We are excited to welcome our new Associate Marketing Director, Justine Daley.  She brings four years of experience in digital marketing and content strategy. Her creative and strategic background lends itself as an integral asset to the entrepreneurial culture and growth at The Garage Group. Welcome to the team, Justine!

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I grew up in Dayton, Ohio (Springboro to be exact), and went on to study Psychology, Professional Writing, and Interactive Media Studies at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.  Upon graduating, I pursued my passion for the startup mindset and content marketing by working at GNGF, a local Cincinnati startup law firm digital marketing agency. I am very involved in the marketing community here in Cincinnati and have served on the American Marketing Association – Cincinnati board for the past three years. I reside in Eden Park, less than a mile from the Cincinnati Art Museum, fueling one of my hobbies of checking out the art museums in every city I visit (my favorite so far has been the Seattle Art Museum.) Some of my other hobbies include rowing, hosting wine and cheese nights, and binge watching The West Wing.

So, you jumped into The Garage Group. What made you decide to join us? 

I jumped in because of my overarching passion for growing businesses. In my role, I’m uniquely positioned to not only enable The Garage Group to grow but in doing so, also be part of the innovative growth for the big corporations with whom we partner. I was also very excited to join this awesome team of voracious readers and strong leaders; there is always something new to learn from someone or a new book suggestion to add to my long GoodReads list.

What does an “entrepreneurial approach to research and innovation” mean to you?

To me, this means being able to quickly solve problems with the audience always clearly in mind. This involves one of the most important steps: fully defining the problem and making sure that while you are solving for it, everyone stays focused on solving for the same thing. Through my startup experiences, I’ve learned that when teams are unable to do so, it prolongs the decision making processes.

What trends do you see in marketing, branding, or innovation at large companies that lend well to a more entrepreneurial approach?

Social advocacy, ethics, and transparency are becoming crucial pillars of brands. Millennials especially base their purchase decisions on their desire to be part of something that contributes to the common good and that they can stand behind ethically. We’ve seen social advocacy in brands such as TOM’s and Warby Parker, and transparency especially recently with companies like Twitter. This radical transparency and commitment to social advocacy is becoming less of a strategy and more of a necessity for companies to remain authentic and relevant to consumers. 

What’s inspiring you right now?

Normally I’d respond that a recent book I’d read (I’m currently reading Madame President: The Extraordinary Journey of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf) but I can’t stop thinking about how much I was inspired by Blink. Cincinnati recently held Blink, an inaugural city-wide light show featuring hundreds of local artists and local businesses. This festival transformed the city for the weekend. What was so inspiring to me is how an entire city became so engaged in this free community, art-focused event. Blink brought thousands of people into the city and gave them an incredibly unique way to experience art and Cincinnati. My appreciation for art and the Cincinnati community has increased tenfold, and I know it has for others as well.

What is your spirit animal?

I’ve always had a kinship with Giraffes because of their standout height. I’m quite tall but from an even taller family; I bet nobody ever asked Giraffes if they play basketball though…

What’s your favorite innovation that’s come out in the past year?

I’ve been a Spotify user since its infancy, and an innovation that they’ve released in the past year is their “Discover” playlists, which automatically enables users to discover new music based on their listening history and patterns. Just one example of how this company uses user data to improve their customer’s experiences and why I’ve continued my loyalty with them despite the rise of Apple Music and Amazon Prime Music. 

Tell me two truths and a lie about yourself.

All members of my immediate family have an undergraduate degree in Psychology.

I am a contributing author of a book.

I’ve been to Hawaii eleven times.

 

We are ecstatic to welcome our newest Innovation and Growth Strategist Sara Valasek. She brings 10+ years of experience in digital strategy, media planning, and experiential marketing across multiple categories. Her creative and strategic background lends itself as an integral asset to the entrepreneurial culture and growth at The Garage Group. Welcome to the team, Sara!

