January 22, 2017
The Art of Self-Acknowledgment

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If you're a creative person regularly involved with starting new projects -- the kind unlikely to get results overnight -- here's a simple practice to keep you in a positive frame of mind and save you from the all-too-familiar phenomenon of depressing yourself by focusing on the cup being half empty.

Continue reading "The Art of Self-Acknowledgment"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 02:37 PM | Comments (0)

January 16, 2017
The International Day of Compassion + Kindness

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As a former political speechwriter and present day observer of the oddball dynamics accompanying the fast approaching U.S. Presidential Inauguration, I have developed an increasing respect for a man who, my fact checkers have assured me, has never watched CNN, FOX News, or Celebrity Apprentice -- Isaac Newton. Yes, Isaac Newton -- the bewigged, 17th century English physicist after whom the Third Law of Physics ("For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction") has been named.

Continue reading "The International Day of Compassion + Kindness"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 03:17 PM | Comments (0)

January 13, 2017
The 10 Personas of an Effective Brainstorm Facilitator

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Allow me to make a wild guess. You have participated in more than a few brainstorm sessions in your life. Yes?

Continue reading "The 10 Personas of an Effective Brainstorm Facilitator"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 12:11 AM | Comments (5)

January 05, 2017
A Sneak Preview Into the Art and Science of Brainstorming

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Brainstorming, in most companies, is broken. Or, if not broken, breaking. Or, if not breaking, highly impaired. Those of us at Idea Champions are dedicated to changing the game -- and have been doing so for 25 years.

Here's a super simple way to see (and hear) where we're coming from. Intrigued? Click here and tell us more about your need. Or click here and let us know how to contact you.

About our brainstorm facilitation training
What our clients say
In case you think brainstorming is a waste of time

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 06:52 PM | Comments (0)

January 03, 2017
What I Learned from Being Heckled at a Keynote Presentation

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Every person who has ever had a job has experienced at least one "moment of truth" in their life -- a time when all the chips were on the table and the decision of whether to go "all in" or not had to be made.

Continue reading "What I Learned from Being Heckled at a Keynote Presentation"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 09:39 PM | Comments (0)

January 02, 2017
Have Pluma, Will Travel

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I will be on a 10 week writer's retreat in San Miguel de Allende working on my next book, Storytelling for the Revolution. During that time I will have about 7 hours each week for free lance writing and editing projects. Contact me if you have the need: mitch@ideachampions.com

My recent book

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 12:30 PM | Comments (0)

December 31, 2016
Two Dogs Dining

Break time. Stop saving the world (or your company) for the moment and simply enjoy this video. Laughing aloud allowed.

Idea Champions

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 06:20 PM | Comments (0)

December 29, 2016
Big Blues From the Viagra People

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In 1999, I conceived and co-founded (with Paul Kwicienski) the world's first interactive business blues band, Face the Music.

The concept was a simple one: help organizations increase teamwork and decrease complaint by getting employees to write and perform original blues songs.

The concept resonated with a lot of industries, especially Big Pharma.

Oh yeah, they had the blues, lots of blues, like the "Now We Gotta Compete with Generic Drugs from Canada Blues," and the "No One Trusts the Drug Companies Anymore Blues," and the always popular, "Our Pipeline Is Empty, But Our Inbox is Full Blues."

So we weren't all that surprised when Pfizer came calling...

Continue reading "Big Blues From the Viagra People"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 01:56 AM | Comments (0)

December 27, 2016
Why Train People to Become Masterful Brainstorm Facilitators

Our brainstorm website
Brainstorm facilitation training
What our clients say

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 09:39 PM | Comments (0)

December 23, 2016
100 Awesome Quotes on What It Really Takes To Innovate

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1. "I want to put a ding in the universe." - Steve Jobs

2. "Ideas won't keep. Something must be done about them." - Alfred North Whitehead

3. "Intuition will tell the thinking mind where to look next." - Jonas Salk

4. "If you have always done it that way, it is probably wrong." - Charles Kettering

5. "Security is mostly a superstition. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing." - Helen Keller

Continue reading "100 Awesome Quotes on What It Really Takes To Innovate"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 10:48 PM | Comments (11)

December 18, 2016
Tis the Season to Tell Your Stories

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'Tis the season to tell your stories, folks! Your families are gathering. Your friends are coming to visit. The tribe is reconvening, whether it's around the fire, the dining room table, or the turkey in the kitchen. Wherever you find yourself, you will have lots of opportunities to share with others -- not just the gifts you bought at the mall, but the stories of your life -- memorable moments of truth that have moved you and are likely to move others.

