J.D. Meier's Blog

Software Engineering, Project Management, and Effectiveness

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  • Blog Post: Management Innovation is at the Top of the Innovation Stack

    Management Innovation is at the top of the Innovation Stack.   The Innovation Stack includes the following layers: Management Innovation Strategic Innovation Product Innovation Operational Innovation While there is value in all of the layers, some layers of the Innovation Stack are more valuable...
  • Blog Post: No Slack = No Innovation

    "To accomplish great things we must dream as well as act." -- Anatole France Innovation is the way to leap frog and create new ways to do things better, faster, and cheaper. But it takes slack. The problem is when you squeeze the goose, to get the golden egg, you lose the slack that creates...
  • Blog Post: 3 Challenges to Help You Set New Benchmarks in Innovation

    If you want to change your game, you need to know what the key challenges are. Innovation is a game that you can play much better, if you know where and how to debottleneck it. In the book The Future of Management , Gary Hamel shares 3 challenges that he believes can help you unleash your organization...
  • Blog Post: The Drag of Old Mental Models on Innovation and Change

    “Don’t worry about people stealing your ideas. If your ideas are any good, you’ll have to ram them down people’s throats.” — Howard Aiken It's not a lack of risk taking that holds innovation and change back.  Even big companies take big risks all the time. The real barrier to innovation and change...
  • Blog Post: Who's Managing Your Company?

    One of the best books I’m reading lately is The Future of Management , by Gary Hamel. It’s all about how management innovation is the best competitive advantage, whether you look through the history of great businesses or the history of great militaries.  Hamel makes a great case that strategic...
  • Blog Post: The New Competitive Landscape

    "All men can see these tactics whereby I conquer, but what none can see is the strategy out of which victory is evolved." -- Sun Tzu If it feels like strategy cycles are shrinking, they are. If it feels like competition is even more intense, it is. If it feels like you are balancing between...
  • Blog Post: The Industry Life Cycle

    I’m a fan of simple models that help you see things you might otherwise miss, or that help explain how things work, or that simply show you a good lens for looking at the world around you. Here’s a simple Industry Life Cycle model that I found in Professor Jason Davis’ class, Technology Strategy (MIT...
  • Blog Post: Start Your Journey of Innovation and Build a Culture of Great Innovation

    In todays world, the mantra is innovate or die. You’re either climbing ahead or falling backward … there’s no hanging out in the middle. And some folks are actually leap frogging ahead. Disruptive innovation is keeping everybody on their toes. Whether you are re-imagining...
  • Blog Post: Now Available: Trends for 2014 at Your Fingertips

    It’s here.  I’ve published my Trends for 2014: Trends for 2014: The Year of Value Realization It’s a deep dive. Some things will look familiar.  Some things will look new.   Some things might surprise you. There are a lot of interesting patterns at play.   For example, baby...
  • Blog Post: The Innovative Team

    I’m working my way through my massive book backlog, and doing reviews as a I go along.   Yesterday, I wrote my review of Mastermind: How To Think Like Sherlock Holmes . Today, I read and wrote my review of The Innovative Team:  Unleashing Creative Potential for Breakthrough Results . It...
  • Blog Post: Microsoft Secret Stuff

    I’m a fan of anticipating the future, and creating the future.  Even speculation helps dream up what’s possible, and be ready for anything, when it happens.  And if you balance that with key trends , you can really stay on top of things. After all, what’s The Art of the Long View teach us? ...
  • Blog Post: Wearable Computing

    I was watching a video on Google Glass with Robert Scoble , and I couldn’t help but wonder about all the possibilities that technology can bring to the table. Wearable computing bridges the gap between the real world and the things we see in Sci-Fi movies. Of course, when we overlay information on our...
  • Blog Post: Trends for 2013 at a Glance

