Steven Johnson once said that ‘the trick to having good ideas is not to sit around in glorious isolation and try to think big thoughts. The trick is to get more parts on the table.’ And that pretty much sums up what I do.
I’m variously described as a facilitator, consultant, or coach, asking questions and challenging perceptions to help people make better decisions about their organisation, their customers, or themselves. And that means I spend most of my time in rooms full of post-it notes.
I like to do this in two ways:
Great ideation starts with gathering perspectives from the past, present, and future, looking at what people say, do, shout about and search for, to overcome our own inherent biases and create interesting new connections.
‘You should only assign yourself to a position when you can equally argue the opposite view’
‘We study history not to know the future but to widen our horizons, to understand that our present situation is neither natural nor inevitable, and that we consequently have many more possibilities before us than we imagine.’
Yuval Noah Harari
‘The purpose of looking to the future is to disturb the present. It is only by being disturbed that we stand a better chance of shaping the future rather than being its victims’
Then, it’s about creating collaboratively, bringing together great people and giving them the space to think, share, and create exciting and achievable ideas.
‘To be interested, be interesting’
‘We don’t know where we get our ideas from. What we do know is that we do not get them from our laptops.’
‘It’s amazing what can be achieved when no-one minds who gets the credit’
Luckily for me, I have the pleasure of working with a wonderful group of people at The Foundation in London, helping organisations succeed by understanding what their customers really want. Usually, this means we get asked questions to do with customer-led strategy, customer experiences, and customer propositions, across industries and geographies.
So please do get in touch, and feel free to ask any questions or challenge any of my perceptions…