“Hey, where have you been? Why aren’t you posting as much?”

OK. So it’s been a while since I wrote anything for Open for Ideas. May 19th to be precise. That’s 111 days. So have I given up and become a lazy bugger? I’ll let you be the judge of that after I tell you what I’ve been up to.

Have I given up and become a lazy bugger?

Open for Ideas has always been a passion project. I’ve never made any money out of it. The money I earn elsewhere – often with public speaking – gives me the freedom and time to dedicate to this site. And recently I’ve just not had that freedom to give the site the time it takes to do regular updates.

There are a few reasons for that.

Speaking went silent

The first thing to tell you is that the world of public speaking changed quite dramatically for me over the last year. The booking hotline stopped being as hot as it once was. And many of my pencilled engagements were erased rather than written-over in ink.

That means one of two things:

  1. People all over the world have suddenly realised at the same time that I’m a dreadful speaker
  2. There’s some other reason outside my control

Having had conversations with other speakers, I’m coming to the conclusion that it’s the latter point. And there appears to be some correlation to Brexit and Trump. I’m hoping it settles down soon and businesses get their confidence back. This means I’ve had to focus my energy on earning money in other ways. Doing ‘real’ work, I guess. And that’s given me less time to dedicate to Open for Ideas.

I’m happy to say that things appear to be picking up slightly. I’ve got some great gigs in the diary. The rest of the year involves speaking gigs in Germany, Spain, Mexico, Macedonia and Slovenia. And London, of course. But that’s where I live, so it doesn’t sound as glamorous!

I finished writing a book

For the last year and a bit, I’ve been working on a book with my friend (and innovation guru) Soon Yu. It’s called Iconic Advantage and it will be distributed by Simon & Schuster early next year.

It’s not the typical echo-chamber ‘disruptive’ claptrap

The book is an alternative take on innovation. It’s not the typical echo-chamber ‘disruptive’ claptrap. Instead, we look at how to use innovation as part of sustained business growth and how to develop your products so they are the first ones to spring to mind for your audience.

(Sales alert!: We’re offering workshops and consulting for businesses who are interested in becoming (or remaining) a market leader.)

We submitted the manuscript a few weeks ago and we were in hectic writing mode for a number of weeks before that. Writing a book is a lot of work. Seriously. Which makes the next point all the more surprising.

I’ve started writing another book

Yup. I’m a glutton for punishment. I’m in the research and early writing stages of a book that’s currently called Not Normal. It offers new thinking on creativity, how to come up with better ideas and how to encourage more effective thinking in business.

The proposal is out with publishers at the moment and I hope to be able to share some exciting news on that soon. I’ll also be writing about some of the thinking right here in the very near future.

I’ve launched a business

This is the biggest news of all. I’ve started a business that helps people solve problems more effectively.

I developed an alternative to brainstorming

For the last few years, I’ve worked with organisations all over the world to help them come up with better ideas. The one thing I’ve noticed is that when they need ideas, they tend to think ‘brainstorm’. And – as we’ve covered a number of times on this site – brainstorms are an ineffective waste of time. So I developed an alternative to brainstorming that gets you to an effective solution more effectively.

I launched it as RADCAT a couple of months ago. But I’m just about to change its name to RIGHT Thinking. I’ll be telling you more about why I’m doing that in the next few days.

I learned to make my own gin

This has got nothing to do with my lack of activity over the last few months. But it’s great fun. I’ve now got jam jars full of experimental concoctions cluttering my drinks cabinet. I recommend giving it a go if you’re partial to a G&T.

I’ve got some more articles coming very soon. Some from me and some from other brilliant contributors.

Stay tuned!

Dave

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“Hey, where have you been? Why aren’t you posting as much?” OK. So it’s been a while since I wrote anything for Open for Ideas. May 19th to be precise. That’s 111 days. So have I given up and become a lazy bugger? I’ll let you be the judge of...
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Dave Birss
Founder and Editor at OpenForIdeas.org
Dave is obsessed with creativity. He's been a musician, illustrator, stand-up comedian, poet, radio DJ, television presenter and advertising creative director. He also wrote A User Guide to the Creative Mind.
Now he runs Open for Ideas and helps individuals and companies become more creative.
You can find him speaking at conferences all over the world. And sharing his thinking in boardrooms, universities and dimly-lit pubs.