October 24, 2014
The Incremental Improvement Trap

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In today's nano-second, downsized, caffeine-buzzed business world, corporations are increasingly demanding that "their people" redouble their efforts to find new and better ways of getting the job done.

If this were the 1950's, an efficiency expert might be called in, a bespectacled, uncharismatic gentleman with a fascination for predictability, order, and control. His motto? "A place for everything and everything in its place."

It wasn't a great leap of faith for upwardly mobile managers to buy into this trendy "consulting service" since it seemed like such a safe way to yield increased productivity and reduced costs.

And yes, sometimes it did...

Continue reading "The Incremental Improvement Trap"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 11:17 PM | Comments (0)

October 23, 2014
Why Does Your Company Brainstorm?

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We asked 20 of our clients WHY their companies conduct brainstorming sessions. Here's what they told us, on a scale of 1-5.

4.27 Get different points of view

4.11 Spark creative thinking

4.11 Originate fresh approaches

4.05 Create new possibilities

4.05 Inspire original thinking

4.00 Challenge the status quo

4.00 Tap collective genius

3.94 Unlock fresh insights

3.94 Stir the creative juices

3.94 Generate bold, new ideas

3.83 Jump start innovation

3.77 Solve tough challenges

3.77 Free up creative energy

3.77 Think out of the box

3.72 Think up new solutions quickly

3.66 Accelerate solution finding

3.50 Awaken untapped brilliance

3.38 Quicken the ideation process

3.00 Delight your clients

We teach people how to lead breakthrough brainstorming sessions.

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 01:51 PM | Comments (0)

October 22, 2014
The Perception of Ideas as Problems

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Here's something I've been noticing lately:

Managers tend to respond to the introduction of a new idea by one of their direct reports not as an imminent solution to be nurtured, but as a new problem to deal with. Ideas, one would think, would be welcomed by managers, especially managers who are talking the talk about innovation. But all too often managers, time-crunched and overloaded as they are, perceive the introduction of a new idea as simply "more work" for them to do, the early warning sign of more emails to read, more meetings to attend, more requests for funding, and more conflicting opinions. Perhaps this is why so many managers respond to the articulation of a new idea with kneejerk naysaying instead of heartfelt open-mindedness. And you wonder why innovation in your organization is so sluggish...

One way to turn this around
And another way
Our new brainstorming website

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 02:05 AM | Comments (0)

October 21, 2014
What Does This Picture Mean to You?

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Idea Champions

Brainstorm Champions

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 04:52 PM | Comments (0)

October 17, 2014
The Syndrome Syndrome

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Here's a fun test for you: If you can read the rest of this paragraph without logging onto Facebook, tweeting, or thinking about crop circles, there's a good chance you do not have ADD, ADHD, or any other recently-identified medical condition.

That's the good news.

The not-so-good news? The overwhelming number of disorders, dysfunctions, and syndromes popping up daily make it almost impossible to understand exactly what condition you actually have.

As a concerned citizen, humanitarian, and Johnny Depp look-a-like, I've decided to go beyond my SAHS (Social Activist Hesitation Syndrome) and actually do something about it.

Continue reading "The Syndrome Syndrome"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 08:24 PM | Comments (0)

October 15, 2014
A Brainstorm Training that Works

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What follows is some juicy feedback we just received from Blue States Digital, a new client of ours who participated in our brainstorm facilitation training:

"The three-day Conducting Genius training was engaging, fun and informative. I feel empowered as a facilitator and confident in my skills and ability. Mitch and Val were fantastic teachers -- I was sad when it was over!"

"We did the three-day version of Conducting Genius, and I wish it could've been even longer! By far the most fun, useful, productive, and engaging training I've ever attended."

"It felt like summer camp for creative nerds."

"After the session, I felt energized and empowered -- ready to lead a brainstorm, boss a meeting, and infuse my work with more creativity and thought. Val and Mitch are magicians -- and they passed some of that magic on to us."

The website
What other clients say
About the training
Tell us about your need

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 01:30 AM | Comments (0)

October 14, 2014
Join Us in NYC on November 19th

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www.BrainstormChampions.com

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 11:59 PM | Comments (0)

50 Awesome Quotes on Vision

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1. "If you can dream it, you can do it." - Walt Disney

2. "Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, and magic and power in it. Begin it now." - Goethe

3. "The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it." - Michelangelo

4. "It's not enough to be busy, so are the ants. The question is, what are we busy about?" - Henry David Thoreau

5. "You don't lead by pointing and telling people some place to go. You lead by going to that place and making a case." - Ken Kesey

Continue reading "50 Awesome Quotes on Vision"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 02:34 PM | Comments (5)

October 09, 2014
Playing With Parkinson's

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Q. What do Muhammed Ali, Billy Graham, Roger Bannister, Steve Allen, Linda Ronstadt, Michael J. Fox, and Robin Williams all have in common?

A. Each of them have inspired and delighted millions of people. And each of them have had to deal with Parkinson's disease, a degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that affects approximately 7-10 million people worldwide.

With the recent passing of Robin Williams, the world has gotten yet another opportunity to learn about the ravages of this little-understood disease, named after James Parkinson, an English physician who published the first detailed description of it back in 1817.

