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how to find things worth making
March 18, 2016, 3:49 pm
Filed under: Digital Strategy, Innovation, Service Design | Tags:


Lovely thinking about the role of research, the scaffolding of teams with structure and principles, the necessity of focussing on adding value and the whole shebang being an iterative process

Link here: https://www.slideshare.net/mobile/adamconnor/design-thinking-finding-problems-worth-solving-in-health
Lovely find @markpollard



Fireside stories
March 7, 2016, 5:29 pm
Filed under: Digital Strategy, Experience, Innovation, Service Design

  
Found this useful frame work on the Katie Dreke’s fab tumblr obsessivecompulsive 

  1. Start with conflict. Tolstoy once remarked, “All great literature is one of two stories; a man goes on a journey or a stranger comes to town”—and he knows a thing or two about narrative. Without a change in the status quo, there is no story, so make sure people understand the current situation and why it’s untenable.
  2. Explain your progress thus far. Your team may have been working on this problem for some time, but it will be new to your audience. Show the results from your customer research and competitive analysis; using quotes or images from real people for greater impact.
  3. Propose your grand ambition. Despite the challenges, reassure the audience that there’s reason to hope—and, in fact, a great opportunity for those willing to seize it. Lay out your team’s vision for the future, but then…
  4. Identify the barriers. Create drama by introducing new sources of conflict and explaining what’s stopping the organization from achieving its goals.
  5. Explain how to overcome those barriers. Make the audience the protagonists by explaining why their help is needed. If they feel like they are part of the solution, they will become powerful brand ambassadors for the new changes.
  6. Build excitement as you expose the creative solutions. Unveil your ideas and clearly illustrate how they will get you closer to the big vision.
  7. End smoothly with timing, costs, and next steps. Our last presentation tip now that the story is ending, is to take action. Translate the vision into tactical goals and clear responsibilities so that people can bring it to life.

Super. I’m a gonna use it now….

I was lucky enough to be in the audience at the Google Firestarters gig that Neil Perkin puts on all over the world. Great line up: Faris Yakob (founder Genius Steals), Angela Morris (Exec Planning Director, JWT Australia), Graeme Wood (Head of Strategy, M2M Australia) and a provocation about the intersection of data and creativity.

There was so much great stuff and interestingness. Effective too-it’s really got me thinking about where I think the sweet spots lie in the use of the digital discipline in the role of growing brands and business. 

1. Start with conflict. 

  • Is  digital storytelling content or experience?
  • Where paid media is experiencing 84% avoidance and banners have a 0.06% CTR and 1 in 5 ad block it’s easy to say that the problem lies in the audience- that fantasitc ‘attention span of a goldfish’ 8 second span thing
  • But we’re in a golden age of TV where long form content is king and people will watch an entire 13 hour series in one sitting
  • Gamer’s sessions average over an hour
  • Is it that audiences have less ability to focus, or that they’ve increased their ability to filter?
  • Digital is a more effective cultural medium than an advertising context
  • Our aim should be to get people off the couch
  • The opportunity is to think broader than media property, bigger than passive content consumption and to start to play in culture.

2. Explain progress thus far. 

  • Cultural institutions seem to be leading the way in utilising digital to mean more and grow
  • Museums and art galleries are exploring their reasons to be, to inspire and educate, and be Cathedrals of the Imagination 
  • Have a look at this great stuff: the work of the Culturelabel team, Seb Chan’s extraordinary Pen project for the Smithsonian,  MONA, what’s going on at music festivals….
  • Experiences are being designed to create new audiences, increase desire and attendance, increase dwell times, link the online data, content and curation with the physical world, build communities, and prompt repeat visitation 
  • This is happening as a result of working within the culture of audiences. Understanding their behaviour and seeking to provide experiences that add (not are ads)

3. Propose your grand ambition. 

  • Digital storytelling is creating a narrative in culture, driven by a protagonist on their own hero’s journey.

