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Posts by Deborah Mills-Scofield

Deb Mills-Scofield has her own consultancy helping organizations create and implement highly actionable, adaptable, measurable, and profitable innovation-based strategic plans. Deb also is a Partner at Glengary LLC, an early-stage Venture Capital firm in Cleveland, Ohio. Deb has 20+ years of experience in strategic planning, execution and innovation with manufacturing, service and high-technology companies from large global companies to early-stage. She has also been involved in several carve-outs and start-ups, including her own. Find deb on twitter@dscofield or on her website.
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The fallacy and hubris of “market attractiveness”

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How many times have you heard or even said, “Is that market attractive to us”? We look at the markets we’re in, the markets our competitors are in, maybe even some that are new and wonder if they are/could be good for our business. We may even think of creating or segmenting in a new » Read More

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Assertions & Assessments: What Comes After Your “Ass…”?

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We all know language is key to leadership.  The subtleties, nuances, intonations, and gestures have profound effects on leaders’ credibility and on organizations’ success.  Yet, while we think about the customers of our products and services, many of us don’t think as much about the ‘hearers’ (customers) of our words when it’s our own people. » Read More When » Read More

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I’m Standing Up, Not Leaning!

Leaning Tower of Pisa

I don’t lean in, lean out, lean sideways, lean back…I stand up straight.  As a kid, my parents kept telling me to stand up straight and strong.  It created an aura of confidence, self-assurance, and supposedly, it was better for your back.  In fact, we now know that standing strong can actually change your mood and confidence. Perhaps » Read More

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The efficient ineffectiveness of control

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“When we don’t give our people the space and freedom to take calculated risks, learn, apply, and iterate, we are risk our future.  While there is a risk to improvising and spontaneity, there is a greater, more insidious risk to control.” When I wrote a version of this in a recent Harvard Business Review post, it » Read More

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Thank You For Your Service!

NATO Air Command Team

This is one of most honored posts I’ve ever ever hosted.  Lt. Col. Matthew Fritz is Director, Commander’s ActionGroup of NATO’s Air Training Command in Afghanistan.  Training a newly formed Afghan Air Force is the epitome in complex continual change management.  Matt has become a very dear friend, thanks to Angela Maiers, and fellow blogger at Switch & Shift.  I » Read More

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The Slippery Slope of Not Asking Why

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I’d like to think I’m good at challenging the status quo.  To get regular reality checks, I spend time with college kids creating for-profit and not-for-profit businesses aimed at solving wicked problems.  They truly challenge the status quo and it is, fortunately, invigoratingly contagious. Sometimes (most of the time?), the status quo is so deeply engrained » Read More

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The Art of Science

Nick Mayer blue lobster

I met Nick Mayer when ordering a gorgeous Blue Lobster print of his.  I have this thing about Blue Lobsters, seeing them in Maine and as a metaphor for innovation in that this rare phenotype results from serendipity and random collisions of genes. Nick’s art is an amazing and beautiful integration of art and biology in watercolor.  Here is Nick’s powerful story of how Science » Read More

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Result of a #RCUS? Libyian & California Kids Sharing Art

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Have you just started grinning when reading something? This post by Tomas Quinonez-Riegos will do just that! While being the international program director for iTeach, using video to teach English to kids all over the world (e.g., Cambodia, Panama, etc.) and spending his first semester junior year in Japan, Tomas has started yet another new venture, which he shares with » Read More

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What If…?

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For those of you that know me, you know I ask Why a lot (annoyingly so at times!).  So that’s why (ha!) at BIF9, I loved what Matt Murrie is doing with getting “What If…?” out there – boldly!  We all need to ask this more.  So the next time you find yourself starting to say “no,” try saying “What » Read More

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Integrating Design Theory & the Scientific Process

Hanna McPhee

If you can’t find what you’re looking for, just create it! Don’t let the world pigeon-hole you into linear paths…make your own. That’s what Hanna McPhee did. She is an extraordinary kid and typical of the ones I get to hang out with. Hanna (Brown ’14) created an independent concentration, Biologically Inspired Design and is working on her thesis. She » Read More

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