About I/o

Inc. Magazine said it best, "In 'The Valley' the talk is all about building an innovative culture, proving that the view of innovation is broader than just launching. Brian Ardinger and Josh Berry give you great insight into the conversations that go on inside and outside "The Valley," as companies approach the latest ways to innovate and build an innovative culture."

 
 
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David J. Bland - Precoil

This is a conversation with David Bland we recorded live at our Lean Startup Week booth. David has been in the lean startup and corporate innovation space for many years, being involved with Eric Ries and Neo Innovation. Listen in to hear his valuable insights about internal innovation, assumption mapping, and what he thinks the next big thing will be among innovators.

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Eric Schulz - John Deere

Check out this episode with Eric Schulz, a lean startup coach at John Deere, that we recorded live in our booth at the Lean Startup Week 2016 in San Francisco. Eric tells about how they’re using lean methodologies from the valley to innovate at this iconic and massive company with big Midwestern tradition. 

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Simone Ahuja - Jugaad Innovation

In part 1 of our interview with best-selling author Dr. Simone Ahuja we learned about a different approach to innovation called "Jugaad." With a focus on innovating with limited resources, Simone explained how this method can be extremely helpful for corporate innovators and intrapreneurs who have an industry-changing idea but don't have the top-down support to make it happen. Come back next week for part 2 which will include some inspiring stories Simone tells in her 2017 book "Disrupt It Yourself" about intrapreneurs who overcame resource obstacles and used their passion to solve real problems. You can also connect with Simone on twitter @SimoneAhuja and follow her blog at hbr.com.

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Jim Hornthal - Launchpad Central

With over 187,000 hypotheses tested and almost 180,000 interviews conducted, LaunchPad Central is changing the landscape of innovation. Jim Hornthal explained to Josh how this organization is helping collect and manage learnings for startups and corporations and uses lean methodology to do it. Also this week: catch Brian and Josh in the Inside Outside Innovation booth at the Lean Startup conference. Interact with us on twitter @theiopodcast or come on down to the booth; we'd love to hear your perspective.

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Jill Tomandl - Smashbox

Smashbox changed the world of lipstick. This week, Jill Tomandl, the VP of product development and innovation, talked with Brian about their new 3-D printed lipstick line. She shared details about the design process, their marketing strategy, and how they took the dynamics of the beauty product world into consideration through all of it.

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Kyle Nicholas McCray - American Pacific Mortgage

If you're going to change things, the top leadership has to want change, too. That was one important thing we learned from Kyle Nicholas McCray as he told us about managing innovation at American Pacific Mortgage. While American Pacific has set up tents in both general camps of innovation, Kyle also told us about the skills and strategies he and his team are developing especially for disruption. If you want to learn more about investments they're making or the amazing success they've experienced so far with startup-partnership, visit their website at apmortgage.com or connect with Kyle on Twitter @_thedisruptor.

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Diana Kander - Author of "All in Startup" 

This week we revisited an interview from our previous podcast season with New York Times Bestselling author Diana Kander. Passionate about entrepreneurial education, Diana talked with Brian about her innovative book "All In Startup," the benefits of starting things outside the valley, and why it's hard to get people to take a free dollar. Connect with Diana at dianakander.com, and on Twitter @dianakander.

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Jess Knox - Startup Champions Network

This week Brian got the chance to talk with Jess Knox, the chairman of Startup Champions Network. Jess has a passion for creating sustainable jobs and finding new market opportunities in the places big corporations might overlook. Listen to find out how lobsters might help facilitate startup-corporate innovation.

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Christina Bechtold - Samsung and Empire Angels VC

How does a company that started as a noodle shop become a massive corporation with more yearly patents than Apple or Google? In today’s episode, Christina Bechhold, principle of strategic investments in Samsung’s Global Innovation Center, talks with Brian Ardinger about the innovation that makes it all possible. She also talked about the benefits of CVC, the importance of flexible founders and the ability to start something anywhere. Connect with Christina on Twitter@CMBechs and check out Samsung’s innovation center atsamsunggic.com

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Gregor Gimmy & Mathias Meyer - Founders, BMW Startup Garage

The German automaker developed the 'Venture Client' model to manage startup-company relationships. Qualifying startups receive a purchase order from BWM and a chance to build their technologies into the next generation of cars with one of the most innovative engineering teams in the world. Hear how the pair of founders took a Lean approach and found company-wide support for the Garage. We wrote about the Venture Client model here. 

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Talent and Innovation

Who are the best people to have on your innovation teams? Why are some employees better suited to manage risky projects? How do you identify them? In this episode, we clipped a few perspectives from guests through the first 20 episodes. There are a new critical set of skills for accelerating innovation in corporate environments. They can be trained, or they can be recruited - are your projects being managed by the right people? We wrote about people and innovation in a 5-part series here. 

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Lisa Kay Solomon - Skills for Innovation

Lisa Kay Solomon knows that details matter. In this interview with Brian she highlights that many of the necessary skills for innovation aren't taught in typical educations and that top support is crucial for internal innovation to get momentum. Her book "Design a Better Business: New Tools, Skills, and Mindsets for Strategy and Innovation" gives practical advice for corporate innovators and includes dozens of case studies so that you're prepared for even the most finite aspect of your innovation process. Find a preview of her book at designabetterbusiness.com and continue the conversation on Twitter @lisakaysolomon. 

 
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Aya Zook, Microsoft

This week Josh talked with Aya Zook, a global marketing director at Microsoft Accelerator. Aya discusses the evolution of Microsoft's accelerator, why competitor acquisition of startups don't worry him and much more. Microsoft is one of the more respected corporations in the startup ecosystem, so we were thrilled to get the perspective of one of the program's leaders. Connect with Aya and his team at microsoftaccelerator.com or twitter @msaccel.