Continue reading "Playing With Parkinson's"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 06:01 AM | Comments (0)

October 07, 2014
THE SEED OF INNOVATION MOMENT: A 3-Minute Video Tutorial

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If you are trying to spark a renaissance of innovation in your company by launching some kind of "innovation initiative", consider the fact that the seed of innovation is already available in every conversation that people are having. This 3-minute video tutorial dives in deeper.

The Seed of Innovation keynote
Create change agents
A more structured way to do this

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 03:51 PM | Comments (0)

October 04, 2014
HOW TO GET PEOPLE OUT OF THE SO-CALLED BOX: A 5-Minute Tutorial

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Ever heard the expression "get out of the box?" Of course you have. Ever wonder what the six sides of that so-called box actually are? If not, here's your 5-minute tutorial of the day. Once you're clear about what the sides of the box are, you will be significantly more able to help people (and yourself) get out of it.

One way to get out of the box
Another way
My book on the subject
Boxes

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 11:24 AM | Comments (0)

October 03, 2014
HOW TO MAXIMIZE IDEA POWER FOR FREE: A 3-Minute Video Tutorial

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Need powerful, new ideas to grow your business, solve a problem, or find a better way? Don't want to go to yet another meeting to figure things out? Start paying attention to the ideas you are conceiving away from the workplace. And encourage others to do so, as well. Here's WHY and HOW.

Idea Champions
First, identify the problem
Innovation sparking keynotes
Free online creative thinking tool

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 10:34 AM | Comments (0)

October 02, 2014
HOW TO SPARK INNOVATION IN OTHERS: A 5-Minute Video Tutorial

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Here's a little known secret: Organizations don't innovate. People innovate. Inspired, creative, committed, collaborative, self-motivated people. What can YOU do to help people innovate? A lot. This 5-minute video tutorial tells you how.

Ingenious Leadership
Applied Innovation
Brainstorm facilitation training
What our clients say

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 12:37 PM | Comments (0)

October 01, 2014
HOW TO FACILITATE BRAINSTORMING SESSIONS: A 5 Minute Video Tutorial

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Here's a 5-minute video tutorial on the eight dimensions of a brainstorming session. Most facilitators think brainstorm sessions are all about ideation. They're not. There are seven other variables at play that effect the outcome of your ideational efforts.

In defense of brainstorming
Brainstorm facilitation training

Why nothing happens after a brainstorming session
You CAN tell a book by its cover

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 03:53 PM | Comments (0)

September 27, 2014
14 Ways to Get Breakthrough Ideas

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There's a lot of talk these days about the importance of innovation. All CEOs worth their low salt lunch want it. And they want it, of course, now.

Continue reading "14 Ways to Get Breakthrough Ideas"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 04:39 AM | Comments (0)

September 26, 2014
Derek Jeter Wins the Game!

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 03:02 AM | Comments (0)

September 25, 2014
When Dogs Spark Big Ideas

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During the past 25 years I have facilitated more than 1,000 brainstorming sessions for a wide variety of heavy hitting organizations -- everyone from MTV to GE to government think thanks. I've worked with left-brained people, right-brained people, and reptilian-brained people.

As you might imagine, I've developed quite a few techniques to get people out of their heads and into a more robust realm of possibility. But the biggest breakthroughs I've seen have had less to do with my methods than they did with spontaneous occurrences.

Like the time a Porcelain Hotel Dog became the catalyst for a game changing product idea.

Continue reading "When Dogs Spark Big Ideas"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 10:45 PM | Comments (0)

September 24, 2014
20 Reasons Why People Get Their Best Ideas in the Shower

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During the past 25 years, I've asked more than 10,000 people where and when they get their best ideas. I get all kinds of answers, but the one that has always fascinated me is "the shower" -- maybe because I also get so many of my good ideas there. And so, at the risk of overstating my case, I hereby offer you 20 reasons WHY the shower is so conducive to idea generation.

1. Showering signals "a new day" or "new beginning."

2. You're usually alone, with time to reflect.

3. Interruptions are rare.

4. The rush of water creates a kind of "white noise" that makes concentration easier.

Continue reading "20 Reasons Why People Get Their Best Ideas in the Shower"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 11:48 AM | Comments (4)

September 19, 2014
26 Inspired Quotes on the Innovation Most Needed on Planet Earth -- PEACE!

You've heard of product innovation, process innovation, business model innovation, and disruptive innovation. Now it's time for PEACE INNOVATION -- and that's what's happening on September 21st all around the world as millions of people in cities, towns, and hamlets gather together to celebrate the International Day of Peace.

Want to know more? See more? Feel more? Tune into PeaceCast, a 48-hour livestream broadcast to celebrate the International Day of Peace. Starts at 8:00 am (EDT) on 9/20 and ends at 6:00 am (EDT) on 9/22.

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 11:36 PM | Comments (0)

September 18, 2014
Michelangelo on Genius

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Idea Champions

Ingenious Leadership

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 03:00 PM | Comments (0)

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Idea Champions is a consulting and training company dedicated to awakening and nurturing the spirit of innovation. We help individuals, teams and entire organizations tap into their innate ability to create, develop and implement ideas that make a difference.

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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.
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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.
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A totally unique brainstorming salon. Great food. Great food for thought. Great people. Collaborate, have fun, get out of the box.

"Inno-waiters With Whine Lists" – The Breakthrough Cafe featured in January 2006 issue of
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