The Jonquil Ridge Innovation Framework
A few years ago, I was on the treadmill at a random chain hotel in Laredo, Texas. It was city #2 in a whirlwind research trip that had us crisscrossing the country and spending time with physicians and nurses reviewing a remote patient management system prototype we’d just spent six months and a couple of hundred thousand dollars developing. I liked our prototype well enough and there was certainly value in the project, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that it had taken too long and was way too expensive. Didn’t our internal team already know a lot of these things? Why weren’t we making better use of that internal subject matter expertise?
Better, Faster, Smarter
As I switched to the elliptical, my favorite podcaster was interviewing a guy named Jake Knapp from Google Ventures in California. He was confessing how impatient he was sometimes, and how after his son was born and he was less and less inclined to be working 24-7, he started second-guessing how much time it was taking his teams to get to “the good stuff.” Weren’t there faster ways to get great results?
Jake and his colleagues had started experimenting with new processes to help their clients develop those great ideas faster and smarter. He’d just written a book — Sprint: How To Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas In Just Five Days, which would go on to become a New York Times bestseller — with a rapid prototyping process for getting from a blank sheet of paper on Monday morning to a tested prototype by Friday afternoon. I was instantly mesmerized. I ordered the book off Amazon before I left the gym.
I devoured the book, and the Google Sprint process has had a big influence on me in recent years. I’ve battle-tested it for my industry and tried many different versions of it — longer, shorter, hardware, software, apps, portfolio strategies, positioning, and messaging, virtual, in-person — and anything else I could get someone to let me do! The book itself is fabulous but almost comical in how specific the authors are in dictating specifics including times, snacks, and supplies. I love the high level ideas but have found the detailed cookbook too restrictive for my needs.
Success! And More Iteration
The base ideas in that process have garnered amazing results, in my experience:
- Clarify the target audience
- Clarify the needs
- Solve the challenge individually
- Combine the best ideas
- Develop the best two ideas further in small groups
- Test them with real customers before the end of the workshop
It works. And it resonates with me so deeply because the core ideas come from decades of innovation and design thinking process improvements that I first learned as a dot-commer back in the last millennium. The lessons have been reinforced time and time again through my projects and experience over the years.
Making It My Own
The Jonquil Ridge Innovation Framework is the result of 25+ years of adventures in my own impatience. I’ve tried, tested, learned, and experimented with ways to help my teams work better, faster, and smarter throughout my career. I’ve read everything I can get my hands on. I’ve taken courses. As I’ve worked in different parts of business and marketing, I’ve used Montessori learning-through-doing to lead me to so many fabulous thinkers and structured thinking frameworks.
My key influencers –- besides Jack Knapp and the Google Venture Design Sprint process –- include:
- Dan Sullivan from The Strategic Coach
- Strategyn’s Jobs to Be Done framework
- The Simplex Creativity Process from Min Basadur and Basadur Applied Innovation
- Medtronic’s Patient Access Acceleration framework
- Design thinking training from Scient’s Workshop One and Ideo
- Market research and analysis training and experiential learning from Fusion Hill, in2ition, Burke, Bain, and a wide variety of other fantastic research partners.
The Jonquil Ridge Project Framework in its current embodiment is, however, my own creation. It incorporates the best practices from all that learning, customized for your unique situation.
I’m ready for juicy new challenges. What can I help you accelerate? Schedule a time to chat now!
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