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BLOG: Kissing Frogs – Open Innovation and a Revolution in Project Management

Date: Thursday, November 3, 2016 Date: Thursday, November 3, 2016 Time: 07:45 - 09:15 Location: The Corinthian Club, Glasgow

This is a past event

At our last breakfast of 2016 we welcomed back Comms Crooner and all round innovator Paul Fletcher.

As usual Paul dived in with a quick dig at host Julian (that’s me!)…in response to the intro I gave him.  Jokes aside Paul, who heads up ‘Enabling Innovation’, set the scene talking about innovation coming from successful ‘internal communications’.  “It’s about providing staff with the opportunity to contribute their ideas to a business”.  We heard how companies like 3M give their staff 15% paid free time a week, just to think…

It would seem that too many businesses just focus on product.  Yes, product and services have to be right but ignoring people’s ideas and innovation means the product might not actually be right.  This observation outlines the importance of co-creation with staff and customers to ensure the business offering and output works.  The result: products and services are delivered to market faster and with less risk.

We all experience change in both our lives and business, a change that is moving at a phenomenal pace so how do we create innovation culture to fit in with change?  Paul outlined the key elements:

  • Space – allow time
  • Action – experiment
  • Systems – IT
  • Alignment – strategy and purpose

…and remember to allow balance between ‘operational’ and ‘time to think’.

The topic of risk was also brought up and it would appear that many in business create risk around innovation and change, that doesn’t actually exist.  This kind of negative culture is rooted in many organisations large and small, whereas in reality risk can be reduced through innovation: collaboration and sharing of ideas creates a safer well thought through project plan.

Netflix can be described as creative destruction says Paul – it allows us to view films and TV in a totally different way, no one can argue that this new model isn’t successful and ground breaking.  Maybe the guys at Netflix had ‘fuzzy goals’ – meaning their ideas and innovation could bend and flow as the product grew.

Paul finished off his presentation ahead of a very busy Q&A by asking us to:

“discover don’t assume”


“if you’re under control, you’re not going fast enough”

This was a great finish to an outstanding year of topics and conversation and I’d like to take this opportunity on behalf of the Communications Breakfast team to thank everyone for their contribution:

  • Partners: MacRoberts, Muir Slicer and the Corinthian Club
  • Speakers
  • And you all for getting up early every first Thursday of the month

Have a great Christmas and New Year and we look forward to welcoming you all back after the winter break on 2nd February 2017 J – we’ll be in touch with details nearer the time.