    Is your city smarter than a 5th grader?   This is a serious and significant post everything from Smart Cities to the top 4 mega-trends shaping technology for the next 10 years.  It’s the key trends for 2013 at your fingertips: Trends for 2013 – The Rise of the Entrepreneur If you’ve ever...
  • Blog Post: Nobody Wants to Invest

    A colleague sketched a visual of a recurring theme he runs into, where “nobody wants to invest” in the time, to take a step back, to leap frog forward.  The visual looked like this:     I’ve seen this pattern, too.  There are lots of reasons.  Many of them come down to change...
  • Blog Post: Why So Many Ideas Die or Don't Get Adopted

    I didn’t know whether to call this why adoption fails, or why ideas die, but regardless, they are deeply related. After all, one of the main reasons ideas die is that they don’t get adopted, so they fizzle out. It’s usage that gives an idea enough legs to blossom and bloom. I see the same recurring patterns...
  • Blog Post: Change Patterns: Strategies for Influence and Impact

    The Change Patterns are a very fundamental set of strategies you can add to your Change Leadership toolkit. I’m a fan of patterns.  In their simplest form, they are a great way to build a shared vocabulary and rapidly transfer knowledge and experience.  It’s a great thing when a single word...
  • Blog Post: The Rapid Research Method

    The Rapid Research Method is a way to speed up your product research.  It’s also a way to speed up ramp up time when you are leaning a new domain.  The Rapid Research Method is also a key for rapid innovation and rapid product design and development.  Lastly, the Rapid Research Method...
  • Blog Post: Short-Burst Work

    This is a walk down memory lane.  It’s an idea I was circulating circa 2005 so the words will seem stale now.  Periodically I like to flip through my old ideas to see how I’ve used them, what impact they made, and what I learned in the process. When I originally pitched the idea, there were...
  • Blog Post: Lessons Learned from the Most Successful Innovators

    What practices can we learn from the leaders in innovation?  How can you improve the success of your R&D efforts?  In "Smart Spenders, the Global Innovation 1000," an article in strategy+business magazine, Barry Jaruzelski, Kevin Dehoff, and Rakesh Bordia write about the key practices...
  • Blog Post: Innovation Life Cycle

    What are the key stages in the innovation life cycle?  What is the end-to-end value chain for bringing innovation to market? In "Smart Spenders, the Global Innovation 1000," an article in strategy+business magazine, Barry Jaruzelski, Kevin Dehoff, and Rakesh Bordia write about the four...
  • Blog Post: High-Leverage Strategies for Innovation

    What are the high-leverage strategies that the leaders in innovation use?  In "Smart Spenders, the Global Innovation 1000," an article in strategy+business magazine, Barry Jaruzelski, Kevin Dehoff, and Rakesh Bordia write about the successful strategies that the 94 high-leverage innovators...
  • Blog Post: Predictions for 2008

    Here's a quick rundown of my take on key trends. Trends are different from fads since they're longer-lasting and more pervasive. I don't have a crystal ball or a magic 8-ball, but I have 20/20 hindsight with the customers I work with and an eye for patterns. Last year, I saw more virtualization, more...
  • Blog Post: Human Shepherds and the Law of Relevancy

    Yesterday, Ed helped me word a "law" that I use for important decisions and that I see show up quite a bit in a number of places. It's the law of human relevancy. The Law of Relevancy No matter how relevant the information is, it's more relevant with the help of the right people. The Human Shepherd...
  • Blog Post: Scenarios in Practice

    Scenarios are a practical way to organize and focus your product design, development and release. (We use scenario-driven engineering in patterns & practices) Key Benefits Business value . You can use scenarios to evaluate business value. What pain does that scenario address? ... What opportunity...
  • Blog Post: Task-Analysis Grid for Communicating Product Design

    How do you communicate design decisions? … Srinath sent me a helpful link on the Task-Analysis Grid . A Task Analysis Grid is effectively columns of scenarios along with sub-tasks to complete the task. Here's the key points: The columns are organized by Before, After, and Future The sub-tasks...
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