Tag Archives: Guy Kawasaki

What If Innovation Is a Pleasant Shock?

A recent interview with Guy Kawasaki on Fast Company discussed influence, engagement, and innovation.  Guy spoke about the Influence Project, Fast Company’s current contest to find the most Influential Person Online.  When asked if what he was doing was gaining traction, and his response to negative reactions, Guy said, “If you’re not pissing people off, you’re not doing anything interesting…You enchant people more by being blunt and honest than trying to ameliorate everybody.”

This raised some thoughts for me about innovation that I shared with Guy, and would love to share with you.

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Dear Guy,

As always, I love your innovation.  I agree with your commitment to push the mark.  But maybe we don’t have to upset the balance for people; sometimes, it can simply be an “ah-hah” moment, a moment of surprise, a twist in new thinking for someone, a way we have improved their lives.

For example, we try to push the mark with employees by doing something innovative.  We’re age agnostic.  Sometimes 18 year olds end up leading our team meetings.  And they are quite good at it.

We want to honor our team wholistically. So people are free to continuously share their outside goals and we will do what we can to help them. One woman was into motorbikes. Another guy wants to work in space and at NASA.  Another woman likes honoring her cat who drinks out of a faucet — and won’t drink water any other way.  So we express interest from the largest to the smallest details. What’s important to them? And we strive to respond. We tailor information, help, provide education, give introductions, shoot them referrals, pull out articles, and think longterm about how we can help them with their goals.

What if innovation is a pleasant shock?

Warm Regards, Pamela