Category Archive: Innovation

Ideas Wanted – a graphic about organizational improvement


I am in a new LinkedIn group and the question came up about a simple abstract about a long article that I posted up to Pulse about government employees and motivation. You can… Continue reading

Happy Thanksgiving – a poem about US in the workplace


I thought you might like this poem using my US / THEM theme and a focus on change and improvement. By clicking on this image, you will go to my slideshare site where… Continue reading

Happy Thanksgiving Haiku – on people and workplace improvement


Here is a Thankgiving Haiku on sustaining workplace communications and success and about teamwork and team innovation. I hope you like it. Clicking on the image will take you to a whole big… Continue reading

Learning and Change


Learning. You have a choice and you cannot simply depend on others to control your destiny or your progress forward. Consider: Ya think? You can always vote with your feet if they simply… Continue reading

People who are attacked by management WILL defend themselves


We talk about teamwork but we often structure our workplaces so that there are winners and losers. We set up compensation and appraisal systems supposedly to “reward good performance.” But often, only a… Continue reading

Reflection, Innovation and Engagement


We tend to make understanding the workplace and people a really difficult and complex endeavor. Sure, there are lots of differences and we can cull out themes of leadership and innovation and creativity… Continue reading

Dr. Seuss-style Poem on Engagement and Motivation


There are about 5 different threads that got me to the point of posting this. But the end result of the refocused energy was actually pretty good, I think: Here is the Dr.… Continue reading

Simple Thought on Team Perspective


Teams are powerful tools for implementing changes and improving workplace performance. Teams also impact leadership and can work for you or against you, depending on the organizational culture. Sometimes, it pays to simply… Continue reading

The Future: More Square Wheels®


I was thinking about the future a while ago and realized that, for many, it arrived last year or even many years ago, in regards to how they deal with change. In picture… Continue reading

Poem on Celebrating Workplace Improvement


In updating a blog post on my other blog, I redid this Square Wheels Poster to reflect some thinking on what constitutes workplace improvement. Basically, we have Engagement Participative Involvement Peer Support The… Continue reading

Managing and Leading Change


For the past 20 years, I have been playing with the theme of managing and leading change. One reality is that you cannot push change onto someone else. In that way, it is… Continue reading

Persistence – Not Enough by Itself


My friend Kevin Eikenberry tweeted today that, “Persistence matters for matters of personal achievement and leadership.” Since I had just posted a picture blog of Perfectionism in this poems and quips blog, I… Continue reading

Perfectionism: Some Square Wheels Thinking


An acquaintance shared that she will be presenting on TV about “perfectionism.” It is actually something I know very little about, even though a lot of people seem to think that I am… Continue reading

Innovation – How does it get started?


I am a big believer in continuous continuous improvement and workplace innovation driven by people who have their hands on the wagon and know what is not working smoothly. Innovation does not always… Continue reading

Play: Never The Same Old Ideas


Some 25 years ago, Randy Ranslaben gave me a name for one of the original line-art Square Wheels illustrations. He called it, “Wheel Time Twaining” and it looks like this: The idea was… Continue reading

Creating Support for Change


We often find that change is resisted. I’ve written extensively on this in my regular blog posts, like this one on “The Reality of Change, Innovation and Employee Engagement,” and this one on… Continue reading

Business Haiku on Innovation


This is apparently National Poetry Month, so I pressed up this old line-art Square Wheels illustration with its accompanying haiku: I want to set this up with the LEGO, but I thought to… Continue reading

Zen Koan on Workplace Engagement and Leadership


I just thought that this might anchor to some thoughts about behavioral alternatives and leadership and engagement and some workplace issues like motivation and innovation. Ya think? (grin) My belief and my experience… Continue reading

Square Wheels Haiku on The Passion for Change


The people at the back of the wagon might seem resistant to any imposed changes that management — the wagon pullers — might suggest. But plenty of research has found a large difference… Continue reading

A Square Wheels Working Reality and the ending “dous”


When I came across the interesting thing about English words and the –dous ending, I immediately thought of the illustration of how things really work in so many organizations. Thought you might like… Continue reading

Engagement and Motivation – a Management Competency Checklist


After posting up a blog about the irony of actually celebrating a single day called National Employee Appreciation Day — think about that or check out my blog post — I was thinking… Continue reading

Self-Reflection and Personal Growth


In Gary Loper’s newsletter today, he talked briefly about “The Road to Self-Discovery” and since I have been playing with my Square Wheels images and themes a lot the past two days, since… Continue reading

Mistakes and Innovation – Impact of Learning


Recent talk in a LinkedIn Leadership Group got me thinking about how we deal with mistakes in the workplace. Some managers do it well and some do it badly, generating what the literature… Continue reading

The REALITY of Innovation and Improvement


My belief is that innovation and improvement are incremental processes that generally occur in small, sometimes continuous steps forward. There may be occasional mistakes or failures but teams of people can often implement… Continue reading

The Play is The Thing!


