Change and the Crop Duster

Drive south through the state of Indiana on I-65, and before you hit Indianapolis you will come across an impressively large array of wind turbines, the new vertical symbols of energy self-reliance and innovation. I remember not so long ago, when this section of the road was just miles of cornfields, as far as the eye could see. The tallest things out here were telephone poles and the occasional power line - but that was then, and this scene is…

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External Radiance Projection 2010: A Christmas / Upgrade Story

No, I'm not a Christmas fanatic - but when you live in Chicago, you learn to look for nice weather in the weeks approaching Thanksgiving, to put up the lights before the wind and cold conspire to make it a painful experience. Basically, I gotta burn a vacation day - but why not? It's an opportunity to get away from the hassles of work in Corporate IT ... ... except this year, I finally had to deal with my outdated…

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Design Thinking and Process – Is It In You? (1 of 2)

Continuing a bit on my recent Design meme; I talk about the current relevance of design thinking, and the impact it can have on change management - but if it feels a bit foreign, how can you tell if you have it in you? Do You Think Visually? Interesting how Design always seems to have a strong visual component, even though functional design (like my data warehouse or the structure of my house) is not directly visible. Still, I thought…

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A Little Too Literal (or, How to Teach Innovation)

Spoiler alert: It can't be taught ... One of the questions I get - and I'm getting this a lot lately - is how to get people to think more analytically, less literally. We need folks to stop focusing on the mechanical task of manipulating reports with Excel just to compute some answers. How about learning to use Excel, Access, and whatever native query / data download tools are available - to pull some data from the system, just to…

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What Really Motivates Us? Insights for your Tech Team

Over the last month or so, a large number of authors in my RSS reader called attention to Dan Pink's 'Drive' video ... httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6XAPnuFjJc Props to Cool Infographics (home of the Caffeine Poster!) with the post that introduced me to the video. Key insight from Randy Krum: is this a video? A well done presentation? Or another innovative infographic? Global Nerdy (a site with style and substance - content does not match the title!) calls out that this idea has…

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