Welcome back to Rock Your Customers ! I hope that the summer of 2010 has been a great one for you. The changing of the seasons from summer to fall means that another annual gathering of Experience Economy Junkies is not far away. The event is simply called thinkAbout. This year, the 13th, is being held in Minneapolis, Minnesota on September 29 & 30th. thinkAbout 2010 Details
I thought I'd share some thoughts on my first thinkAbout experience as it was an important milestone in the transformation of my business. It was really the beginning of an incredible five-year journey for me. Simply stated thinkAbout was the best investment I ever made in my business. Don't hesitate to get in touch with me should you have any questions.
The Story begins after reading and studying a book called The Experience Economy-Work is Theatre and Every Business a Stage, by Joe Pine & Jim Gilmore.
In August of 2005 I decided to write an article for a local business journal on my discovery of “The Experience Economy to somehow connect the concept of experiences with out current video production offerings. It was really our initial effort to communicate our differentiation. A quote from Pine and Gilmore’s book, to be included in the article led to a website search for biographical information on the authors and to the discovery of a special learning encounter being offered by them. It was simply called tHINKABOUT. (No that’s not a typo –they use a lower case t)
thinkAbout- A Rocky Mountain High
WOW! I’ve got to go to this. My first reaction to discovering this special event called thinkAbout. I’d spent a considerable amount of time on the book’s concepts and was excited to learn more. But $2500 bucks for a seminar! I’ve attended quite a few over the years in business, technology and creative; none this expensive. A confident assertion- ok a 100% guarantee, by Strategic Horizon’s Scott Lash, that a clearer vision for my business would result, made it an easy decision. So it was off to the mountains to search, explore and hopefully discover a new vision.
It was a brisk September Morning in September of 2005. I was sitting in an outdoor amphitheatre of sorts readily anticipating the opening session of ‘thinkAbout’, two-day business conference held that year in The Rocky Mountains of Colorado. The event staged (and I do mean staged) by Strategic Horizons, Joe Pine & Jim Gilmore, is an annual gathering of 150 business professionals to learn, explore, and share ideas on the important role experiences are playing in business worldwide.
The agenda – “fostering learning, creativity, innovation and sharing all through a series of intentionally designed experiences”. thinkAbout 2005, held in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, was a transformational experience for my small video production company and for me personally. I remember thinking, what an incredibly inspiring environment The Rockies offered, to re-imagine something new for my business. International business guru Tom Peters, author of Re-Imagine, was the opening keynote speaker. THINKABOUT KEYSTONE was the beginning of a journey of learning and discovery that included exposure to exemplar businesses (people) worldwide that are redefining the work they do, and in some cases their industries. It was very different than the numerous training and learning programs I’d been exposed to during my 19 plus year corporate career in the Food Industry. My thinkAbout excursion was a milestone in changing my thinking about the business of business. It simply provoked new thinking and more importantly affirmed my long time belief that business could be different. It wasn’t about the buzz phrase we hear so often-“thinking outside the box- it was about throwing the box away! Tossing it out and starting all over! Whether you’re a small business owner or a CEO. of a multimillion-dollar global company, the odds are stacked against you if you’re not willing to embrace the new reality and need to thinkabout your enterprise from a very non-traditional paradigm. The American Business Landscape is abundant with stories of unique businesses….let’s face it……individuals…… managers and owners, of small companies and large, across multiple industries, who challenged established thinking and ingrained industry rules of competition to not only produce new incremental profits but to change Industries. It all starts with the simple act of thinking, followed by recognizing, that in most cases, incremental improvement is not going to cut it in an age of non-stop innovation. I met a number of these individuals, first at my Rocky Mountain thinkAbout, and subsequently during other excursions to learn more about The Experience Economy.”
I love Taylor and Labarre’s concept ‘Nobody is as Smart as Everybody’. One of the most personally rewarding and inspirational aspects of my journey into the world of business experiences has been the exposure to, interaction with and collaboration, with some incredibly talented and dedicated people. It all started at thinkAbout. They came from all types, sizes, and kinds of businesses and industries. Most of them were from outside my own little worlds of video production and Saratoga Springs, New York. Most inspirational to me is the fact that though they were all different, they all shared a common bond being a member of a “Tribe” with a passion to re-imagine this thing we call work, and take a leadership role in transforming the business world. (Yea it needs it!)
So if you would like to meet and collaborate with some incredibly creative and talented business professionals do thinkabout -thinkAbout Minneapolis. Join me at thinkAbout 2010.
Best to you & REMEMBER to Rock Your Customers !