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Breakthrough strategies

Breakthrough strategies… They rarely come from the typical strategic planning effort. Nor do they typically result from the common practice of generating and evaluating strategic options. And they certainly aren’t inspired in a traditional board offsite, executive retreat, or brainstorming session. Instead, they start with individuals working on big, specific challenges who find novel ideas in unexpected places, creatively combine them into innovative strategies, and personally take those strategies to fruition—against all odds.

Culture eats strategy for lunch

Culture, like brand, is misunderstood and often discounted as a touchy-feely component of business that belongs to HR. It’s not intangible or fluffy, it’s not a vibe or the office décor. It’s one of the most important drivers that has to be set or adjusted to push long-term, sustainable success. It’s not good enough just to have an amazing product and a healthy bank balance. Long-term success is dependent on a culture that is nurtured and alive. Culture is the environment in which your strategy and your brand thrives or dies a slow death. Think about it like a nurturing habitat for success. Culture cannot be manufactured. It has to be genuinely nurtured by everyone from the CEO down. Ignoring the health of your culture is like letting aquarium water get dirty.

Inaugural Service Design Conference 3 May 2011

The first Service Design Conference was held earlier this month in Sydney, organised by Steve Baty and Donna Spencer – the team behind UX Australia. It was one stream with 7 presentations in scenic Darling Harbour. It was nice to not have to scurry between rooms for multiple tracks and good to know I wasn’t missing out on anything. The attendees were a UX crowd, and all seemed to be practitioners within the service design space. There was only a brief mention about the differences between service design and experience design. Everyone there wasn’t about to be held up on semantics. All the speakers dove straight in to describe how they work and deliver as service design practitioners.