Storytelling at Work
July 31, 2017
The Dalai Lama Speaks

Slide19.jpg

Idea Champions
MitchDitkoff.com
My book on storytelling

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 12:01 AM | Comments (0)

July 28, 2017
Steve Jobs on Storytelling

Slide29.jpg

My book on storytelling
Sparking innovation through storytelling
Storytelling and big hairy ideas
The mothership

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 04:20 PM | Comments (0)

July 25, 2017
Kahili Gibran on Storytelling

Slide12.jpg

Storytelling at Work
MitchDitkoff.com

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 12:20 AM | Comments (0)

July 21, 2017
Why Tell Stories?

Wizard Storyteller copy.jpg
In the last 60 seconds, here's what happened:

168 million emails were sent, 700,000 Google searches were launched, and 60 hours of YouTube videos were uploaded, not to mention all the spam, banner ads, phone calls, Facebook posts, tweets, texts, and telemarketing calls that found their way to your doorstep.

A whopping 90% of all data in the world has been generated in the past two years alone. Think about this: Before the dawn of civilization, approximately 5 exabytes of information had been created. Now, that much information is created every two days!

The common term for this head-spinning phenomenon is "information overload" -- the inability to absorb and process all of the information we are exposed to.

And while the gory statistics change every nanosecond, the results are the same -- leading to what is increasingly being referred to as "Information Fatigue Syndrome" (IFS) -- a condition whose symptoms include poor concentration, depression, burnout, hostility, compulsive checking of social media, and falling into trance-like states.

WorriedLady.jpg

This describes the mindset of many, if not all, of the people you are attempting to influence on a day-to-day basis, be they customers, clients, friends, voters, volunteers, children, or your mother-in-law.

If you are committed to delivering a meaningful, memorable message to another human being, the burning question you need to be asking is this: "How can I cut through all of the background noise so my message can heard and remembered?"

Fear not. It's possible. According to neuroscientists, psychologists, theologians, sociologists, advertisers, linguists, and marketers, the answer is a simple one: storytelling.

Storytelling is the most effective, time-tested way to transmit meaning from one human being to another. It's been going on since the beginning of time when our first ancestors stood around the tribal fire. It's how civilizations pass on their wisdom to the next generation. It's how religions pass on the sacred teachings of their faith. And it's how parents, via the telling of fairy tales, transmit the values they want to impart to their children.

Here are just a few of the reasons why storytelling is so powerful:

It quickly establishes trust and connection between the speaker and listener.

It increases receptivity, captures attention, engages emotions, and allows the receiver to participate, cognitively, in the narrative.

SageCartoon.jpg

It communicates values, not just skills, decreases teaching time, builds community, ignites five more regions of the brain than mere fact giving, helps people make sense of their world, shapes perceptions via the subconscious mind, reframes frustration, paradox, and suffering, changes behavior, and provides a dependable way for people to remember, retrieve, and retell a meaningful message.

Think about a message you want to communicate to someone today. How might you do that via story, instead of overloading them with more information, statistics, and pep talks?

Excerpted from Storytelling at Work
My newly launched storytelling blog
PODCAST: Storytelling at Work

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 11:39 PM | Comments (0)

July 16, 2017
French Camembert

250px-Camembert.JPG

As the story goes, camembert was originally created in 1791 by Marie Harel, a dairy farmer from Normandy upon receiving some advice from a Catholic priest from Brie. It's unique smell has been variably described as funky, earthly, mushroom-like, foul, stinky, nauseating, and the secret project of a chemical company.

Camembert, one of France's most popular cheeses, is made from unpasteurized milk and is rich in chemicals like ammonia, sodium chloride, and succinic acid. It is rated, by a leading food blog, as the second stinkiest cheese in the world, just behind Pont l'Evesque. Even when it's wrapped in its fashionable French box and the box is contained within an unfashionable plastic container in the refrigerator, it still stinks to high heaven.

If you've never tried it, here's all you need to know: Camembert is to American Cheese as Lady Gaga is to Marie Osmond. Got it, mon ami?

Camembert, in France, is something of a cult. It isn't just consumed, it's worshiped -- talked about, I would say, a whole lot more than Jesus. That is, IF the past two weeks of me visiting my French relatives is any indication.

In America, where I come from, cheese is something to slap on a hamburger or serve to guests before a meal so they don't get cranky. In France, cheese is served after the meal. It is not a snack. It is not an appetizer. Mon dieu! Au contraire! It is a complete and total course unto itself -- a highly purposeful serving of seriously shopped-for food that is served between the meal and the dessert.

