technologies that haven’t been invented
  8. in order to solve problems we don’t even know are problems yet.
  9. First perspective is that it’s certainly important to learn facts yet success in an information available word is tremendously tied to knowing how to find potential answers, assess them, and form conclusions.
  10. Everybody’s a Researcher & SkepticOne implication is that everybody’s got to be a researcher or at least have a grasp of basic research skills and how they have to be modified based on the information channels.Researcher Skills – ScanningPattern RecognitionSolving for UnknownsScientific MethodTriangulationError SpottingHave to be own fact checker & editorhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HeuristicHeuristic (pronounced /hjʊˈrɪstɨk/) is an adjective for experience-based techniques that help in problem solving, learning and discovery. A heuristic method is particularly used to rapidly come to a solution that is hoped to be close to the best possible answer, or 'optimal solution'. Heuristics are "rules of thumb", educated guesses, intuitive judgments or simply common sense. Heuristics as a noun is another name for heuristic methods.In more precise terms, heuristics stand for strategies using readily accessible, though loosely applicable, information to control problem solving in human beings and machines.[1]Will spare you the gory details of what I think all the skills are but their foundations are ages old:Being able to ask great, probing questionsActively listening (not always with ears) andJudging information to turn it into something forward looking.4. Master the HUGE 3: Question, Listen, Think Critically
  11. Thursday, August 21, 2008BrainzoomingTM - First QuestionsStart any possibilities-oriented conversation with the question: “What are we trying to achieve?”Explore it fully and settle on an answer before generating possibilities.The brand stands for? Biggest thing to accomplish? Best, most valuable customers? Winning business from? Losing it to? Biggest cost drivers? Most devastating possibilities? Biggest unknowns?What does our brand stand for? What do we most want to accomplish in the business? How would we describe our best, most valuable customers? Who don’t we do business with? Who do we win the most business from and why? Who do we lose the most business to and why? What are the biggest cost drivers in the business? What things would be most devastating (or most embarrassing) if our customers knew about them? What’s the biggest unknown in our business?Feel free to start using questions from the list above. Feel even freer still to comment on other questions you’ve used successfully to identify “what matters.”
  12. http://brainzooming.com/strategic-connections-3-tips-for-identifying-more-opportunities/3289/Describe Your Situation Generally – “Idea Hooks” (Mind Mapping)Relative to anology (What’s this like?)SimilaritiesStark differencesSequential relationshipsShared characteristicsAccept same inputs / resultsThings that have a third thing in common
  13. Strategic Connections – 3 Tips for Identifying More Opportunities16 April ‘10 Someone remarked recently about how well the Brainzooming process identifies strategic connections among apparently disparate items. Taking the best advantage of possibilities and strategic themes is central to the efficiency of what we do.  Our ability to do this creates stronger integration for strategic business initiatives. Finding connections between more things that could make sense together catalyzes the planning process by allowing us to dramatically expand the range of strategic possibilities a client is able to consider.To improve skills at making strategic connections, here are tipsWhen your strategic thinking is focused on multiple ideas, use techniques such as mind mapping which help you to innovatively think through other possibilities the ideas suggest.SimilaritiesStark differencesShared characteristicsSimilar inputs and/or outputs among themSequential relationships between items on each listAs you consider multiple dimensions to your ideas, look for strategic relationships (i.e. things that matter) among them.The more relationships you can consider, the more options you have to find meaningful connections which are compelling relative to your business objective.It takes practice, but these three strategic thinking tips will help you innovatively make more strategic sense of many (often seemingly unrelated) business events.
  14. David Raymond – Philly Phanatic (1:25)David Raymond’s successful stint as a professional mascot began when he was still a student at University of Delaware, six credits shy of receiving his bachelor’s degree in physical education. In 1978 one Philadelphia Phillies intern was trying to show the team management that he was willing to do anything for the team. The Phillies were just looking for a ‘stooge’ to fill their new mascot costume. What they found was a sports entertainment legend.Creating fan adoration, brand leadership, and sponsorship opportunities for the Phillies and the Phanatic for 16 years catapulted Raymond into the world of character branding. As the nation’s leading market consultant for character branding on and off the field, court, and in the board room, Raymond generates MoneyMakingFun™ for over 250 sports teams and companies across the nation.Providing leadership for his character branding company in Newark, Delaware, Raymond now wears the moniker of “Emperor of Fun and Games” at Raymond Entertainment Group (REG). The group offers soup-to-nuts character branding programs that develop market opportunities and plans, costumes, performer development and training, and growth management to generate maximum value from a sports or corporate character.MoneyMakingFun™ has become serious fun for Dave and his partners with the successful roll out of The Fun Department. Since 2006 The Fun Department has been delivering Fun to corporations throughout the tri-state area. “We are out to make corporate America smile one face at a time”, says the Emperor of Fun. The Power of Fun is a message that Dave delivers everyday with Raymond Entertainment and The Fun Department.David has become a popular speaker for marketing, PR and the “self help” industries and has been profiled by CNN, Sports Illustrated, The New York Times and NPR. You can follow him on Twitter @emperoroffun and read his blogs at http://www.raymondeg.com/news/blog/emperor.