THIS is what people will remember, not the device you give them, not the card, not the pumpkin pie. So tell your stories! And when others tell theirs, stop what you're doing and listen. Stories, well-told and well-listened, are one of the best ways to connect with others and REMEMBER what's truly important in this life.

My new book on storytelling
My new storytelling blog
The storytelling and innovation workshop

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

December 17, 2016
How to Facilitate Breakthrough Brainstorming Sessions for Your Clients in Three Hours or Less

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Here's the deal: You are one of the creatives in a high flying PR, Marketing, or Communications company and have been asked by one of your clients to lead an upcoming brainstorming session. That's the good news. The-not-so-good news? Even though you're an idea-generating machine, facilitating sessions that bring out brilliance in others is not your forte. And to raise the stakes even higher, your client wants more than just "ideas". Your client wants remarkable, actionable ideas and wants the session to be highly engaging, energizing, and worth their precious time. Get it? The heat is on, big time.

Idea Champions can teach you how

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 04:08 PM | Comments (0)

December 16, 2016
TAKING YOUR ORGANIZATION'S PULSE: The Current Reality CheckUp

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Just like a GPS needs to know where you are in order to guide you to your destination, savvy business leaders need to know where their organization is in order to navigate its way forward. Enter Idea Champions' Current Reality Check-Up -- a highly engaging needs assessment process that provides movers and shakers with deep insight into the mindset, perspective, needs, and values of their workforce and customers.

Continue reading "TAKING YOUR ORGANIZATION'S PULSE: The Current Reality CheckUp"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 01:54 PM | Comments (0)

December 15, 2016
24 Quotes on Good Communication

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1. "The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn't said." - Peter Drucker

2. "The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place." - George Bernard Shaw

Continue reading "24 Quotes on Good Communication"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 09:01 PM | Comments (0)

December 14, 2016
A Cool, New Way to Capture Ideas

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If you are reading this blog, I am 95 percent certain you value the power of BIG IDEAS. I'm also certain that you've experimented with various ways of capturing your big ideas: Notebooks. Voice memos. Post-its. Napkins. Whiteboards. Mind maps. And who knows how many other techniques. If so, you are likely to be intrigued by Chuck Frey's newly published guide about how to set up EVERNOTE as a way support a complete, end-to-end creative process. We like Chuck. You will, too.

Idea Champions
Brainstorm Champions

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 10:37 PM | Comments (0)

Great Quotes on Customer Service

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The following quotes are dedicated to the good people of Nations Roof, a forward-thinking client of ours who continues to impress us with their commitment to providing extraordinary customer service.

"Always keep in mind the old retail adage: Customers remember the service a lot longer than they remember the price." - Lauren Freedman

"The goal as a company is to have customer service that is not just the best, but legendary." - Sam Walton

"Make a customer, not a sale." - Katherine Barchetti

Continue reading "Great Quotes on Customer Service"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 01:23 PM | Comments (0)

December 11, 2016
100 Days of Rejection

Entertaining and inspiring 15 minute TED talk about a fascinating experiment launched by a young entrepreneur and what he learned about how to turn rejection into opportunities.

Idea Champions
Storytelling at Work

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 05:56 PM | Comments (0)

December 05, 2016
We Were Made for These Times!

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What follows is an extraordinary call of the heart by Clarissa Pinkola Estes. Not only is it worth reading, it's worth reading aloud -- so you hear it and feel it as well as see it. Then, you get to decide who you want to share it with -- and how. This is a piece of deep, soul-inspired, primal writing that deserves to travel to every corner of the Earth.

