Mayo Surgical Innovation Team


I visited Rochester Minnesota to meet with the head of the innovation team emerging out of the surgical unit at Mayo clinic.   This is an internal initiative of the clinic separate from the Ventures group already operating with start-ups.    It is focused on leveraging the internal insights & ideas of the surgical teams and practitioners are seeing on the front lines of the business.   It can combine internal resources with the start up community to try and bring some of these ideas to life more rapidly and engage the staff in new ways.   I was able to share the models and services the university was exploring developing and the potential for synergy was evident.    While this new group was just forming I look forward to following their progress and to see how Mayo integrates the intrepreneurship with its venture teams.

Global Innovation Centers / Cisco Teleconference


I was a featured speaker at an international conference on innovation and international exchange that was hosted by Cisco Corporation at their teleconferencing office in Bloomington Minnesota.   The conference was joined by innovation representatives spanning US cities and other locations including Russia, China, Singapore, etc.    Different groups talked about the innovation initiatives they were leading in their countries and were looking for ways to integrate and collaborate around developing an international exchange of practices, innovations, and more collaborative integrations.
I was one of the speakers invited to share insights into the research and initiatives I was current leading in Minnesota.
My presentation covered the following areas of activities:
  1. Learning & practices my research was finding in the development of innovation economies around the world.
  2. How a variety of funding models needed to be integrated at different stages of the innovation lifecycle of centers to create a sustainable and more scaleable model
  3. Work I was exploring with economists around new areas of global exchange.   This is a large topic that is looking at new forms of international exchange beyond basic trade and transactions that is built to create sustainable innovation collaboration and all the talent, investment, and resources required.   It also embodies a new language around exchange to describe new business and revenue models around an innovation economy.
  4. Designing global platforms to facilitate collaboration and integration of innovation centers.  This was another broad topic spanning a range of platforms ( like digital ) to a host of others required to support the broad spectrum of exchange resources.
  5. A brief overview of international funding activities to support the build out of these shared services.
My Q&A session was very active as there was a great deal of interest and synergy points across the various attendees from other regions.  I found the event to be a fantastic opportunity for a global network that launched conversations that turned into rich an active ongoing relationships today.
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Leadership Advisory Board 2nd Quarter Meeting

CSOM Boardroom

We convened the second quarter Leadership Advisory Board that the Carlson School of Management.
This board contained around 40 corporate members from their talent development groups around leadership and executive development.  This previous session had focused on offerings around emerging leaders.   Based on the feedback on the new leadership programs for the last meeting we where able to show the changes in the emerging leaders program being offered.    This included a more robust coaching option integrated into the standard curriculum and the inclusion of more industry practitioners to make the program more relevant and valuable.   We also where able to present initial designs to a full portfolio of offerings in the leadership space and prioritize the next program for development targeted at more senior executives.  As in the last meeting,  participation from the attendees was really engaged and passionate.   It was also to see the diversity of feedback based on individual organizations approach to leadership development.   It was very informative for this peer group to see how organizations are approaching the space differently form a variety as aspects including:
–  In-house development vs. leveraging external partners
– The amount of dollars and investment made into leaders
– The diversity of size & effort put into leaders at different levels.   Do you spend more or less time/dollars into senior leaders vs. younger ones.   Do senior leaders need any support or do they need more support than ever in their careers?
– How to bring in senior leaders into an organization when they have “grown up” in other corporations models
– How to develop leaders that either come from or have to work in other international cultures
– How does support vary in terms of men or woman leaders?
– How much does your company invest in mentorship models
– How much does your company invest in peer to peer models
– How much does your company invest in external peer to peer models?
– How much does your company invest in leadership & and then developing the organizations they are leading?  ( are you leaving your employees behind?)
– etc.
Leadership is one of many topics that are top of mind for corporations and business schools.   In a world of increase speed of change and innovation talent becomes the critical resource.   If agility is a key component,  how are you building and developing your leadership to meet that challenge and how are they supported in building organizations and talent pool?

MNIT – Public Data & Crowdsourcing

dataI had an interesting meeting with the MN Director of Innovation to continue our conversation around public data.   In the meeting he shared several interesting stories about the power of crowd sourcing solutions with public data.   A large, east coast, metropolitan had made a number of its government data sources public through a reporting platform.   The goal was to see what value could be created through partnerships and crowd sourcing solutions.   The initiative created a wide variety of new and valuable insights by connecting data that was seemingly unrelated. One example was combining public tree trimming data with emergency response data.   Turned out to be direct corrections to intersections and the number of accidents.   This informed the planning process around the importance and criticality of tree trimming around high volume intersections.  Two separate government agencies,  that didn’t interact prior, are now collaborating in new ways simply by leveraging the data they both had in more collaborative ways.     There was little cost in this discovery, but leveraging the crowd’s creative energies.
This example reminded me a a wide number of similar projects I have done in corporate America.   I’ve worked with companies to identify categories of data that are better served by being made available on public APIs.   Enlightened organizations have seen huge benefits by providing APIs and cultivating data marts across multiple internal data sources.   Some of the oportunities they have been able to create include:
– Crowdsourced solutions that give new insights into their business
– New applications, both PC and mobile based that serve their market or customers
– Attract new strategic partnerships around data sharing.  This opened a variety of new business opportunities to expand the data analytics capabilities of both companies by have data beyond each partners current operational data.  It also put those companies into a new level of partnership when insights where found and they could both respond to market opportunities in a joint venture.
– By making some data public,  it provides a new data source of who and how that data is being consumed.   The insights and analytics of the data consumption and how it was being used has also been of great strategic advantage to the providing companies to proactively engage the market that is consuming it by spotting the opportunities or disruptors early in the process.
– Consumption data itself can be a new revenue business for the data leaders and aggregators.   Its an interesting model as your selling consumption data and in turn track who is consuming the consumption data to add to your data pool.  ( Recursive in nature )
– Companies that lead in their industries in data sharing also tend to gain an advantage in setting up strategic relationships and ultimately become more of the broker of data in their industries.  As the broker of data, you become the aggregator and ultimately have a larger industry view of how and who is consuming not only your data,  but all the other data sources you are aggregating.
Public data leadership is similar to a land grab.   Pro-activity is the key.   Its never too early to lead,  but for those that are followers, it will always be too late.

Expo 2023 Press Conference


I attended Expo 2023 World’s Fair press conference hosted at the offices of Greater MSP in downtown Minneapolis.    The event featured opening remarks from Marilyn Carlson and other supporting regional influencers.   Former Secretary of State Mark Ritchie spoke to the current progress his team was making in preparing for the bidding process and challenges that will be faced in securing the fair for Minnesota.  He and other team members also spoke to position various activities of marketing, fund raising, and organizational development.
The Q&A session explored questions around fair locations, costs, etc.    Some questions also probed some of the thinking about infrastructure investments required and the success and failure of other fairs.  A key issue in fair design and success revolves around making infrastructure investments that benefit the city ongoing after the fair.   Of particular interest was the conversations around theme.   Given 2015 was the World’s Fair in Milan centered on food,  it set a good president for the Minnesota fair being center on Health & Wellness.
This event was a major milestone for the Expo2023 team becoming more visible to the public and formally sharing the progress to securing the bid for 2023.
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