  15. When was the last time you asked a kid?
  16. Kohl Crecelius – Buy a Hat, Change a Life (11:30) <Distinctive Talents, Hidden Talents>Social entrepreneur Kohl Crecelius and his team of close friends, Travis, Stewart, and Adam, are on a mission to revolutionize what it means to do business and to do good. As college students in 2007, they founded Krochet Kids intl. (KKi) – a non-profit lifestyle brand focused on empowering communities and engaging customers to make a sustainable impact on global poverty. KKi is a leader in producing and selling products made in Africa. Featured in Bloomberg Businessweek, KKi employs more than 100 people in Northern Uganda through the production of their handmade headwear and fashion accessories and have recently started a new program in Peru. Now spanning three continents, their work connects the producer with the customer through a hand-signed label that accompanies every product. Crecelius’ older brother taught him how to crochet in high school, and soon, he began teaching his friends to make hats. Dubbed the “Krochet Kids” by their local newspaper in Spokane, Washington, the friends began selling hats in their hometown for a little spending money. He never imagined the hobby would blossom into a global movement. Inspired by Stewart’s summer trip to Uganda during college, the trio decided to teach the simple skill of crocheting to displaced Ugandan women. Crecelius and friends envisioned that the women could sell hats they made to provide for themselves, releasing them from the bondage of government camps and history of rebel rule in their country. Through crocheting, the women learn self-reliance and economic independence. Customers are invited to thank the individuals who have crafted their products on KKi’s website: www.krochetkids.org.KKi’s mission is to provide quality, handmade products that not only bring comfort and style, but serve as a vehicle for social change. Believing actions rooted in love produce powerful and lasting change, they strive to help people improve their lives physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Their slogan of, “Buy a hat. Change a Life,” embodies the difference we can all make through a simple act.Yes, Kohl does still crochet. He also has a variety of other interests that keep him grounded, including surfing, skateboarding, and blogging. You can usually find him wearing a KKi beanie and occasionally sporting a mustache.
  17. Tara Dowdell – Leadership Secrets of Steve Jobs (4:55) <Be Your Own Expert>Tara Dowdell was a finalist on NBC’s hit show, The Apprentice, and is a highly accomplished business and political strategist.Tara will use her unique perspectives on leadership that she has acquired over time from a broad range of experiences, to explore the lessons one can learn from revolutionary, Steve Jobs.Tara Dowdell is a highly accomplished business and political strategist.  She is the Founder and Principal of the Tara Dowdell Group, a strategic consulting and marketing firm focused on helping socially-conscious businesses and organizations grow.   Propelled by her work ethic, passion, and extensive network in government, the private sector and the media, the Tara Dowdell Group has cultivated an impressive list of clients ranging from an award-winning “green” real estate development firm to a local government agency that offers programs to help small business owners.In addition to her consulting practice, Tara is a respected television commentator and speaker.  She appears weekly on CNN, the Fox News Channel, and the Fox Business Network where she provides progressive insight and analysis on a range of political, government, and business topics.  She can also be seen and heard regularly on MSNBC, Fox 5’s Good Day New York, WWOR-TV My9 News at 10pm and Hot 97 Street Soldiers.  Tara’s proven expertise, unique insight, and engaging style have also made her a sought-after speaker.  She has addressed several major conferences and organizations such as the Rutgers’ University Annual Women of Color Symposium, the National Urban League Conference, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Women in Science and Engineering, and the Center for American Women in Politics Ready to Run Conference to name a few.Tara has an extensive background in government having previously served as the Senior Manager of Government and Community Relations for the international shipping arm of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.  In this capacity, she was responsible for directing the government and public relations strategy for the multi-billion-dollar redevelopment of the Port of New York and New Jersey.  Prior to joining the Port Authority, Tara served as Director of Appointments in the Office of the New Jersey Governor.  She was appointed to this position at age 25, making her the youngest person and the first African American to serve in this high level role.  As Director of Appointments to then Governor James E. McGreevey, Tara managed the selection, nomination and appointment of individuals to over 550 statewide boards and commissions.  She began her career in government serving as a District Representative to Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr.Aside from her work in government, Tara has a wealth of political experience.  She has served in senior positions on several high profile federal, state, and local campaigns.  Additionally, she managed an issue-advocacy campaign for Emily’s List, one of the largest Political Action Committee’s in the nation.Tara’s accomplishments have not gone unnoticed.  In 2005, after being selected out of over a million applicants, she had the distinction of competing for a job with real estate mogul Donald Trump on the third season NBC’s show, “The Apprentice.”  In 2010, she was selected by the American Swiss Foundation to attend their prestigious Young Leaders Conference in Basel, Switzerland.  Tara was only one of twenty-five Americans chosen to participate in the conference, which was hosted by pharmaceutical giant, Novartis.  Tara has also been honored by the NAACP, the New York Times, the Political Action Committee, BALLOT, and the child advocacy nonprofit organization, Project Re-Direct.Tara is also very active in her community.  She serves on the Steering Committee for the Center for American Women in Politics “Ready to Run” Conference and is a Trustee on Board of the Partnership for a Drug Free New Jersey.  She is also a member of Bethany Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey.  Tara is a graduate of the University of Virginia where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Government.