Continue reading "We Were Made for These Times!"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 12:33 PM | Comments (0)

December 04, 2016
25 Reasons Why Brainstorming Sessions Fail in Your Company

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Whenever I ask my clients to tell me about the quality of their company's brainstorming sessions, they usually roll their eyes and grumble, noting several of the phenomena below.

Recognize any of them in your organization?

1. Lame facilitation
2. Wrong problem statement
3. Unmotivated participants
4. Hidden (or competing) agendas
5. Insufficient diversity of participants
6. Addiction to the status quo
7. Lack of clear ground rules
8. Sterile meeting space
9. No transition from "business as usual"
10. Lack of robust participation

Continue reading "25 Reasons Why Brainstorming Sessions Fail in Your Company"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 07:45 AM | Comments (5)

November 30, 2016
WANT TO LEAD A GOOD MEETING? Begin with Facilitative Presence!

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Since 1987, I have been facilitating a wide variety of high octave business meetings for just about every industry on planet earth. These meetings have been variably referred to as leadership development programs, creative thinking trainings, innovation workshops, team building off sites, brainstorming sessions, strategic planning pow wows, senior team retreats, annual conferences, and business simulations.

Along the way, as you might imagine, I've developed quite a repertoire of approaches, methods, processes, tools, techniques, and skills to help me get the job done. All of them have worked if delivered in the right way at the right time.

But when push comes to shove (as it often does), the single most effective meeting facilitation ability I've discovered is the most mysterious one of all: presence. Yes, presence, -- the ability to be totally in the moment, no matter what the collective mood, mindset, or drama is of the people in the room.

Continue reading "WANT TO LEAD A GOOD MEETING? Begin with Facilitative Presence!"

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 01:43 PM | Comments (0)

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Who Are We?

Idea Champions is a consulting and training company dedicated to awakening and nurturing the spirit of innovation. We help individuals, teams and entire organizations tap into their innate ability to create, develop and implement ideas that make a difference.

Storytelling at Work
Storytelling at Work is Mitch Ditkoff's newly published book about the power of personal storytelling in business – why it matters and what you and your organization can do to leverage the impact of storytelling in the workplace.
Top 5 Speaker
Mitch Ditkoff, the Co-Founder and President of Idea Champions, has recently been voted a top 5 speaker in the field of innovation and creativity by Speakers Platform, a leading speaker's bureau.
Workshops & Trainings
Highly engaging learning experiences that increase each participant's ability to become a creative force for positive change
Brainstorm Facilitation
High impact certification training that teaches committed change agents how to lead groundbreaking ideation sessions
Cultivating Innovation
Your "best and brightest" are the future leaders of your company, but unless they know how to foster a culture of innovation, their impact will be limited. A one-day workshop with us is all they need to begin this journey.
Our Blog Cabin
Our Heart of Innovation blog is a daily destination for movers and shakers everywhere — gleefully produced by our President, Mitch Ditkoff, voted "best innovation blogger in the world" two years running.
The Hero's Journey
Innovators are known for their ability to move forward. But sometimes, the best way to move forward is to retreat – especially when it's time to reinvent yourself. That's why Idea Champions is now offering 5-day immersive retreats in beautiful San Miguel de Allende. Reboot! Refresh! Renew!
Team Innovation
Innovation is a team sport. Brilliant ideas go nowhere unless your people are aligned, collaborative, and team-oriented. That doesn't happen automatically, however. It takes intention, clarity, selflessness, and a new way of operating.
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Idea Champions University
Webinars for online training If you enjoy our blog, you will love our newly launched webinars! Our training is now accessible online to the whole world.
Awake at the Wheel, Book about big ideas If you're looking for a powerful way to jump start innovation and get your creative juices flowing, Awake at the Wheel is for you. Written by Mitch Ditkoff, Co-Founder and President of Idea Champions.
Featured in Alltop Guy Kawasaki's Alltop "online magazine rack" has recognized Idea Champions' blog as one of the leading innovation blogs on the web. Check out The Heart of Innovation, and subscribe!
Face the Music Blues Band The world's first interactive business blues band. A great way to help your workforce go beyond complaint.

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