As an occasional visitor to France, what I find most astounding about camembert is not its royalty status in the French cheese world, but its capacity to bridge the inter-generational gap.

19264405_10154657552816629_6467446731431027027_o.jpg

Put three generations of French people around the dinner table -- all with very different tastes in music, fashion, technology, and politics -- and, with the presence of camembert on the table, you will soon begin to experience a fascinating phenomenon. As people get their first whiff of the round, soft, runny, buttery, glowing wheel of divinity, all other conversations cease. Where only seconds before people were arguing about the economy, the weather, or Donald Trump, now a kind of harmonic resonance can be palpably felt. All eyes are on the cheese. All conversations are about the cheese. Deeply felt reflections on past cheese experiences fill the room.

Bottom line, the camembert has become the sun around which all the rest of us revolve. The aches and pains of my 90-year old mother-in-law? Whether to pick up the phone each of the 35 times she calls every day? Poof! Dissolved in thin air! Fini!

Only camembert remains.

My book of stories

My next book of stories
My website
Seven more stories from this series here

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 05:18 AM | Comments (0)

July 15, 2017
She Doesn't Leave Her House All That Much Anymore

IMG_1857.jpg

She doesn't leave her house much any more. Sometimes, yes, but not very often. Sunday is her big day out. That's when Joelle, her youngest, now a grandmother herself, picks her up at 5:00 and brings her home -- just a 3-minute drive in a small, white car Henriette used to enter and exit with less difficulty, her right leg needing now a bit more time before the passenger door can close.

Everyone in the family is always happy to see her, taking turns kissing her cheeks and easing the short distance to her favorite couch where she sits and lets out a sound only the French can translate. She is happy to be here -- the table being set in the next room, the flurry of activity in the kitchen, her three great-grandchildren fighting over a toy on the floor just a few feet away.

Other days, her balcony is as far as she gets. There, in her freshly ironed skirt and blouse, she stands behind the flower boxes and simply observes. The roses by the front gate have opened wider since yesterday. The neighbor, two houses down, has a shiny new car. The mailman walks across the street. It is good here on her balcony. Very good. It's flat and she can hold on to the handrail. And while, indeed, sometimes the handrail is wet from last night's rain, Henriette doesn't seem to mind, her petunias no longer needing to be watered.

naneeMitch.JPG

No one knows how long she stands there on her balcony, what with everyone else's coming and going. And nobody needs to know. It's enough they wave and call her name. It's enough they bring her chocolate and quiche and sit in her living room to talk. Not every day, mind you. That would be too much. No. Just enough to restore her faith in God.

Most of Henriette's neighbors have known her for 20 years. Some have known her for 30. They all still have the colorful hats and scarves she knitted for them back in the day -- the ones they do their best to wear in late autumn when the weather turns cold.

My book of stories

My website
My poetry blog

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 09:24 AM | Comments (0)

July 13, 2017
Written Watercolors from France

IMG_1884.JPG

For the past two weeks I've been living in France with my wife, Evelyne, helping to care for my 90-year old mother-in-law. It has been a very moving journey -- so much so, that an entire new dimension of storytelling has emerged for me. "Written watercolors," I like to think of them, sketches of the timeless human spirit as the body starts to age. Each of the stories will take you less three minutes to read, but the feeling contained within I hope will stay with you forever.

The Sign

The Table
Waving Goodbye to Henriette
My Mother-in-Law's Basement
The Phone in France
Jean's Wine Cellar
She Doesn't Leave Her House All That Much Anymore
French Camembert

IMG_8210.JPG

My website
My book of stories
My coaching service

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 01:53 PM | Comments (1)

The Table

IMG_1901.JPG

This is the cement table, my wife's father, Jean Pouget, built with his own two hands, 40 years ago in the French countryside -- a place for him to sit and sip aperitifs after work. Sometimes he sipped alone, sometimes with his wife, Henriette, now my 90-year old mother-in-law. The base and top were made from a mold and so were the sections of the small patio on which it rests, now all at odd angles to each other, like neighbors who no longer speak. The mosaic tiles, on top, are not exactly where he placed them, the grout having long ago come undone, so many storms having come and gone. Henriette, dear sweet Henriette, is no longer able to make her way down from the front porch to the table. She's not walking as well as she used to and she doesn't want to fall. So the tiles just sit there, sharp pieces of a puzzle no one puts together. Time has moved on... and so has Jean -- a man I have never met, but feel him, today, sitting next to me, like a rock, the last few rays of light finding their way through the tree tops where the two of abide.