  18. Eric Stoller – Passionate Radical Practitioners (10:20)<Social Media to Expand Ideas>7 Ways to Be Creative with TwitterEric Stoller is a nationally known thought leader and consultant on using social media in higher education to create connections and enhance communication. As host of Student Affairs Live on HigherEdLive.com, Eric provides LIVE professional development opportunities for practitioners. He served previously as a Marketing Specialist for Student Affairs at the University of Illinois at Chicago and as an Academic Advisor / Web Coordinator for Oregon State University. Eric has over 10 years of student affairs technology experience. He has been blogging for more than 7 years and is the Student Affairs and Technology blogger for Inside Higher Ed (IHE). Eric can be found online at http://ericstoller.com/ and tweeting at http://twitter.com/ericstoller/
  19. 6 Ways Social Networking Platforms Can Boost Creative ThinkingPublished on 03 AugustDiversity – TwitterListening – TwitterGrouping People – Topic (Twitter, Pinterest), Relationship (Twitter, Google+, FB), Self Selected Groupings (LinkedIn)Workshopping Ideas – Anywhere you have an active networkEase of Getting Started6 Ways Social Networking Platforms Can Enhance Creative ThinkingFrom this exploration, here are six important things for me when evaluating a new social network for its creative thinking potential:1. How easy is it to find new, diverse people and prioritize them based on their content’s creative thinking impact?2. In what ways can you organize both homogenous and diverse groups of individuals?3. Can you listen to people, including those you don’t even know, in a variety of ways?4. How readily can the platform allow you to discuss, build upon, and adapt creative ideas?5. Can people you don’t know reach out and share valuable information (while it’s still difficult or impossible for those sharing crap to do the same)?6. How much crap to do I have to duplicate or go through to participate?
  20. 6 Ways Social Networking Platforms Can Boost Creative ThinkingPublished on 03 AugustIt’s now a lot clearer to me why I:Am so oriented toward TwitterHave only begrudgingly embraced FacebookDon’t spend nearly as much time on LinkedIn as it seems I shouldAm more than a little fascinated with using Google+ more effectively6 Ways Social Networking Platforms Can Enhance Creative ThinkingFrom this exploration, here are six important things for me when evaluating a new social network for its creative thinking potential:1. How easy is it to find new, diverse people and prioritize them based on their content’s creative thinking impact?2. In what ways can you organize both homogenous and diverse groups of individuals?3. Can you listen to people, including those you don’t even know, in a variety of ways?4. How readily can the platform allow you to discuss, build upon, and adapt creative ideas?5. Can people you don’t know reach out and share valuable information (while it’s still difficult or impossible for those sharing crap to do the same)?6. How much crap to do I have to duplicate or go through to participate?
  21. Possibilities - It’s All Invented – What was it like before “this” existed? What if “it” had never existed?Benjamin Zander – It’s All InventedMBB Based on Pages 14 & 15 from The Art of Possibility Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin ZanderIt’s All Invented – Implies changing the framework by which you view things. The phrase suggests that perspectives are stories, founded on sets of hidden assumptions. The key is learning to discern these stories so you can break through the barriers they create. In their place, you create other conditions or situations that support what you are envisioning.Ask these questions to practice It’s All Invented: What assumption am I making, that I’m not aware I’m making, that gives me what I see? And when this question is answered, ask: What might I now invent, that I haven’t yet invented, that would give me other choices?http://www.baileyworkplay.com/tag/benjamin-zander/ It’s All Invented…So Have Fun with ItThe first chapter forms the foundation for the rest of the book and centers on the notion that we perceive all that happens around us in very individual ways and then interpret them accordingly. Reality and truth are then very subjective. Once you understand and accept this notion, you have an incredible capacity to act in fresh and powerful ways. They call it “It’s All Invented” and go on to suggest since we have the ability to create new stories, we might as well create ones that enhance the quality of our lives and the lives of those around us.So, what stories are you creating right now? Do they involve you as the lead character who lives a life of drudgery, misfortune, bitterness? Hopefully not, but perhaps its just a blah life in which you yearn for more. What if you decided to create a new story today, one that involves passion, excitement, laughter, [go ahead, fill in the blank]?Remember, it’s all invented so have some fun with it. What do you think?