Tell us a bit about yourself. 
I grew up in a small town outside of Cincinnati where the majority of my family still lives today. I studied Magazine Journalism and Advertising at Ohio University.  After learning I may have to do a tour of duty fact checking at Automotive News before I could write for a major publication, I embarked on the advertising path after graduating.  I worked for a couple of major media agencies in Chicago for the first five years of my career before returning home to Cincinnati. In Cincinnati, I continued my agency career focused on mass and personalized media planning, digital strategy and creative, word-of-mouth, advocacy and experiential marketing. My background is diverse in agency-client leadership with CPG and retail brands. I currently live in Oakley with my husband, Brian, and our two dogs, Bauer and Gus. We loved the TV show, 24, so much that we named our dog after Jack Bauer (aka Keifer Sutherland). I enjoy cooking, running and going to as many concerts that budget and time allow.

Something interesting people might not know about you?
I studied in France during college and was nearly fluent in French during my time there. I was blessed to be able to live with a family during my stay and they gave me a proper immersion in French culture. Prior to popular belief, I know the French to be a proud and loving people and they left a wonderful impression on me.

So, you jumped into The Garage Group. What made you decide to join us?
I’ve always been interested and drawn to entrepreneurial ideas and approaches to work. I met Jason at an industry event soon after TGG was launched.  His explanation of the business was very interesting to me and so I signed up for the email newsletter. With each newsletter, I would devour the contents and maintained curiosity about this company over the past few years. After meeting members of the team, it became clear to me that not only the work but also the way the work gets done is extremely unique.  I am eager to finally feel like an entrepreneur and work in the positive culture that’s developed here.

What does an “entrepreneurial approach to research and innovation” mean to you?
It means challenging traditional ways of working and accepted business practices that have been around for many years. It’s no secret that the majority of innovation launches fail after using traditional approaches that are complex and take several years. Testing new methodologies and collaboration techniques that have been embraced by entrepreneurs can give a shock to “the way its always been done” to increase success and ultimately satisfy consumer needs.

What trends do you see in marketing, branding, or innovation at large companies that lend well to a more entrepreneurial approach?
After spending my last four years at a data science company, I’ve observed many large companies trying to tackle and understand the Big Data world. Most companies acknowledge the value and potential business impact this data holds, but are still struggling to make insights from the data easily actionable within complex working organizations. I believe the companies that are finding ways to truly integrate a nimble data strategy into their business practices will be able to leapfrog ahead.

What’s inspiring you right now?
We are unfortunately in a season of many natural disasters with Hurricane Harvey, Irma and the devastating earthquake in Mexico. I’m inspired by the people who are living through these crippling times, picking themselves and others up and relying on their faith to move ahead each day. I’m also inspired by people all around the world who are helping, however, they can. It’s a great reminder of the core goodness we all have and how much people really do want to support each other.

What is your spirit animal?
I would have to choose a lion. You can’t judge a lion by its large teeth and mane alone. While fierce in their hunting prowess, lions are incredibly social animals and rely heavily on their pride for survival. They care about and are invested in each other. I love the dichotomy of being strong, brave and utterly competent in their environment while also ultimately valuing their community and loving each other.

What is something you believe that almost nobody agrees with you on?
Yanni is an amazing musician! Yes, I said it. I LOVE Yanni! I started listening to him in high school and was surprised I could love modern instrumental music that much. If Yanni is within a couple hundred mile radius of Cincinnati, you’ll know where to find me!

What’s your favorite innovation that’s come out in the past year?
While it’s not technically brand new in the past year, I’ve recently started trying a food delivery service, Blue Apron. I’ve been hesitant to adopt this new trend based on the uncertainty of the recipes, freshness of ingredients and disbelief of how a box of fresh food can sit on your porch all day and be ok. But, it is ok and delicious too! I’m still playing with this new type of service to see how it can best fit into my routine, but the service itself is very impressive.

Tell me two truths and a lie about yourself.
I love to skydive.
I once had a conversation with Tim Robbins about The Shawshank Redemption in the Paris airport.
I have 5 brothers and sisters.

In the face of dramatic market shifts and uncertainty, continuing to adapt and learn quickly have become top priorities for Bigcos wishing to remain relevant. Smaller, growth mindset-driven Startups are creating disruptive value propositions and are able to adjust to changing market conditions much quicker than their fixed mindset Bigco counterparts. Sensing a need to shift, corporate leaders are starting to leverage approaches like Lean Startup and Design Sprints to efficiently pursue disruptive opportunities, but aren’t fully maximizing those approaches because of a lack of hustle. That is, fully embracing the key entrepreneurial skills and mindsets required to truly activate the power of Lean Innovation capability within their organizations.

