Idea Champions corporate cretivity
Creating the Innovation Mindset
The Power of Personal Storytelling
to Spark Business Breakthroughs

For the moment, let's assume your organization values innovation and wants to get everyone into the act. That's the good news. The not-so-good news is that the effort to accomplish this noble goal is a challenging one. When you think about how difficult it is for just one person to lose five pounds or quit smoking, imagine how hard it is to get hundreds – or even thousands – of people to go beyond their collective limiting assumptions and enter into an open mindset where anything is possible.

The question, of course, isn't whether you should take on this challenge — the success of your business depends on it. The question is: How you will take on the challenge and, even more importantly, how will you begin?

Our suggestion? Begin at the beginning. And the beginning is mainly about story — the old, innovation-averse stories that the people in your company keep telling AND the new, future-building stories your people haven't yet imagined or told – the kind of stories that will have a massively positive impact on your company's culture, climate, and creativity.

Since 1987, Idea Champions has worked with hundreds of savvy organizations committed to fostering a culture of innovation. Along the way, we've tried many things to move our clients beyond their old mental models and attachment to the status quo. Most of what we've done has worked quite well, but one thing has worked best — and that is storytelling.

Storytelling, we've discovered, is the simplest way to move people into an innovation mindset and change an organization's culture. When you change the story, you change the mind, and when you change the mind, you change the future. Which is precisely what our workshop is all about.

Our premise is a simple one. If you want to establish an engaged, innovation-leaning workforce, give people something to be engaged and innovation-leaning about. And what that something is has less to do with what outside experts want to teach than what your workforce already knows — their own, innate, untapped business-growth brilliance that is hiding in the last place they usually look — their own stories.

Creating the Innovation Mindset gets those stories on the table in a highly engaging way — stories that become fuel for a fire that sparks insight, collaboration, wisdom, and the peer-to-peer sharing of "tacit knowledge" — the hard-to-communicate essence of what really matters on the job.

How Does The Workshop Work?

  1. Pre-Session Needs Assessment: Preparing the Ground for Breakthrough
    1. Via an online poll and phone interviews with a cross-section of participants, we identity and rank your company's innovation-averse stories — the popular narratives in the workplace that have been subverting bold, new possibilities.
    2. We identify three "innovation bright spots" in your organization (i.e. examples of innovation success) and coach three innovation advocates to present those stories at the workshop.
    3. We custom design the workshop, based on what we learn from #1 and #2.
  2. Workshop Agenda: The Journey from the Old Story to the New Story
    1. CURRENT REALITY: Exploring the impact of your company's old stories
    2. CONTEXT SETTING: How storytelling sparks change & the innovation mindset
    3. EXERCISE: Participants conceive and write innovation stories from the future
    4. GROUP PROCESS: Story sharing/story building to develop new narratives
    5. STORY ENGINEERING: Extracting key themes, insights, and ideas
    6. BRAINSTORMING: Turning story themes into seeds of business growth ideas
    7. CREATING THE FUTURE: Full group declarations of selected, new stories
    8. ACTION PLANNING: How to leverage personal storytelling, post-workshop
    9. TAKEAWAYS: Storytelling at Work (book), Free the Genie decks, FTG app
  3. Post-Workshop Options: Making Stories Stick
    1. WISDOM CIRCLE: We facilitate a 2-hour session for 8-10 early adapters
    2. WISDOM CIRCLE TRAINING: We teach your change agents how to facilitate
    3. ONLINE FOLLOW-UP: A page of innovation-sparking links on our website
    4. SUBSCRIPTION to our Storytelling at Work blog
    5. COACHING and CONSULTING: To help you foster storytelling on the job
  4. The Individual and Organizational Impact of the Workshop:
    1. Increased employee engagement, passion, and inspiration
    2. Renewed sense of the meaning and purpose of work
    3. A change in mindset from "no can do" to "anything is possible"
    4. Recognition of the value of peer-to-peer learning
    5. Meaningful sharing of "tacit knowledge" (the best of best practices)
    6. Generation of fresh, new ideas and insights to grow the business
    7. Personal commitment to foster a company-wide culture of innovation

    More about the power of storytelling in the workplace

    Contact Us to Learn More

Top News & Offerings
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 for the Revolution
Storytelling for the Revolution is Mitch Ditkoff's newly published book about the power of personal storytelling to elevate the conversation on planet Earth. Provocative. Evocative. And fun. YOU have stories to tell. This book will help you tell them.
Storytelling at Work
"The world is not made of atoms," wrote the poet, Muriel Rukeyser. "It's made of stories." Learn how to discover, honor, and unpack the stories of yours that show up "on the job" in Mitch Ditkoff's award-winning 2015 book, Storytelling at Work.
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.
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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.
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.

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