  22. John Lahutsky – Student, Orphan from Russia (2:05)<Possibilities and Motivation>John was born in Moscow, Russia in 1990.  A preemie who weighed only two pounds at birth, John miraculously survived, despite the questionable level of medical technology available in Russia at that time.  This was the first indication of John’s remarkable spirit, a spirit that allowed him to survive under enormously difficult circumstances in the years to come and to never give up hope for a better future.When John was eighteen months old, his birth parents abandoned him and his six-year-old sister Olga.  The children were separated, with Olga going to one orphanage and John to another.  John languished in the Stalinistic orphanage system which treated him as less than human because of his physical disability resulting from cerebral palsy.  There were valiant attempts by concerned individuals, including Sarah and Alan Philps and a young Russian woman named Vika, to rescue John from this system, a system that placed John in an adult mental asylum at age six.   But it was not until 1999, when he was 9 ½ years old, that John’s life turned around dramatically as he was adopted by Paula Lahutsky who became his mother forever.  They live in Bethlehem Township, Pennsylvania with their chihuahua named Jambo.Currently John is a first year student at Northampton Community College.  He enjoys giving presentations about his life and his book The Boy from Baby House 10.  John is an active member of the Boy Scouts of America and the Order of the Arrow, the Boy Scout honor society.  He has held leadership positions in Boy Scout Troop 362 at East Hills Moravian Church in Bethlehem where he holds the rank of Life Scout.In addition to John’s involvement with his church, school, and Boy Scouts, John enjoys studying history and world civilizations.  His other interests include traveling, vintage television programs, movies both past and present (including James Bond and Harry Potter), college football (Go Penn State!), professional football (E-A-G-L-E-S), golf, and Yankee baseball.  John cherishes his family and friends and notes that out of all his interests and activities, his favorite thing in the world is to spend time with loved ones.
  23. http://ht.ly/aOtmuThe Floppy Disk means Save, and 14 other old people Icons that don't make sense anymore
  24. archaeology.about.com/od/india/ig/India-s-Archaeology/Nalanda-University-Ruins.htmPhoto: Nalanda University Ruins, India Prince Roy (c) 2006 Nalanda University was one of the first universities in the world, founded in the 5th Century BC, and reported to have been visited by the Buddha during his lifetime. At its peak, in the 7th century AD, Nalanda held some 10,000 students when it was visited by the Chinese scholar Xuanzang.Dale Stephens unCOllege – Self-Directed Education (1:10)<Google Fiber – Education Models>Dale J. Stephens brings a unique perspective on the future of education, talent, and innovation.  An educational futurist and speaker on issues facing Generation Y, he delivers core insights about learning, technology, and success.  He is a sought-after education expert appearing on major news networks including CNN, ABC, NPR, CBS, Fox, and TechCrunch. His work has been covered by news outlets from the New York Timesand New York Magazine to Fast Company and Forbes.He has spoken around the world at high-profile events, from debating VivekWadhwa onstage at TED 2012 to lecturing at the New York Times.At 20, Dale leads UnCollege, because we’re paying too much for college and learning too little.  Perigee/Penguin will publish his first book, Hacking Your Education, in early 2013.In May 2011 Stephens was selected out of hundreds of individuals around the world as aThiel Fellow, a program recognizing the top twenty-four entrepreneurs around the world under the age of twenty.Rejected for being young or inexperienced, he has risen above skepticism to do what many said he couldn’t. Because he bridges the gap between teens and adults, he doesn’t just relate to both but shares their experiences, fears, and challenges.Whoever is going to disrupt your market isn’t like you, which makes them really hard to identify right now. Number 1?They may not even be in business yet.That’s a big difference, but it’s not the only one. Here are fourteen other ways whoever is going to disrupt your market isn’t like you, since they:2. Don’t care about preserving anything about what’s made your brand successful.3. Are happy to get a small share of the market at a premium price with a dramatically different offering.4. Are happy to get a bigger share of your market (since it’s related to their market) at a really low price.5. Don’t have any qualms about introducing a product/service and price point combination that’s really tough to compare to anything else your market has been doing.6. Make decisions and move really quickly because the stakes are so much lower for them.7. Can get away with using some, but not all, of the marketing mix to beat you at your own game.8. Compete really effectively by looking at a couple of things (or maybe even only one thing) in a radically different way.9. Don’t have to fund their new venture out of the dollars coming from your market.10. Have figured out a different entry point into the customer model in your industry.11. Don’t (or aren’t) going to look like you in very fundamental ways – size, structure, scope, etc.12. Don’t have to have a complete offering since they’re appealing to a different market segment.13. May have glaring weaknesses compared to traditional competitors (i.e., “you”) in areas traditional competitors think are really important but customers are willing to overlook.14. Will not be focused on delivering the same benefit package you are.15. Are fine with putting together parts and pieces tried and thrown out by others to compete in new ways.