Hustle is at the core of who we are at The Garage Group. With our Startup-inspired mission, we work to maximize the efforts of every part of our team in order to drive better and more effective results. In our Hustle Handbook, we outline the five behaviors that are critical to innovate, disrupt, and make progress in the face of uncertainty:

1. Relentlessly Pursue the “Why”
Companies, ideas, and initiatives all start with a vision for the future, and yet, many businesses have a difficult time clearly articulating their purpose. Figuring out the “why” behind what you do far outweighs the importance of the “what” or the “how”. Simon Sinek, author of best-selling book “Start With Why”, is an avid believer in the “why” of a process much more than the process itself. In his book, he explains “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” Aligning your company on its purpose and mission decreases dissonance within the organization, and allows ideas and projects to move forward faster. Sinek references powerful examples like Martin Luther King Jr.’s leadership in the Civil Rights movement and Apple’s commitment to challenge the status quo and produce innovative products to demonstrate the importance of understanding why you exist and why you get out of bed every morning. For many entrepreneurs, the “why” of their business often aligns with their personal goals and passions, creating momentum to drive action within their Startup. Knowing the “why” of your company gives vision, and with vision comes focus, resilience, and influence–three key factors to success. For Bigco leaders, identifying your “why” and connecting it to your work often times is the missing link to having the courage to take a risk on a new approach or to have the grit to stick with a challenging project even after facing some adversity.

2. Squeeze the Juice out of your Resources
Startups are almost always facing a resource constraint, whether it is time, money, or people. Because of this, success comes from teams who optimize all of their resources, squeezing the juice out of them. Bigco leaders generally have resources at their disposal, but don’t always see them or fully utilize them. To open your mind to resource possibilities, we encourage you to search across three primary areas from which you can squeeze the juice– your own strengths, your network, and any physical assets available at your disposal. This can manifest in an infinite number of ways, from engaging your network to quick, scrappy consumer testing on a product idea. Leaders expand their influence and access when they leverage their resources effectively by not only asking “What can I get?” but also “What can I give?” Bigcos have a unique opportunity in this space, with a vast resource pool to draw from. By squeezing the juice out of your resources, you are engaging in the full potential of yourself as well as your company.

3. Embrace the Growth Mindset
There are two kinds of mindsets: a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. A fixed mindset says that my abilities are fixed and my value is based on my ability to do well against those skills. A growth mindset says that my abilities are malleable, with my value being placed on working hard and continuing to grow. Leaders who hustle are those who continue to push, try, and (inevitably) fail in pursuit of a growth mindset. Centered around an individual’s willingness to fail, a growth mindset fosters resilience; it arms you with the grit to tackle tough challenges, and find success. While entrepreneurs tend to embody the growth mindset more than most, it is not an exclusive commodity. The beauty of the growth mindset is that you are not born with or without it, but instead can train it like a muscle by constantly pushing yourself–and your company–to learn, try, and do new things. Encouraging a growth mindset can be as simple as reading an interesting article, or listening to a podcast. Ideas can come from unexpected places; a growth mindset is simply the vehicle that gets you to those places.

4. Showcase Agility
Agility is a key element of staying with and getting in front of changing market conditions. Startups can and will pivot their businesses on-demand to capitalize on opportunities. Too often, we see Bigcos who are reluctant to adjust to changing markets or new information, and struggle to act on opportunities quickly. Companies that critically assess their current position against their future opportunities can rapidly make decisions in order to pursue their vision. Asking questions like “Are we actually talking to the right people?” or “Given this situation, what has to be true to move forward?” can help a company to be proactive instead of reactive, allowing for a critical pivot before it’s too late. Due to a constantly evolving landscape, even the best-laid plans must be modified as time goes on. By being receptive and open to that change, Bigcos and Startups alike can put themselves in the optimum position for success.

5. Operate with Urgency
Having the drive to push your business forward each and every day is one of the key factors when operating with urgency. Urgency is the motivation each day to stay on top and to respond quickly when you get knocked down. Steve Case, founder of AOL, showcases the importance of urgency when referring to the first wave of internet adoption. Microsoft had just released MSN, a direct competitor to AOL, and was the first company to offer unlimited services for a flat fee, undercutting AOL’s prices. Case, knowing that time was of the essence, convinced his team to work through the weekend so that the following Monday, AOL could announce its own updated pricing. In doing so, AOL was able to avoid MSN taking a large chunk of their customers while simultaneously opening the door for a new revenue source–online advertising. Operating with urgency enables Bigcos to avoid getting left behind, as well as capitalize on new, momentary opportunities.