MitchDitkoff.com

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 04:38 AM | Comments (0)

My Dad Loved Plaid

This just in from a long-time friend of mine, Cathy Deutsch:

19820948_10211456611324637_1285278960_o.jpg

My father was a garmento. He worked on 36th Street in the very heart of the garment industry for over 40 years and had a passionate love of plaid. His name was Stan and all who knew him called him "Dapper Stan". He wore plaid shirts almost every day. Not flannel, as he was no lumberjack, but crisp beautiful shirts from the menswear department at Macy's which was just up the street from his office.

Every day or so he would come home from work with a Macy's bag with yet another plaid shirt. When I was a little girl of maybe 9 or 10 I remember going school-clothes shopping at A & S with both my parents. I fell in love with a plaid jumper. When I came out of the fitting room, all excited, he inspected the seams.

"The plaids don't match up", he said and wouldn't let me buy the dress. He felt quality at any price was important and taught me to look for small details.

He never set foot in Barneys or Bergdorfs, but boy did he have style! When he was a young man, he had his suits made in Chinatown because they got the pleats on the pants just right and he had all my mother's clothing, for special occasions, custom-made at one of his showrooms.

Sadly, my father passed 15 years ago. We honored his love of plaid by laying him to rest in his very favorite plaid shirt and khaki trousers. I miss him, terribly, every day and always feel him over my shoulder looking at seams and details when I do my buying. If he were still with us today, I would treat him to a Burberry. He would have loved it -- after inspecting the seams, of course!

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 04:20 AM | Comments (0)

July 12, 2017
Jean's Wine Cellar

wineJean (1).jpg

It all began in Paris. That's where Mr. Boulet, the wine merchant, would knock at the front door and sit with Evelyne's father, Jean, once a month and talk about all things oenophilic -- the uncorking, the flavor bouquet, and the best buys of the season being just a few of them. Mr. Boulet, a rather large man with shiny black shoes, would pass his knowledge on to Jean, one sip at a time, and then, just before dinner, with great respect and a joke or two, make his best attempt to sell, he too having a family to support. Evelyne, only seven at the time, watched from across the room, her mother in the kitchen or, if someone's button had fallen off that day, sewing nearby.

When Evelyne turned ten, her father, having just been promoted, moved the whole kit and kaboodle to Strassbourg, 397 kilometers away from Mr. Boulet, but fortunately, deep in the heart of Alsace, the region, some Alsacians like to say, that's the birthplace of France's finest wines. For the entire time Jean lived in Strassbourg, he never bought a single bottle from a store. Not once. He couldn't. He wouldn't. Only from a vineyard would he buy, needing to be close to the source.

Wine, always better than the weather in Alsace, was much more than a hobby for Jean. It was, a kind of layman's sacrament -- an alchemical blend with a nose, the fruit of God's green earth and his own unquenchable effort to master something wonderful in this world.

In 1965, Jean Charles Pouget built his first and only wine cellar. That's when he moved the family West to the village of Courcelles-Chaussy. Once a year, in August, he would drive the 14 hours to his mother's farm in Aveyron, his wife in the front seat, his daughters in the back, and there, on that farm, they would stay for 30 days and nights. Evelyne and Joelle lived in the attic with their three cousins, jumping from bed to bed and taking turns looking out the only window to the fields below. Sometimes they would see their grandmother twist a chicken's neck until it moved no more. Sometimes they would see her, barehanded, pull nettles from the ground.

At the end of the month, on his way back home, Jean would stop once or twice at selected vineyards and buy a case of the best wine he could afford. Later that night, he'd carry both his girls from the car to their beds, then the wine to the cellar. Bergarac was always positioned top left, Gaillac below it. Cotes du Rhone was in the middle, Bourgueil and Gris de Tohl always on the right, each shelf marked with a small paper label in his own script -- the only handwriting that remains of this man today.

IMG_2010.JPG

Sometimes, Jean would invite Evelyne into the cellar to help him turn the bottles so no sediment would form. A few feet behind him was a hutch, it's hard-to-open drawers now filled with corks. On the highest shelf is a large jar of dried mushrooms, one Evelyne's mama can no longer remember. In the middle of the room sits an old tree stump -- the place where Jean sawed wood in winter to carry upstairs and feed the fire -- sitting as he did with Henriette, and sometimes, his daughters, sipping wine from that night's selection. You can still see the groove in the tree stump from all his many cuts.