  25. Thursday, February 14, 2008A Poor Question for Valentine’s Day: “Can You Change Your Look?”Look from different perspectives – You’ll notice certain items needing attention that she doesn’t. It usually occurs when I’m doing an unfamiliar activity - putting things away, cleaning, yard work, etc.This same phenomenon happens in business even with things such as opportunities, challenges, and processes. You look at something very closely, maybe because you have responsibility for it. Since you spend so much time with it, you may view it from several perspectives, but all of them VERY close. Still you’re likely missing things that are obvious to others who see what you see from a different vantage point.The key is to be able to actively look at a situation from blatantly different viewpoints. So if I may, here are a few great suggestions for changing how you “look”:Move Further AwayAsk someone completely unfamiliar to observe it and tell you what they think. Change your seat – physically or virtually – and take a few steps back from where you usually “sit” while viewing a situation. What do you see differently?Look CloserLook at only one aspect of a process – repeat “how” and “why” questions (i.e., How is this working? Why does this happen?) until you’ve explored many possibilities for new insights. Look from a Different HeightSpend a day on the front lines with sales, manufacturing, or customer service – what do they see about the process or opportunity that you don’t? Spend time directly with a customer as they interact with your business – how does it look to them? Shadow a senior executive (maybe a mentor) – what regularly makes its way to their level?Look from a Different PerspectiveHave someone else carry out the process – what’s different?Several of these techniques helped diagnose what wasn’t working with a new planning process recently. By having new participants review it, sitting in different seats to observe interaction, and using different facilitators to lead the process, we’ve cut the initial time for the process by 50% and created more-tailored exercises. And we got these results by simply changing how we look.
  26. 1. What feature can you create that’s missing in someone else’s product?2. Where can you disrupt significant cost areas in physical goods?3. How can you digitize a physical element, action, or experience – or digitize all three?4. What steps can you take to create a service out of your strongest / most prevalent support capability?5. How can you inject a completely emotional experience into what you do?6. Ever thought about ways to digitize a service?7. How is it possible to smooth demand for inefficient / difficult to provide capabilities?8. What would it take to turn in-person interactions into remote interactions?9. How can you digitize scarce resources to put them in more places simultaneously?10. What could you do to help push the biggest player in your desired market to leave the marketplace?11. If the most prominent player in you market did go away, what opportunities would it open up?
  27. 1. What feature can you create that’s missing in someone else’s product?2. Where can you disrupt significant cost areas in physical goods?3. How can you digitize a physical element, action, or experience – or digitize all three?4. What steps can you take to create a service out of your strongest / most prevalent support capability?5. How can you inject a completely emotional experience into what you do?6. Ever thought about ways to digitize a service?7. How is it possible to smooth demand for inefficient / difficult to provide capabilities?8. What would it take to turn in-person interactions into remote interactions?9. How can you digitize scarce resources to put them in more places simultaneously?10. What could you do to help push the biggest player in your desired market to leave the marketplace?11. If the most prominent player in you market did go away, what opportunities would it open up?
  28. Cathy Bao Bean – Chopstick Fork Philosophy (1:45) <Distinguish Generalizing from Stereotypes>Cathy Bao Bean is author of The Chopsticks-Fork Principle, A Memoir and Manual and co-author of The Chopsticks-Fork Principle x 2, A Bilingual Reader to promote translingual and transcultural competence in English and Chinese.Formerly a philosophy teacher at Montclair State College and presently the President of the Society for Values in Higher Education,she has served on the boards of Claremont Graduate University School of the Arts and Humanities, NJ Council for the Humanities, and Ridge and Valley Conservancy as well as participated in The Star Ledger Scholarship Committee and planningThe Book Club Show, A Co-production of Burkwood Creative and WNET/WLIW New York. In both her writing and public speaking, she crosses disciplines and mindsets to revel in the playgrounds and minefields of being at least bi-cultural (by ethnicity, gender, and generation). Addressing audiences at a diversity of venues—including the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, KPMG, Hampton University, St. George’s School in RI, Wakulla Correctional Institution in FL, and universities in China—she encourages people to take seriously the idea that only hermits are not at least bicultural and that understanding a culture requires understanding its humor. In doing so, she urges people and institutions to have the courage and curiosity to distinguish generalizing from stereotyping. 