In this fast-paced world, the ability to hustle is crucial to adapting on-demand. Thinking and working like an entrepreneur encourages exciting ideas, innovation, and progress, no matter the size of the company. For more on our Hustle Handbook, reach out! We’ve love to learn more about your current challenges and take your team through an in-depth training session on the Hustle Handbook.

The Garage Group specializes in codifying startup principles for corporates. We love rolling up our sleeves and figuring out how to leverage emerging thinking along with tried and true methods on each of our projects. Increasingly, we’ve been using foundational Jobs to Be Done theory to ensure the innovation that we’re leading is powerful and resonates with consumers (because who needs more irrelevant innovation?!).

We’re not engineers…so what does Jobs to be Done theory have to do with engineering? It was actually born out of a meeting in six sigma process improvement when Anthony Ulwick realized that corporations should be studying the process people are trying to execute when using a product, rather than making improvements to the product itself.

You’ve probably heard that classic line, “People don’t want to buy a 1/4 inch drill, they want a 1/4 inch hole!” Jobs to be Done theory is just that; consumers aren’t looking to merely purchase a product or service, they are looking to “hire” a product to get a job done and fulfill a desired outcome, which in turn requires a current solution to be “fired.” Clayton Christensen later popularized the idea through his Harvard platform; you can check out one of our favorite recent JTBD case studies featured in HBR here which discusses McDonald’s milkshake.

The reason why most new products fail in market isn’t because they’re a bunch of bad ideas. In fact, they might have been great ideas. But as ideation worksessions become increasingly commonplace within companies big and small, innovation teams run the risk of assuming that a larger number of creative ideas will solve growth challenges…even without fully understanding the consumers’ needs. Unfortunately, a higher number of “good ideas” that don’t fully meet consumers’ needs is just invention, not innovation.

Unfortunately, a higher number of “good ideas” that don’t fully meet consumers’ needs is just invention, not innovation.

What we love about Jobs to Be Done is that it takes the guesswork out of why an innovation is successful in market vs. why it’s not. When a product or service expertly connects the consumer pain points and unmet needs to their desired outcome for that job, and then delivers better than the current solution for the same price (or less), there’s a high likelihood the product will be successful in market. In fact, according to Ulwick’s research, product or service ideas using Jobs to Be Done Theory have a success rate of 86% compared to a success rate of 17% using traditional ideation methods.

It’s not as simple as walking up to consumers and asking, “what Job is this fulfilling for you?”, though. We’ve found that it takes some intentional research design, some dot connecting, and even some practice translating pain points into “jobs” in order to put the full Job to Be Done consumer story together. At The Garage Group, we go about this using a number of qualitative research methods such as Digital Ethnography, In-Person interviews, team-led “missions,” and Social Media Ethnography.

Once consumer needs have been fully flushed out, pain points have been transferred into Jobs to Be Done, and new concepts have been built to better deliver against them, it’s great to do a check-in with the target audience to see if the new concept actually delivers better on the Job, warranting them “hiring” the new concept.

Two practical questions to ask about new concepts:

  1. What situations would you picture using this in? (Does it match the Job situation it was designed for?)
  2. Would you purchase this in addition to what you’re already buying, or would this be a replacement? (Did they see enough merit in the new product to fire the old one? Or, is this incremental growth?

Whether you’re using the full Jobs to Be Done framework or using it as a lens to push your team to drive more consumer-relevant innovation, Jobs to Be Done thinking is a valuable principle to explore across all industries.

Want more JTBD resources? This interview script from Alan Klement breaks a Jobs to Be Done Interview down into more granularity.

The Garage Group helps corporate teams and brands innovate and grow like startups.

Bigco leaders who want to stay relevant in an increasingly turbulent market are faced with a choice: to rely on the same old processes to drive innovation and growth, or to fully jump into entrepreneurial methods that embrace uncertainty and change. If you’re looking to jumpstart that entrepreneurial path forward, you’re in the right place. Our team at The Garage Group recently reflected on and captured 50 resources to guide you and your team through understanding what Lean Innovation is and how your organization can begin to adopt it.