I was in the middle of a response in one of my LinkedIn forums and thought to quickly put this together and up. We sometimes take work so deadly seriously, and we get… Continue reading

Square Wheels Images out of LEGO


My “old” version of the new LEGO illustrations looks like this: and my son pointed out to me that this is NOT all “official LEGO pieces” like the smooth wheel in the middle… Continue reading

The Eye sees only what the mind is prepared to comprehend


I saw Henri Bergson’s famous quote in an article on thinking and visioning and thought to illustrate the idea. Originally, he was thinking of this as a metaphor for thinking, but we know… Continue reading

Continuous Continuous Improvement – Reality


In a LinkedIn thread, the issue of organizational improvement was raised and I commented about the reality that continuous improvement was something that many managers strive to achieve, once! Too many people simply… Continue reading

Innovation, Creativity and People


We like to think of ourselves as rational human beings, making good sense of everything that happens in our environment. The reality is that we are creatures bounded by our imagination and self-deceptions,… Continue reading

Nothing Made Sense – A LEGO Square Wheels Image


A similar quote to this turned up when I was reading Closing Time by Joseph Heller, the author of Catch 22. The latter is one of my favorite books of all time, so… Continue reading

Destiny, Teamwork, and Making Sense of Things


I was thinking about teamwork and how it tends to integrate with company culture while I was looking at some old powerpoint slides of quotes. I thought to polish up this one and… Continue reading

We LAUGH at Square Wheels. Levitation!


Why not simply laugh at the antics of those people pushing and pulling a wagon on Square Wheels? It is simply so silly! What do you think they do things that way? If… Continue reading

Dr. Seuss might say this about Leadership


I thought this might make a good one-liner on the theme of leading people and improving motivation. Reframe the “care” word to anchor it to the issues of people and performance. Caring is… Continue reading

A Quote on Acting, Dreaming, Planning, and Believing


This quote by Anatole France was shared on Twitter, so I thought to illustrate it with my Square Wheels One LEGO approach to how things really work. Your thoughts? It reminds me of… Continue reading

Making Improvements in how things work


We tend to approach the workplace as a highly complicated interrelationship of hundreds of twisted systems, policies, procedures and programs. Just the thought of “how to motivate people” will make some managers cringe… Continue reading

Thinking: Beliefs versus Actual Creativity


Most of us are creative and innovative when it comes to solving problems, we really are. But it would also appear that most of us go through a phase where we lose that… Continue reading

What Leaders DO – expressed in Square Wheels and LEGO


We often discuss themes of leadership, and there are just so many complicated models and detailed books that go after the explanation of what the best leaders do differently than the average ones… Continue reading

The Boss, Thinking and Missing; A Dr. Seuss style poem


Thought you might like this little glimpse of organizational reality, but here is my LEGO version of how things really work in most organizations along with a Dr. Seuss-style poem of the commonplace… Continue reading

Dr. Seuss-Style Thanksgiving Poem on Thinking and Being Great


Well, when one gets into the grove of messing around with poems, one actually starts messing around with poems. I’ve always liked that Dr. Seuss style of saying things so there is a… Continue reading

A Poem on Thanksgiving Communications and Success


All of us can look back over the year and see successes and we can all look forward to see opportunities to work together and generate new and improved results. Innovation often takes… Continue reading

Business Haiku – Innovation through Conversation


Thought that this was a cute little ditty to spin up: Hope that all things go well. More of these to come. For the FUN of It! Dr. Scott Simmerman is a designer of… Continue reading

Mechanistic Operations: What’s wrong with THAT picture?


I am re-reading Gareth Morgan’s book on Images of Organizations (1986) and some of his writings on the mechanistic approaches to organizational design got me to think about how things work using my… Continue reading

Motivation, Peer Support and Engagement – A LEGO Poster


My son Jeff had a great idea and simply illustrated it. He was reading one of my earlier blog posts on the workplace and group involvement and gave me the punchline that appears… Continue reading

Progress: The Illusion of it


Someone pinned one of my blog posts that had a few optical illusions embedded in it. You can see that here: So, having the master powerpoint file for my Posters open, I thought… Continue reading

Working and The Living Dead


Will work actually make you a Zombie or is that simply your choice for how you do things? Will you just stumble along unmotivated and uncaring about the world around you or will… Continue reading

Innovation: Continuous Continuous Improvement with LEGO and Square Wheels


Someone made a LinkedIn comment about innovation and improvement and I popped in a quip that I thought would be a good poster, so here we go:   Continuous continuous improvement is a… Continue reading

Peter Drucker Quote and a LEGO Square Wheels post on Management


I saw this in my image files and realize I had not popped it into anything so, here we go. It was going to appear in a longer blog on thinking about management… Continue reading

Yes, you CAN be a more engaging leader of teams


You do NOT need to be a professional facilitator of teams in order to generate more intrinsic motivation and engagement. All you need to do is involve people in aligning to the vision… Continue reading

Decision Making with Devil’s Advocate


Challenging decisions and assumptions is a critically important role that is often neglected, given organizational cultures like GM where the “GM Nod” is simply the way of escaping any link to accountability or… Continue reading

Behaving Engaging – a LEGO Square Wheels Poster


A discussion group in LinkedIn had a post today about “GO” being the first thing that someone should do as a new manager. DO SOMETHING seemed to be the main thrust. I wrote… Continue reading

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