  29. Dayna Steele – 8 Success tips from Lady Gaga (11:00) <Change Your Character, Gaga Post on Brainzooming>Dayna Steele is a serial entrepreneur, media and marketing strategist, nationally recognized radio and TV personality, FastCompany blogger, the author of the best-selling business book Rock to the Top: What I Learned about Success from the World’s Greatest Rock Stars, and a popular motivational business speaker.As a top radio personality, Dayna was named one of the ‘100 Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts’ by Talkers Magazine, nominated as ‘Local Radio Personality of the Year’ by Billboard Magazine and has been inducted into the Texas Radio Hall of Fame.Dayna created The Space Store, the world’s largest space related e-commerce venture, and founded Smart Girls Rock, a social media network and product line to encourage girls to make “smart the new cool.” Dayna’s other venture is Operation National Anthem, a series of free videos of active U.S. service men and women offered to venues throughout the country to play prior to the singing of the United States national anthem.Currently traveling the world with her presentation Find Your Inner Rock Star, Dayna shows individuals and companies how to grow their business and be better than the competition using her Rock Star Principles. Clients who have moved from back stage to center stage include Franchise Source Brands International, , State of Iowa, MLT Vacations, NASA, University of Texas, Christus Health, American Marketing Association, Institute of Real Estate Management, Independent Insurance Agents Association and more. She is currently working on her next book, I’m With the Band: Networking Rock star (Network Your Way into Anything, Anywhere, Anytime!)AOL calls Dayna ‘one of the foremost experts on career networking’ andReader’s Digest Magazine named Dayna one of the ‘35 People Who Inspire Us.’Dayna lives in Seabrook, Texas with her husband, author Charles Justiz, and has three sons. She is a member of the National Speakers Association, Screen Actors Guild and American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.
  30. Jason Patrick Sands (10:40) <Play a Role with a Script and Experience – Create Experience for Audience>JASON PATRICK SANDS: Broadway: Chicago (Billy Flynn/Amos Hart), A Chorus Line (Don), Legally Blonde, The Producers. National tour: Chicago (Billy Flynn). Film and television: Kinsey, The Producers, “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” Graduate of the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music (BFA).
  31. Imaginary, but identified personHave specific needs and interestsCharacteristics representative of the audienceWill want to use them as an input when thinking about audience needs
  32. Amber Rose Johnson – 18 year old…Natl Advisory Council, Violence Against Women (4:30) <Surround yourself with diverse talent>Amber Rose Johnson is an 18-year old poet and member of the National Advisory Committee on Violence Against Women.A first year student at Tufts University in Medford, Mass., Johnson has received several awards for her writing. She is the 2011 National Poetry Slam Youth Champion, and the winner of the 2010 Poetry Out Loud National Recitation Contest.
  33. Social Media Content Ideation: Think – Know – DoPublished on 20 December 2010 Potl B2B blog topics? Subjects the audience is:Seeking info aboutFocused on professionallyChallenged w/ in their careers.Whether creating social media content for yourself or for an organization you support, here’s an easy-to-use strategic thinking exercise for generating relevant topic ideas. Consider three vital areas:What do you Think?What do you Know?What do you Do?Consider your target audience’s needs and interests as a backdrop. Then use Think, Know, and Do as starters for three mind mapsto help explore a range of social media content ideas.Working with Nate Riggs at Social Business Strategies, we used this exercise with a business-to-business service client recently as part of developing content strategy for its collaborative blog. The organization’s new social media team generated nearly 140 separate topic ideas in just 15 minutes. We accomplished this by having small groups rotating among the mind maps and building on ideas already generated. We had the team use a variety of other exercises as well to quickly generate more than a year’s worth of blog topic ideas in a very short period of time.