Definitely spend some time reading and reflecting on the list we’ve assembled, but note that the real learning comes from when you roll up your sleeves and hustle to start applying these approaches to your tough innovation and growth challenges. And, as you’ll find, Lean Innovation isn’t reserved for Startups, and isn’t limited to new product or venture development. Rather, Lean Innovation has a scope that can be applied to every aspect of your business, providing every function in your organization with the skills to work smarter, quicker, and more disruptively.

 

FOUNDATION – UNDERSTAND THE APPROACHES BEHIND LEAN INNOVATION

1. THE LEAN STARTUP
Eric Ries’ The Lean Startup is a foundational read for understanding and implementing The Lean Startup methodology.

2. SPRINT
Developed by Google Ventures, Sprint shows leaders how to run a five day Design Sprint in order to quickly tackle elements of tough growth challenges.

3. VALUE PROPOSITION DESIGN
Value Proposition Design provides a helpful framework for identifying the root of consumer problems, and designing products and services to meet their needs.

4. TRACTION
With 19 potential user engagement channels and interviews with founders of companies such as Kayak and Wikipedia, Traction provides the resources and know-how to help your idea gain momentum and build a consumer base.

5. BUSINESS MODEL GENERATION
This comprehensive deep dive on the Business Model Canvas offers leaders the tools and strategies needed to challenge outdated business models or create new ones.

6. LEAN STARTUP IS DEAD – LONG LIVE LEAN STARTUP
This Forbes article tackles some of the misconceptions surrounding the Lean Startup methodology for a broader understanding of what it is, and how to use it.

7. LEAN INNOVATION: DESIGN THINKING MEETS LEAN STARTUP FOR THE ENTERPRISE
Forbes interview with Brant Cooper, author of The Lean Entrepreneur, provides a foundational understanding of Lean Innovation, and how it can manifest in corporations.

8. THE FATHER OF LEAN STARTUP THINKS YOU NEED TO START UP
An interview with Lean Startup author, Eric Ries, provides some background on the creation of Lean Startup, as well as gives leaders some advice on implementing The Lean Startup Methodology into their own work.

9. DON’T BUILD WHEN YOU BUILD, MEASURE, LEARN
This article from Strategyzer gives a quick guide on building MVP’s (Minimum Viable Products) in order to maximize learning and minimize risk when testing your idea’s critical assumptions.

10. OUR APPROACH TO INNOVATION IS DEAD WRONG
Author of All In Startup, Diana Kander gives an entertaining and compelling TEDx talk identifying the flaws in the current, outdated model of innovation and provides the steps companies of all sizes can take to pursue a leaner model.

11. A REFRESHER ON A/B TESTING
A/B Testing is a classic method to test two variants of something (like a Facebook Ad) in order to identify which is most successful, without investing loads of time, energy, or money. Here is a quick refresher on (or intro to) A/B Testing.

12. 4 TYPES OF PRODUCT RISK
Part of vetting an idea using Lean Thinking is making sure that the idea is viable in the market before investing loads of time, energy, and money. Erik Starck identifies the four questions you should ask before building a product.

 

MINDSET – WAYS TO START THINKING LIKE AN ENTREPRENEUR

13. THE HUSTLE HANDBOOK: BIGCO SECRET TO SPEED, DISCOVERY, AND GRIT
Whether you’re a Bigco trying a startup-inspired approach, or a startup looking to take on new challenges, our Hustle Handbook guides you on the five behaviors critical to successful and disruptive innovation.

14. THE INNOVATOR’S DNA
The Innovator’s DNA explores how major companies like Google, Amazon, and Apple have become disruptive innovators, and the skills and mindsets required to do so in your own Bigco.

15. MATTHEW SYED – WHY YOU SHOULD HAVE YOUR OWN BLACK BOX
Matthew Syed’s TEDx talk touches on the growth mindset and the importance of establishing your own “Black Box,” in order to acknowledge failure, confront mistakes, and come up with solutions inside your organization.

16. MINDSET
In this book, psychologist Carol Dweck explains the power of having a fixed vs. growth mindset; that it’s not just our abilities or talent that makes us successful, but our mindset. This is a must-read for those who lead people, including parents, CEOs, supervisors, and teachers.