More of my stories
MitchDitkoff.com
Unspoken Word

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 01:56 AM | Comments (0)

July 09, 2017
The Phone in France

IMG_1945.JPG

The phone in Evelyne's sister's house, in France, rings 25 times a day at least, the calls always from the same person, Henriette, her mother, who lives less than a mile away, alone. They begin around 9:30 in the morning.

If we don't answer, the phone rings again three minutes later, but not for as long. Perhaps, Henriette thinks, she dialed the wrong number the first time and if she dials again, she will find us home. Our strategy for responding to her is not all that clear. If we answer each call, that will, it seem, only enable Henriette and she will call again in 30 minutes or less, having nothing again to say, but wanting to hear a voice on the other end. Does she need anything? No. Does she have any updates for us? No. Does she want us to pick something up at the store? No. She just wants to hear a familiar voice -- a break from a day of game shows on her flat screen TV.

If we don't answer, which is sometimes our plan, Henriette ends up feeling ignored, which is never a good thing, but sometimes we are simply not at home. Joelle and Evelyne tell Henriette, firmly, there is no need for her to call so often. They tell her that they love her and will stop by later in the afternoon, but this rarely does any good. Henriette likes to dial the phone. It is one of the things she still knows how to do, having stopped crocheting and crossword puzzles three years ago.

I think about the ninth call or the 15th of the day when Evelyne and I just look at each other, not quite sure what to do. Sometimes we take a step or two towards the phone, then stop, letting it ring. Sometimes we don't even get up from the couch. Sometimes we pick up the phone immediately, even though we agreed earlier in the morning that we would not do that.

MitchDitkoff.com
Unspoken Word
My book of stories
TimelessToday

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 04:27 AM | Comments (0)

MY MOTHER-IN-LAW'S BASEMENT

IMG_1883.JPG

Henriette Pouget, my 90-year old French mother-in-law, who lives alone in a house with nothing out of place, is no longer able to navigate stairs on her own.

Though she's been to Germany, Luxembourg, Martinique, and America, her basement is now out of bounds. Neither of her two daughters will allow it. They are very firm about that. The key to the door is still in the lock, but she has not turned it in years. Touched it? Maybe. But turned it? No. So when it was time to retrieve the shovel for today's planting of purple flowers on her front lawn, it was my turn. Slowly, I opened the door and began my descent.

The first room I entered was at least 10 degrees cooler than the ones upstairs, a nice surprise on this brutally hot day here in the north of France. "Climate change" the neighbors like to say. "Mon dieu!"

It is small, this room, but not too small, kind of like a 3-table jazz club only the locals know about. In the corner is a bar, built on weekends and nights, by Jean, Henriette's long-deceased husband -- a project, I am told, that was very important to him -- his chance to make something special away from the noise of the factory floor where he worked the day shift, building Citroens, for 32 years. Many half-filled bottles line the shelves above the bar: rum, Nolly Ambre, Gran Marnier, a St. Raphael rouge, some Scotch, Pernod. I can see Jean pouring a round of drinks for his favorite neighbors on a Saturday night, much laughter filling the room, Henriette with a tray of something in her hands.

On the wall, across the way, are framed pictures of classic cars: a red 1936 Bugatti, a white 1928 Excalibur, a blue 1927 Rolls Royce and three others. In the far corner, F. Scott Fitzgerald and a few of his writer friends are knocking back cocktails and practicing their French. They like Jean. He's a good man. And though he didn't have all that much to say to his wife and two daughters, his words, when he spoke, stood guard for years, like the tiny tin soldiers no one ever gave him as a child.

Behind a door, to the right, is a guest room -- or used to be -- the place where Henriette's sisters, once a year or so, would stay. On the wall? Two framed photos. One is Evelyne, my wife, at six months old, with a blond mohawk before it became all the rage. The other, directly over the bed, is a black and white of Evelyne and her brother, Gille, Henriette's first born before he died, at nine, of some kind of rare blood disease the doctors couldn't quite explain. He is five in the picture. Evelyne is three. She is kissing him on the cheek, her eyes closed. He is smiling.