  34. Monday, December 10, 2007Improve the Success of Your Letters to Santa - Guaranteed!Dear Kids,Just like your management team at work, Santa’s very busy this time of year, and while he’d love to spend time with each letter, there are only so many hours in the work day.Want to make sure Santa gets the point of your request so that you’re not disappointed this holiday season? Take a tip from “Winning with the P&G 99: 99 Principles and Practices of Procter Gambles Success” by Charles Decker and send him a brief (one-page at most) recommendation making it clear very quickly to Santa how good you’ve been and what you’d like. Here’s the 4-section recommendation format to use:Brief Background – Provide a quick overview of the issue that your recommendation is addressing so that your boss (I mean Santa) knows what you’re covering. Recommendation – Clearly & succinctly state what you think should be done. Rationale – List the reasons that support why the thing that you think should happen should happen. Next Actions – If the recommendation's accepted, list out the next things that have to take place.Let’s apply the approach (sans the headers that you'd use in a business memo) to our holiday letter:Btw - if you’re still doing holiday shopping, Amazon lists copies of the “P&G 99” for $1.89. That’s less than 2 cents per principle or practice – you won’t find a cheaper gift that will so dramatically improve your staff’s performance this coming year! Order now!!!
  35. Molly Barker – Putting Your Passion to Work (11:50) <Change-Creation and Management>Founder and Visionkeeper of Girls on the Run InternationalFirst of all, Molly Barker is real:  Informal, genuine, and comfortable just about anywhere.  Her personal mission: In her words, to “inspire people to recognize and activate their potential. Through her inspirational non-profit, Girls on the Run (www.girlsontherun.org), Barker engages more than 160,000 people in more than 190 cities across North America in an effort to help girls break free of the “Girl Box.”  The messages of the “Girl Box” vary, but the overarching theme comes from a cultural belief that girls and women must conform to a set of standards that are often unattainable and dangerous to our health and well-being.Barker is rapidly becoming a well-known agent of change, whose authentic style is contagious, uplifting, and warm. She is the author of Girls on Track: A Parent’s Guide to Inspiring our Daughters to Achieve a Lifetime of Self-Esteem and Respect, and the children’s book, “Girls Lit from Within: A Guide to Life Outside the Girl Box.” The winner of the Heroes of Running Award from Runner’s World, Barker’s work has been honored by Redbook Magazine, Woman’s Day Magazine, and she has been featured in Forbes, as well as in numerous newspapers and on national TV shows.You might think that competing in her third Hawaii Ironman Championship would have been enough to overcome the struggles she’d faced since 15, when she found herself viewing the world from within the “Girl Box”. The “Girl Box,” a phrase Barker coined, describes the filter or context many girls begin to use around middle school where, in her words, “we sadly give up on our real selves and desperately cling to behaviors, people and things that we think will somehow help us measure up to what are truly unattainable cultural and internal standards.”On July 6th 1993, at age 32, Barker hit bottom. Her wish to simply “disappear” ended in what she was sure would be a final phone call to her big sister.  The following day, she took off on a sunset run.  At mile five of her six-mile run, she experienced a profound, life-changing epiphany and the inspiration she received became Girls on the Run International. Combining her counseling and teaching expertise with research on adolescent issues, she developed and delivered the first curriculum with 13 girls in Charlotte, North Carolina.Starting with this strong foundation, Barker’s idea is to create a grassroots social movement, which provides girls and women with the tools and the courage to see, unravel from, and eliminate their own and often unconscious buy-in to the “Girl Box” and its limiting messages.  Only then will a world where all girls and women are able to recognize and achieve their greatest human potential emerge.Barker lives in Charlotte, North Carolina. She is passionate about her work but is most inspired by her two children.
  36. Thursday, August 21, 2008BrainzoomingTM - First QuestionsStart any possibilities-oriented conversation with the question: “What are we trying to achieve?”Explore it fully and settle on an answer before generating possibilities.The brand stands for? Biggest thing to accomplish? Best, most valuable customers? Winning business from? Losing it to? Biggest cost drivers? Most devastating possibilities? Biggest unknowns?What does our brand stand for? What do we most want to accomplish in the business? How would we describe our best, most valuable customers? Who don’t we do business with? Who do we win the most business from and why? Who do we lose the most business to and why? What are the biggest cost drivers in the business? What things would be most devastating (or most embarrassing) if our customers knew about them? What’s the biggest unknown in our business?Feel free to start using questions from the list above. Feel even freer still to comment on other questions you’ve used successfully to identify “what matters.”