17. A LEAN STARTUP MINDSET IGNITES AMAZON-LIKE INNOVATION
Andy Cars, founder of Lean Ventures, details the benefits a Lean Startup mindset can have to an organization, and details a few ways that leaders can start thinking lean.

 

EMPATHY – BUILD EMPATHY TO CONNECT WITH CONSUMERS AND MEET THEIR NEEDS

18. JOBS TO BE DONE
A theory invented in the 70’s, Jobs To Be Done, by Anthony Ulwick, teaches leaders how to identify consumer wants and needs in order to design products, services, and businesses that meet those wants and needs.

19. JOBS TO BE DONE, THE SECRET SAUCE BEHIND GREAT IDEAS
For any successful company, big or small, understanding the consumer is critical. That’s why we focus on Jobs theory; it’s the key to developing ideas that solve real problems for consumers.

20. EMPATHY VS. SYMPATHY
Empathy is a key component of understanding your consumers wants and needs. This animated video of Dr. Brene Brown’s talk explains the differences between empathy and sympathy, and provides some quick tips on connecting with others.

21. 4 MISCONCEPTIONS ON JOBS TO BE DONE
From Experiencing Information, this article provides a foundation on what Jobs To Be Done theory is by tackling what Jobs To Be Done Theory isn’t.

22. SHERYL SANDBERG – THE IMPORTANCE OF AUTHENTIC COMMUNICATION
In this video, Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook and author of Lean In, touches on how to authentically communicate within the workplace, and explains how it promotes better, faster, and leaner decision making within an organization.

23. A SCRIPT TO KICKSTART YOUR JOBS TO BE DONE INTERVIEWS
Jobs To Be Done is a great tool for identifying consumer needs quickly and effectively. Here is a quick script to guide your consumer interviews and get the most out of them.

24. BUILD CUSTOMER EMPATHY BY LISTENING TO THEIR STORIES
Customers are the lifeblood of any company, and understanding your customer’s wants and needs is a key component of Lean Innovation. Here are some interview tips to help you gain valuable consumer insights.

 

APPLICATION – STEPS AND GUIDES TO INCORPORATE LEAN INNOVATION INTO YOUR ORGANIZATION

25. HOW TO BUILD A STARTUP
In this free online course, Steve Blank teaches leaders how to generate ideas and validate them through consumer feedback. This course is a step-by-step guide on how to jumpstart your idea and successfully act on it.

26. RUNNING LEAN
Ash Maurya’s book provides the tools and strategy needed to quickly and effectively generate, test, and execute winning ideas without wasting resources.

27. THE LEAN PRODUCT PLAYBOOK
This guide provides the process for effectively creating products consumers love via MVP prototyping, consumer feedback, and iterative market testing. The Lean Product Playbook takes Lean Innovation and directly applies it to product development.

28. 11 ENABLERS FOR SPRINT SUCCESS AGAINST INNOVATION AND GROWTH STRATEGY CHALLENGES
Check out this list of lessons learned from running Design Springs in Bigcos.

29. LEAN ANALYTICS
Authors Alistair Croll and Benjamin Yoskovits provide the steps for utilizing data to help your organization make leaner, smarter business decisions.

30. WHY MARK ZUCKERBERG RECENTLY WARNED ENTREPRENEURS AGAINST CHASING ‘EUREKA!’ MOMENTS
Sometimes, loads of resources will go into bringing an idea to market, only to realize that there is no need for it. Here are three quick ways to vet your idea before chasing it down the rabbit hole.

31. STARTUP OWNER’S MANUAL
This foundational book offers a comprehensive, step-by-step look into how to take an idea and turn it into a business. Targeted to entrepreneurs but applicable for any size company, this book is grounded in lean principles. Along with his book, check out Blank’s comprehensive list of Startup Tools.

32. THE INNOVATOR’S METHOD
Nathan Furr and Jeff Dyer share an integrated framework (Design Thinking + Lean Startup and others) for quickly getting an idea all the way through the development pipeline and getting it to market.

33. HACKING GROWTH
Hacking Growth provides a foundational look at growth hacking, and provides instruction on how to implement it into your organization.