My poetry blog

MitchDitkoff.com
My book of stories
TimelessToday

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 02:59 AM | Comments (0)

July 08, 2017
Waving Goodbye to Henriette

IMG_8300.jpg

Evelyne and I have been visiting her mother, Henriette, twice a day for the past week or so. Our visits are short and sweet. We sit in her living room and, after she turns off the French game shows on TV, we talk. Well, actually, Evelyne talks. My grasp of French, not unlike my grasp of trigonometry, is only "un petit peu". So Evelyne translates for me, when it's my turn, which is actually kind of cool, because it makes our conversations with Henriette a bit longer.

We ask her how she's doing. We ask her if she needs anything. We show her the photos we took of her, on the couch, yesterday. And we banter, the French way. "Badinage" it's called and Henriette is very good at it -- the playful way French people make fun of each other -- yet another way of staying young, I suppose.

I write "Je Taime" on a few pieces of scrap paper and leave them in various places around the house, so later that day Henriette will be reminded of how much she is loved. She asks me if I want some water, her need to serve, even at 90, still so very strong. She gets up slowly from the couch, steadies herself for a brief moment, and walks to the kitchen -- or should I say "waddles" -- a new kind of side-to-side movement that keeps her from falling. The water she brings me is perfectly chilled and served in a beautiful glass.

The first few days Evelyne and I said goodbye to her after one of our visits we simply drove off in the direction our car was facing -- which was away from Henriette's house. She did not like this at all. Her preference, she explained, was for us to turn the car around and drive past her house so she could stand on her balcony and wave -- and we could wave back. This is what we do now. Waving goodbye to Henriette, as she stands behind her purple and white petunias, happens twice a day here in the little town of Courcelles-Chaussy.

My poetry blog
MitchDitkoff.com

My book of stories

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 05:42 PM | Comments (0)

July 06, 2017
What Have You Accomplished?

100_0674.jpg

As I gear up to enter the next decade of my life, I find myself at a curious crossroads -- the intersection of WHO and WHAT, one of those strange intersections far out of town where the sagebrush rolls and the GPS signal is just out of range. Sitting in the front seat of my leased 2015 Honda, wondering how I gained the last five pounds, I ask myself a question highly unlikely to make me the life of the party: "Have I done anything of significance these past 69 years?

It's an age-old dilemma, methinks, a classic rite-of-passage -- the time when a man takes stock of himself and realizes his so called "portfolio" of accomplishments doesn't necessarily measure up to what he imagined it would one day be. And though I have always felt a breathtaking magnificence inside me, OUTWARDLY much of what I have expressed, in this life, seems to have been lost in translation -- not unlike a child's game of "telephone" where you whisper something to the person next to you and they, in turn, whisper it to the person next to them and so on and so forth around the circle until the last person blurts what they've heard -- a jumble of words not even remotely close to what it was the started the whole game.

A few months shy of 70, focused more, today, on the butterflies in my tummy than the ones that herald spring, I find myself looking in two directions at once. One is forward, trying to make out what I see with the time I have left. The other is backwards, trying to make sense of the forces that have brought me to this precise moment in time.

What I see, behind me, is my father coming home from a long day's work. He's exhausted, unsettled, my mother greeting him with a martini and the officiousness of a 50's housewife, me tentatively approaching, receiving a quick hug and the all-too-familiar question my father routinely greeted me with: "What have you ACCOMPLISHED today?" -- a kind of Zen Cohen that always left me feeling I hadn't done enough. Yes, I played roofball and punchball and kickball and stickball. And yes, I played with my dog and read the backs of my baseball cards. But did I accomplish anything? Did I do anything that really mattered?

The older I got, the more my father's accomplishment mantra embedded its way into my psyche, a kind of microscopic parasite a person might pick up on a quick trip to a third world country. And though I couldn't see it, I could FEEL it -- radiating outwards, driving me to DO, DO, DO -- moving me to create something I considered "significant" -- something meaningful enough I could sign my name to once and for all.

My friends, I think it is time for me (and maybe, you) to answer the question my father used to ask. Ready? IT'S THE WRONG QUESTION. While the intention may be harmless, the act of being ruled by it is not. "The foolish man is always doing," said Lao Tzu, "yet much remains to be done. The wise man does nothing, yet nothing remains undone."

Kapish? In the end, there is nothing to do! Nothing to prove! Zero. Nada. Zilch. Unless we can live fully in this present moment where everything is already perfect, our life will never be more than a programmed/neurotic/obsessive attempt to achieve -- a carrot dangled in front of us by the collective hallucination that we have never really done enough.

Guess what? We have.