  37. http://brainzooming.com/creating-change-and-change-management-four-strategy-options/11571/
  38. Charlie Todd – Shared Experience of Absurdity Talk – Improv (3:45) <Building on Things, Brainstorming & Improv/Creativity>Charlie will use examples from ImprovEverywhere’s notorious “missions” like the No Pants Subway Ride, and Black Tie Beach to talk about his commitment to bringing people together through a shared experience of absurdity. Charlie will also answer live questions from the audience about his talk, experiences and perspectives.Bored by a temp job, and tired of waiting for someone to give him a stage, comedian Charlie Todd decided to make his own. So he walked into a bar and pretended to be musician Ben Folds. It went so well that it inspired him to create Improv Everywhere, “a New York City-based prank collective that causes scenes of chaos and joy in public places.”Todd has, produced, directed, performed, and documented the group’s work for over ten years. In that time they’ve run over 100 ‘missions,’ some involving hundereds or thousands of ‘agents,’ each one creating a wonderful and irreproducible experience.He is also a performer at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in New York City, and is the author of Causing a Scene, a book about Improv Everywhere published by Harper Collins.Causing a Scene is the behind-the-scenes story of Improv Everywhere, with an in-depth look at some of our most successful pranks over the past eight years.Improv Everywhere (often abbreviated IE) is a comedic performance art group based in New York City, formed in 2001 by Charlie Todd. Its slogan is "We Cause Scenes."The group carries out pranks, which they call "missions", in public places. The stated goal of these missions is to cause scenes of "chaos and joy." Some of the group's missions use hundreds of performers and are similar to flash mobs, while other missions utilize only a handful of performers. Improv Everywhere has stated that they do not identify their work with the term flash mob, in part because their site was created two years prior to the flash mob trend.[1]Improv Everywhere has been profiled by many national and international media outlets including The New York Times, The Today Show, and ABC's Nightline.[2][3] Todd was interviewed on an episode of This American Life in 2005. While touching briefly on two missions ("No Pants" and "The Moebius"), the show focused on "Best Gig Ever" and "Ted's Birthday", and how they created unintended reactions. Improv Everywhere was also featured in the pilot episode for This American Life's television show on Showtime.[4] In 2007, the group shot a television pilot for NBC.[5]
  39. An improv comic: Actively solicits input from the audience and others around them Listens closely to other participants for information & clues Quickly assesses the underlying structure of the situation Becomes comfortable with not being able to figure things out ahead of time Is open to spontaneity Depends on instincts Offers information and clues to others to help them co-participate successfully Works with and builds on information supplied by others Is able to employ a variety of talents to advance the situation Refines the process as new information is determined
  40. Erik Qualman – Becoming Digital Leaders (3:05) <Tell Your Own Story…Your Institution’s Story>Erik Qualman is Author of the Best Selling books Socialnomics and Digital LeaderErik will share his passion for Social Media and make the case for everyone in the audience to start thinking about new ways they can become Digital Leaders.Called a Digital Dale Carnegie, Erik Qualman is the author of Socialnomics: How social media transforms the way we live and do business. Socialnomics made Amazon’s #1 Best Selling List for the US, Japan, UK, Canada, Portugal, Italy, China, Korea and Germany. Socialnomics was a finalist for the “2010 Book of the Year” awarded by the American Marketing Association. Fast Company Magazine listed him as a Top 100 Digital Influencer. He also has one of 2010′s most viral videos on YouTube in “Social Media Revolution.”Qualman is a frequently requested International speaker and has been highlighted in numerous media outlets including: BusinessWeek, The New York Times, WSJ, Mashable, USA Today, Financial Times, Forbes, Fortune, CBS Nightly News, and The Huffington Post.
  41. Brainzooming helps make smart organizations more successful by rapidly:Expanding their strategic options andCreating innovative plans they can efficiently implement.
  42. And Taking the NO Out of InNOvation is all about how we can silence those voices to grow our creativity.Presentation has been billed as “Taking the NO Out of InNOvation”Take no out from Cultivating differencesExperimentationCelebrating Only Rules Followers
  43. Monday, November 17, 2008 - Creative Quickie - A Squirrelly StoryOf our three pumpkins this year, we only carved one. Another was already rotten, and while the third, which our neighbor gave us, looked great, we decided to simply put it uncarved on the porch.Squirrels began eating the two pumpkins immediately, starting with the one I carved. The design was ruined within one night. After Halloween, they started in earnest on the uncarved pumpkin.On the way to church Sunday morning, I joked with my wife that we should take a funny picture of the pumpkin since, based on the design, we obviously hadthe stupidest, most uncreative squirrels in the world.Yesterday afternoon, taking pictures from different angles, it was apparent that maybe I hadn’t given our squirrels enough credit. Looking at the pumpkin from a different vantage point, it seemed our squirrels might be more creative than originally suspected.Turning the pumpkin on its side, it was clear that our very smart, very innovative squirrels had made a creative decision to carve the pumpkin from an alternative angle, using the stem as the pumpkin’s nose.All of a sudden, I felt intense pride in our Prairie Village squirrels! This squirrelly story’s moral? How often do all of us make quick judgments and suspect something’s bad simply because we don’t share someone else’s creative sensibilities? Probably way too many times. Next time you think there’s nothing creative in what’s been presented to you, hold your opinion, listen to your creative team member, see the creation from their view, and find out if maybe, just maybe, your first impression was wrong!