34. THE 6 PRINCIPLES OF A LEAN, MEAN, MARKETING STRATEGY
Lean Startup and Innovation methodologies apply to all scopes of a business. Here are six tips on applying Lean thinking to your marketing strategy.

35. HOW TO START A MOVEMENT
Lean Innovation is a movement, and it’s catching on. If you’re looking for some inspiration to start the Lean Innovation movement within your Bigco, Derek Sivers’ quick, 3-minute TED Talk might be the answer.

36. HOW TO LOOK BEFORE YOU LEAP
This article gives a quick guide on how to test your business assumptions in order to stay lean and conserve your resources for your top ideas.

 

CASES OF SUCCESS – SEE HOW OTHER BIGCO’S SUCCESSFULLY INCORPORATED LEAN INNOVATION INTO THEIR WORK, AND HOW YOU CAN TOO

37. PIVOT
In this video, Eric Ries, author of Lean Startup, explains what it means to pivot and provides examples of companies at a crossroads of failure and success that were able to pivot towards success.

38. THE BARRIERS BIG COMPANIES FACE WHEN THEY TRY TO ACT LIKE LEAN STARTUPS
This HBR article confronts the challenges that Bigco’s face, the benefits of adopting Lean Startup Practices, and how some companies have already made it happen within their organizations.

39. LEAN INNOVATION MANAGEMENT: MAKING CORPORATE INNOVATION WORK
Steve Blank provides a Lean Innovation POV on how to manage your Bigco’s innovation pipeline.

40. HOW BIG COMPANIES CAN INNOVATE
The heads of Intuit, Idealab, and Autodesk discuss how their businesses embraced innovation, and how other Bigco’s can do it too.

41. HOW GE BUILT AN INNOVATION LAB TO RAPIDLY PROTOTYPE APPLIANCES
HBR provides an inside look into how GE set up their innovation labs, and how it’s driven success.

42. RETHINKING LEAN STARTUP AT A BIG CORPORATE
Interview with Michael Nir, a Lean Startup coach, about his work with a major healthcare insurance provider in establishing Internal Startups and Lean Startup Methodology.

43. LEAN STARTUP METHODOLOGY INFOGRAPHIC
Check out this Innovation Excellence infographic of what the Lean Startup Methodology looks like, and how it can manifest in a business.

44. LEAN STARTUP COMES HOME
This Medium article details a Lean Startup approach Toyota took to pursue a potential growth opportunity for the company. Tons of practical examples and lessons learned.

45. THE TWO STRATEGIES COMPANIES SHOULD USE TO INNOVATE
Every company is different, therefore no two companies’ approaches to innovation will be the same. Here are two strategies to help shape your Lean Innovation approach.

46. THE GENIUS OF FRUGAL INNOVATION
Navi Radjou, based in Silicon Valley, details the benefits of Frugal Innovation – another term for Lean Innovation – in India, where resources are scant for many entrepreneurs. Radjou elaborates on the application of Frugal Innovation within larger corporations, and the success it brings.

 

GET OUT OF THE OFFICE – ENTREPRENEURIAL RESOURCES IN YOUR OWN NETWORK

47. LOCAL MEETUPS & EVENTS
Connect with local innovators and entrepreneurs to learn about their lessons learned. Check out local talks on innovation or entrepreneurship or on-going Meetups (Lean Startup Circle in your City!), and forge new contacts, or jump into a Startup Weekend and become an entrepreneur for a weekend.

48. LEAN STARTUP CONFERENCE
The Lean Startup Conference brings Lean Startup leaders and experts together to share best best practices, and tools for building Lean Innovation capability in your Bigco.

49. FIND PEOPLE TACKLING SIMILAR CHALLENGES
Look across your business, in your network, and for peers on LinkedIn who may be trying to build the same Lean Innovation capabilities as you. They’re creating new knowledge everyday, and you should be tapping into those experiences.

50. HUSTLE TO START
Spend time building a foundation with these concepts, but don’t stop there. Hustle to start applying as quickly as you can. That’s where the real muscle building starts to take place.

We hope these resources are helpful and inspiring as you and your team are on the way to building a strong, Lean Innovation foundation. As always, we’d love to learn more about your specific context and challenges, and can share how we can help accelerate your Lean Innovation capability development efforts. Let’s talk!