Interesting 5 via NYC

I was in New York City last week, being part of the Gamification Summit. Whilst I was there, the following five things were interesting enough for me to post… and comment on

4 Considerations for Expanding your Startup to International Markets

“1. Clearly define your business model. 2. Build and foster your community. Relocate to your new market. 4. Understand the investor community”

Miguel Valdés Faura, CEO of a startup from France makes some interesting points on Mashable.  But isn’t it kind of obvious that “you need to have an actionable business model before you expand”? That “engaging with the community” is something everyone already knows, and “getting funded before expansion” is, well, a functional necessity. Also, the suggestion that you’d move to the new market only works if you’re considering abandoning the old one.

Here are my top 4 considerations for expanding internationally. 1. Buy talent in the market you’re expanding to that knows what it is dong and has a network. 2. Buy talent you already have a relationship with so you know you can trust it. 3-4: See 1 & 2.

RapidBiz: App Development Tool for Non-Developers

“More and more companies are starting to realize that managing business processes using spreadsheets is a cumbersome and inefficient way of solving problems.”

Robert Scoble reports on a company that makes workflow software that anyone can use to make apps, developer or not.

Tools such as these are key drivers of emergence in enterprises, and blur the line between content and apps.

Why is that important? Because, just like content, an app has an audience, and the one with the biggest always wins. That’s why it’s ok if your company’s crowd makes 10 different car-park booking apps. The one that’s best will be the one that survives.

To cultivate innovation, work like an artist

Another innovator who suggests creativity and being inspired to “work like an artist” is the key secret sauce to making innovation happen.

Working like an artist is not a scalable activity. I mean, you can be a creative person and work on one thing at a time, and no doubt, you will have a success if you just work hard enough.

That’s fine, if you’re planning to limit yourself to a single project. Maybe that’s fine if you’re a startup founder, even.

But if you are resp0nsible for an innovation programme in  a large enterprise, nothing a single person will do is all that material in the overall scheme of things.

If you’re the big-enterprise innovation guy, you need to forget about creativity and artistry. Instead, you want processes and repeatability and ROI. Leave the creativity and artistry to those who don’t have to hit a number to survive.

Mass Elite

Seth Godin asks if it is right to treat customers differently. He concludes it is, but makes the following point:

“The danger is that your team will misunderstand the entire point of the exercise, using it as an opportunity to cut corners on the hoi polloi (who are merely elite customers who haven’t converted yet) at the same time they try to save money by investing less in the very people you set out to serve better in the first place.”

This rings very true. Ultimately, every competitive advantage that’s derived from differentiation in either product or service is subject to commoditization, which is the point that underlies Seth’s.

The future is not doing stuff like that. In my view, the future is building products that improve the more they’re used, which is a key theme in Sidestep and Twist, my new book (just a month or so away now!).

 Microsoft again clarifies that Windows 8 tablets won’t actually run Windows apps

 “We’ve been very clear since the very first CES demos and forward that the ARM product won’t run any x86 applications,” Sinofsky said in a meeting with financial analysts yesterday, according to a report by InformationWeek.

Now this, I really don’t get.

If you wanted to leverage your existing platform to attract existing customers to your new platform, you would not do this.

On the other hand, if you wanted to build something brand new without the baggage of the past, you’d distance yourself from the legacy completely.

The whole Windows 8 Metro thing is a symptom of something everyone who is involved with innovation sees all the time: the old guard, the ones with the most to lose by something new, water that new thing down to such a degree it loses the value it was supposed to deliver in the first place.

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