Smart Man Online: George Kittredge
Jane Runs Hither and Yon

Jane Spotlights Innovation

The attention being given to the term 'innovation' - as it applies to business - seems pretty belated, to Jane. By its very nature, business needs to adapt an innovative style of operation. Without innovation, business becomes stale and ordinary, so much so it risks losing its ability to attract new clients and/or customers.

Today, Jane pays tribute to innovation in preparation of our upcoming trip to Fortune magazine's new Innovation Forum conference being held at the end of the month, in NYC. We like to think that other's attention to the promotion of innovation is a result not so much of the prevalence of this term to make it into MSM and blogs, but a result of CEOs finally adapting, and adopting, the kind of creative mindset that encourages and rewards innovation in the workplace.

That's what Jane thinks of when the word 'innovation' pops up in the conversation. We think 'creative.' We think 'out of the ordinary.' We think 'focus on being remarkable (thank you, Seth Godin).'

[Please take a moment to visit the links in our righthand sidebar. These are innovative folks from all over the U.S. who have stepped up to help Yvonne aka Jane get to NY for the Innovation Forum conference. We are indebted to them all - innovative small businesses on the leading edge.]

Here are a few remarkable, innovative ideas that might spark creativity at your end, in your quest to approach marketing to women online successfully:

1. Dogs that serve as reading tutors. As noted in this USA Today article, "Kathy Brake, a principal at Washington Grove [says], "For schools to raise reading scores, children must improve in pronouncing and comprehending words." What better way to do that than to have the children read aloud to a non-judgmental audience made up of - dogs? Inspiring.

2. Our good friend and Smart Marketing to Women professional, Andrea Learned, over at her blog, has a post on the Jay Monahan Center for Gastrointestinal Health -- citing its female-friendly design and layout. As Andrea so rightly points out, "Community development, commercial environment and interior design are greatly influenced by women - both in their involvement as professionals in those fields, and perhaps moreso in the likelihood that women will be the end consumers as retail or service customers/patients, office space securers or residential owners." There is innovation there, beyond the lines and angles in the architecture of the building. Learn more at this link.Natascha_yogachandra

3. If ever we have saved the best for last, it's now. We have been anxiously awaiting the right time to write about Natascha Yogachandra and that time has finally arrived! Natascha is 11 years old, and she's already accomplished more in her young life than anyone else Jane knows. This outstanding young woman is not only talented and full of innovation, she is supported by a father and mother who define innovation in ways the rest of us can only marvel at!

Natascha is the founder of Project Book Angels "based on the belief that all humanity are the children of God; they belong to the same family, to the same original race." She and her father, Nat (a personal friend, we admit it) and her mother, Debbie, feel so strongly about reading and books and providing these remarkable tools to children in underdeveloped countries, that they are living overseas...opening libraries, passing out books, and actively doing something to combat illiteracy, worldwide.

Would that more of us were so talented, innovative, and full of charity. But, since we're locked Hope_is_life_braceletwithin our limited mindset of how to be truly innovative, Jane hopes those reading today will visit Natascha's site and buy a bracelet in support of her so innovative efforts.

There is nothing not to like about that.


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Linda D. Pratt

Dear Jane and everyone visiting this site:

I am very proud and honored to be sponsor of Yvonne's trip to the Fortune Innovation Forum. As part of the Rochester Professional Consultant's Network here in Rochester, NY, we are all very proud about Yvonne's success.

If there is ever an arena that needs "innovation" as defined by creativity and out of the ordinary, it is education. I do not think there is one person in America that does not think of the education our children are receiving.

Although my expertise is in the early childhood field, research supports that investment in early childhood education pays off later in higher graduation rates, higher standards of living, and more citizens making a profitable contribution to society*. Of course, this is in adition to children knowing how to read and write, spell and add and subtract.

The business world may seem distantly aligned with finger paints and Duplos, but it is at this age where we see the beginnings of creativity and innovation, not to mention extraordinary insights as to how the world works. Anyone who has posted art from a child on a refridgerator or kept house of popsicle sticks on the fireplace mantle appreciates the thought that went into designing such a product.

As you are walking about the Forum this week, take a look at the designs and products you see. Why would people stand in line for coffee when they could make some at home? Who would every watch a program about a funeral director? Just where did someone come up with that red bull's eye anyway? Perhaps those ideas started from someone playing with a cash register, or comforting a friend, or doodling with red crayons.

Envisioning extraordinary education for ALL of our citizens is up to us if we wish to be the most creative and innovative workforce in the world. The preschoolers of today may well be the Anne Mulcahy's, Bill Gates' and Oprah Winfrey's of tomorrow.

*Yoshikawa, H. Long-Term Effects of Early
Childhood Programs on Social Outcomes and
Delinquency. Long-Term Outcomes of Early Childhood Programs, The Future of Children, Vol. 5 • No. 3 – Winter 1995

*Anderson, L.M. et al., The Effectiveness of Early Childhood Development Programs:
A Systematic Review. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 2003;24(3S)

*Grunewald,R. and Rolnick, A. Early Childhood Development: Economic
Development with a High Public Return. The Region, December, 2003.

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