Face it. There is absolutely nothing we can do that will ever be enough compared to the outcome we IMAGINE it should be. Maybe that's why Van Gogh cut off his ear. Maybe that's why countless creative souls drink too much and think too much. You see, the obsession with proving our worth is a losing game. First of all, the self does not need to be proven. It is ALREADY complete just the way it is. And second of all, there is no second of all.

THIS is the moment. THIS. NOW. HERE. Just the way it is.

In the end, WHAT we do is way less important than HOW we do it. When that recognition dawns, joy replaces struggle, gratitude replaces complaint, and everything comes to us in its own, sweet time...

MitchDitkoff.com

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 05:31 AM | Comments (0)

July 02, 2017
The Sign

IMG_goodbell.jpg

The small sign under my mother-in-law's front door bell in France says "J. Pouget." "J" is the first initial of her long-gone husband's first name, "Jean" -- a kind man who died 34 years ago after a lifetime of working in a Citroen factory and dreaming of the time he would one day retire. The two of them met, as young children, during the war, in a Catholic orphanage, where Henriette lived -- or tried to live -- for 12 long years. Jean, I learned, today, would travel, once a month, by train, from his orphanage more than two hours away, to visit his sisters -- girls who had become Henriette's best friends.

Her mother died in childbirth -- not Henriette's, but her sister's. Suddenly widowed and now completely overwhelmed, her father, a conductor for the local railroad, decided to take his six daughters to the local orphanage and leave them there -- a not uncommon act, in Europe, during the second World War. Henriette was six at the time.

Once a day, her father would eat lunch there, the orphanage being conveniently located on his train route. That's when Henriette and her five sisters would press their noses up against the glass and watch their father eat. When he was done, often late for work, he would meet them in the lobby, allowed only five minutes for a hug, dig deep into his black satchel and secretly give a handful of candies to the eldest for her to distribute to the little ones at the end of a long tiled hallway where the nuns couldn't see. There, the girls would rip the wrappers off and eat their candy quickly, dreaming of the time their father would next return.

A book of my stories
My website

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 07:48 AM | Comments (1)

ABOUT THE BLOG

Storytelling at Work is a blog about the power of personal storytelling – why it matters and what you can do to more effectively communicate your stories – on or off the job. Inspired by the book of the same name, the blog features "moment of truth" stories by the author, Mitch Ditkoff, plus inspired rants, quotes, and guest submissions by readers.

Order the book:

MitchDitkoff.com
Click here for the simplest, most direct way, to learn more about Idea Champions' semi-fearless leader, Mitch Ditkoff. Info on his keynotes, workshops, conferences, and more.
Storytelling at Work
Storytelling at Work is Mitch Ditkoff's newly published book about the power of personal storytelling in business – why it matters and what you and your organization can do to leverage the impact of storytelling in the workplace.
Top 5 Speaker
Mitch Ditkoff, the Co-Founder and President of Idea Champions, has recently been voted a top 5 speaker in the field of innovation and creativity by Speakers Platform, a leading speaker's bureau.
Authorized Reseller Logo – GoLeanSixSigma.com
Workshops & Trainings
Highly engaging learning experiences that increase each participant's ability to become a creative force for positive change
Brainstorm Facilitation
High impact certification training that teaches committed change agents how to lead groundbreaking ideation sessions
Cultivating Innovation
Your "best and brightest" are the future leaders of your company, but unless they know how to foster a culture of innovation, their impact will be limited. A one-day workshop with us is all they need to begin this journey.
Our Blog Cabin
Our Heart of Innovation blog is a daily destination for movers and shakers everywhere — gleefully produced by our President, Mitch Ditkoff, voted "best innovation blogger in the world" two years running.
Team Innovation
Innovation is a team sport. Brilliant ideas go nowhere unless your people are aligned, collaborative, and team-oriented. That doesn't happen automatically, however. It takes intention, clarity, selflessness, and a new way of operating.
Webinars Powered by
Idea Champions University
Webinars for online training If you enjoy our blog, you will love our newly launched webinars! Our training is now accessible online to the whole world.
Awake at the Wheel, Book about big ideas If you're looking for a powerful way to jump start innovation and get your creative juices flowing, Awake at the Wheel is for you. Written by Mitch Ditkoff, Co-Founder and President of Idea Champions.
Face the Music Blues Band The world's first interactive business blues band. A great way to help your workforce go beyond complaint.

"In tune with corporate America." — CNN
© IDEA CHAMPIONS