4. Identify the barriers. 

  • Paid Media magic beans=  easier to buy than build
  • I’ve got a hammer= the answer to everthing is paid media and all problems are solved with attention/engagement/ awareness
  • Over kill and undercooked= using creativity to only make advertising is kind of like using Nuclear Power to heat water to make electricity

5. Explain how to over come the barriers

  • Grown up business cases for innovation
  • Define ambitious outcomes beyond traditional media metrics 
  • Involve decision makers beyond marketing

6. Build excitement as you expose the creative solutions.

  • Working at the C level of an organisation and introducing all kinds of people to new ideas needs a skill set to manage complex stakeholder environments and the ability to both change people’s minds and help them build the skills to champion new ideas. Education is how you sell innovation

7. End smoothly with timing, costs, and next steps. 

  • Start now! Carve out a budget – what can 5% achieve? How about 25%? Write a plan.


      1. the future of digital business
        February 18, 2015, 11:44 am
        Filed under: Digital Strategy

        A brilliant presentation from Scott Galloway on Amazon/Apple/Facebook & Google (The Four Horsemen) and who will win and who will lose in the digital business economy. It’s a rapid fire, 90 slide, 15 minute presentation that you MUST watch.

        You will laugh and learn:

        • Sales training for Facebook or Google…”I have more relationships than god and I’m on a mobile phone”
        • Google Glass is not a wearable it’s is a prophylactic
        • Brands are built at purchase…
        • Why Apple will become the first trillion dollar brand
        • Self-expressive benefit: (about his watch) this is not a timepiece, I have not wound it in five years, it’s vain my attempt to express Italian masculinity and signal that if you mate with me I am more likely to take care of your offspring than someone wearing a Swatch watch…


        Creativity and the meaning of ‘now’
        July 3, 2014, 9:37 pm
        Filed under: Digital Strategy, Experience, Zeitgeist

        Have been part of the Sydney Social Media week advisory board ( top geezers) on crafting how we can explore our theme of The Future of Now: Always On Always Connected.

        For me creativity, and  the future are inextricably linked.  We just won’t make it unless we fully harness the limitless resource of our creative potential.

        “As deep knowledge becomes a common asset, creativity will be the differentiating factor. Creativity is not a ‘nice-to-have’ attribute anymore, it’s a prerequisite for performance, development and growth—supporting us in our ability to innovate and drive change faster and better.” –Ben de Vries, Head of Brand Management, Ericsson

        But we also won’t make unless we share, we collaborate and we inspire each other with our different perspectives. I believe that social technology and behaviors may well be one of the engines that will provide the forward momentum  to allow creativity to really be embraced.

        The team I’m part of  have been doing some global research on this (on Slideshare here) talking  more than 7,000 people in 11 markets and we found that creative thought was  defined as: solutions to problems that are unexpected in any field of work, not just within traditionally creative fields such as writing, design or the performing arts.

        Some of the key outtakes of the research (Collaboration, Play, Freedom to fail, Ego support, Space to think, and Idea Collection)  are helping me build my approach to the panel sessions I’m involved in, and these are the notions I’m looking at:

        • How can we achieve more through collaboration and co-creation?
        • How can we facilitate meaningful conversations, practices for devoting time to creative thinking and mindful contemplation?
        • How can we balance and preserve humanness — meaning the ability to listen, empathize, engage, focus and be present in the moment — despite the constant disruption that technology enables?

        Would love to know if you find the research useful. Am looking forward to my own Eureka moment. All anecdotes welcome!



        how do you value culture?
        January 9, 2014, 6:42 pm
        Filed under: Digital Strategy, Experience, Get Friendly, Great Stuff, passion, Zeitgeist

        art-culture_metricv5

        It’s Festival time in Sydney. While I’m super excited about taking my inner child by the hand and having a bit of a frolic on Sacrilege, the true sized inflatable bouncy castle Stonehenge in Hyde Park’s Festival Village, I was interested to read this in The Australian

        FESTIVAL organizers measure success in terms of ticket sales and economic impact, but a new cultural metric may be tweets and pictures on social media. Last year, an enormous yellow duck was a hit of the Sydney Festival, where 1.7 million people could not have missed seeing it at Darling Harbour. Some 14,000 images were posted on Instagram using festival hashtags.

        Mmmm. ‘Cultural Metric’. Good notion. Loads of tension in it:

        • What is culture?
        • How might culture be measured?
        • How do we value it?

        The NSW Government is investing more than $5 million to ensure the success of the 2014 Festival,

        “Last year the Sydney Festival attracted more than 500,000 people with more than 120,000 tickets sold to paid events, including more than 33,000 people who attended events in Western Sydney. In 2012, it injected almost $57 million into our economy

        From that perspective an arts investment looks like a pretty good return to the taxpayers hereabouts. I wonder how they’d value those tweets.

