Workshops | Consulting
Book David to Give a Speech or Workshop
Robertson is available for a broad range of possible activities, from an entertaining 30 minute speech to an engaging and active three-day innovation workshop, and anything in-between. Whether you choose a speech or a workshop, the time spent will be energizing, challenging, enlightening, and fun. Depending on the needs of the group and level of seniority, some combination of the following four modules could be used.
What is Innovation?
A key part of any innovation workshop should be a discussion of how “innovation” is defined. How you define the term affects what you do and the results you get. In this short module we would talk about the differences between innovation, invention, and creativity. We’ll discuss what should be included in the definition and what should be left out, and the implications of the definition for a group’s innovation strategy.
Customer-centric design, as practiced by IDEO and championed in Tim Brown’s book Design Thinking, represents an easy-to-understand but difficult-to-do set of practices. In this module we’ll split the group into teams, give them a disguised but real innovation challenge, and let them compete to solve the challenge. The game is supported by a computer-based voting system that gives points and badges for solving innovation challenges. The result is a fun half-day that has powerful lessons for how to lead and carry out an innovation challenge.
Creative Idea Generation
Using Robertson’s “Innovation Techniques” iPad app, participants will learn a series of brainstorming and synthesis techniques to develop a product and bring it to market. The session will show how structured creativity techniques can result in more ideas, faster time to market, and better return on innovation investments. The app is provided free with the course.
Tournaments are a proven method for generating more and better ideas for new products and services. But not all tournaments are successful – there are nine different decisions that have to be made, and a wrong choice can cause a tournament to become an expensive disaster. This session will use a “live case” format, selecting a challenge from the group and designing a tournament to solve that challenge. The session will feature case studies of several successful and unsuccessful tournaments to help the participants decide how to structure and carry out a successful tournament of their own.
Discovering Innovation Opportunities
Even in the earliest stages of innovation – sometimes called the “fuzzy front end” – it’s possible to structure work so that teams have the direction they need to succeed. In this session we will talk about how to structure the early stages of innovation to get more and better ideas for new projects. We’ll learn some structured techniques for generating breakthrough ideas.
Adopting leading-edge innovation practices requires new management methods. In this module we’ll talk about the experiences of some of the most innovative companies in the world, and use their stories to illustrate the management challenges of user-centric innovation. We’ll start by doing a case on LEGO in 2003, when the company was near bankruptcy, and talk about the key management changes that led to the company’s spectacular resurgence. We’ll then show how their approach has also been used by such companies as Apple, Amazon, Makerbot, CarMax, Disney, and Valve.
Robertson is available for a broad range of possible activities, from an entertaining 30 minute speech to an engaging and active 2-day innovation workshop, and anything in-between.
“David, thank you very much for an inspiring workshop. The practical example of how LEGO has turned around their business by taking a new innovative approach in the product development as well as the business model has been an eye-opener for our organization. Your presentation has motivated our organization to make innovation management an important part of our business strategy.
– Manfred Schaffer, CEO, Sandvik Mining and Construction
“Through his experience with LEGO and other companies, Professor Robertson delivered an engaging, creative and interactive session with my team and colleagues. The result…our own reflection and introspection on the barriers and catalysts that hinder and nurture innovative spirit, skills and the ambition to create value.”
– JAMES MORTENSEN, CEO, PHILIP MORRIS INTERNATIONAL