        Early last year MoMA curator of Architecture and Design Paola Antonelli led a discussion about Culture and Metrics, (which I’ve entirely re cut below):

        • why bother?
          • the reality is that cultures come and go over time. If we don’t know what’s valuable about a particular culture, we run the risk of losing it forever.
          • not all art is concerned with culture, and not all culture is arts-based
          • it’s the best way to create a future that human beings want to inhabit.
          • MoMA has been one of the most important cathedrals of the imagination in my life since childhood, and envisioning it as a driver of R&D across society at large is extremely exciting.
        • measurement
          • Kate Levin, the Commissioner of The Department of Cultural Affairs for New York City: measuring culture, is mostly about objectives and outcomes. She used The Gates as an example of a valuable, measurable project funded by the Department for Cultural Affairs. Four million visitors to this 16-day installation created $254 million in revenue for NYC.
          • Measuring culture will require us to think of new ways to measure and share the story of a project’s insights and impact.
        • culture and value
          • “For me, The Gates was never about whether the saffron curtains and plastic frames were art. Some people argued that it was a hideous monstrosity while others loved it. Instead, I just felt lucky to be part of the flow of conversation and people as we passed together through The Gates on a beautiful blue and gold day. I felt lucky to be a New Yorker. And that’s the point of culture. It gives us a sense of place while at the same time evoking a deeply personal experience of the universal. “

        As Rita observed, and who was at the MoMA talk, it brings to life one of Andy Warhol’s statements:

        • “Being good in business is the most fascinating kind of art.”

        Creating a deeply personal experience of an enterprise, creating a real and vibrant culture, feels like a bit of an art, and has the same kind of challenge:

        But, how do you measure that?

        Answer: With great difficulty.

        Then again…. people are the only metric that really counts.

        It’s hard. Really hard. Most companies can’t do it. The ones that can, make a fortune. Life is unfair.



        how long is the truth?
        January 7, 2014, 12:40 pm
        Filed under: Digital Strategy, The Rules, triangulation, Zeitgeist

        triangulating favourite things

        Had an interesting question about the triangulation exercise– how long should it be?

        In a true form I’d have to say: How long is the truth?

        I’ve put the challenge forward with ‘manifest the outcome how you like…’

        I do know that the blank page is the hardest to start with and the that structure is a fine tool to get the ball rolling….

        So to help actually answer the question I can put forward some options on process and practice:

        • I’m a big fan of visual thinking as a tool to explore intersection- to mine where commonality lies and to use it to find a singular point of truth
          • the above was a bit of a joke for a mate (if you’re not a Top Gun fan- it means that the absolute truth between his three favourite things is that they FVROOM/ Doppler effect/or can disappear out of sight in a second)
            • this was a while ago- today I’d say that the intersection could be brought to life by Archer
            • this might mean that you could structure a deck like this:
              • Demonstrate key learnings/ Identify themes: one chart each on the major themes of each of the articles
              • Explore intersections: commonalities between each article
              • The absolute truth- your key out take/ observation/ pov
        •  When I started doing these exercises myself as blog posts I tried to keep them around 300 words

        I’d love to see a podcast, an interpretive dance, a cartoon if that can take us on a journey of your thinking.

        I’m as interested in what you see along the way as the destination of your journey.

        Anyhoo- good luck, and thanks for asking.



        getting into the swing of things
        November 26, 2013, 9:02 pm
        Filed under: Digital Strategy, Experience

        Trying out the lovely Haiku deck….

        These are my notes from a breakfast meeting with the lovely Megan Brownlow from PwC.

        She spoke about their interesting report: PwC’s NextGen: A global generational study, Millennial Workers Want Greater Flexibility, Work/Life Balance, Global Opportunities

        This comprehensive and global generational study conducted by PwC, the University of Southern California and the London Business School looks into the aspirations, work styles and values of “Millennial”/”Generation Y” employees (those born between 1980 and 1995).

        The study, which included more than 40,000 responses from Millennials and non-Millennials alike, captures the various forces at play that are influencing the experience of Millennials. These include: workplace culture, communication and work styles, compensation and career structure, career development and opportunities and work/life balance.

        I followed with these notes on how the existing behaviors and first language of millennial employees can be harnessed to meet both their needs and that of their employers.




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