I started the Eclectic Curiosity Interviews this past September to both broaden the perspective of this blog and to learn a thing or two from some incredibly bright people with exciting stories to tell and wisdom to share. The response from participants and readers alike has been outstanding! The series will continue in the new year but in the meantime, if you haven’t already, check out any of the first seven insightful dispatches…
Jane Fulton Suri
Chief Creative Officer at IDEO
We use the term “post-disciplinary” not to diminish the role of discipline and expertise as a foundation but to communicate the idea of going beyond it, not being limited by a disciplinary stance in collaborative teamwork.… more
Jane Fulton Suri is chief creative officer at IDEO, with special emphasis on the contribution of human insight, creative practice and design thinking to client companies. She came to design from human factors psychology to pioneer the integration of social science-based approaches with design, grow a flexible community of practitioners, and evolve human-centered design methods, including empathic observation and experience prototyping, across the company’s client projects worldwide. In addition, Jane published a book last year about intuitive design titled Thoughtless Acts?.
One never knows how you’ll come to meet new people. A decade ago, when I was attending university, my father returned from a business trip with the card of a gentleman he’d sat next to on his flight. I was studying for a career in marketing and advertising and the man on the plane – one Alan Wiggan – just so happended to run the top agency in the city. Lucky me! That chance encounter opened the door for an informational interview, a sage industry advisor to consult with on class projects, a recommendation that helped me get my first full-time job after graduating, an incredibly generous mentor in business, and a really cool guy just to chat with about life.… more
Tim Westergren is an award-winning composer, an accomplished musician and a record producer with 10 years of experience in the music industry. He has recorded with independent labels, managed artists, scored feature films, produced albums, and performed extensively. His main instrument is the piano, but over the years he has played the bassoon, drums and clarinet and his musical background spans such genres as rock, blues, jazz and classical music. Tim is obsessed with helping talented emerging artists connect with the music fans most likely to appreciate their music. To that end, in 2000 he founded the Music Genome Project and, more recently, its popular online offspring Pandora.… more
In the last several years, the western Canadian city of Calgary has surged to become one of the most dynamic, fastest growing, and wealthiest young cities in North America. It’s where I attended university and worked for a couple years before moving east to Montreal, where I felt urban living and the arts were more universally embraced and supported. But much is changing back in Cowtown and part of the positive change and optimism is due to the presense of a passionate generalist – a rogue intellect – located in a modest office one block west of city hall. As President and CEO of Calgary Arts Development, Dr.… more
Russell Davies likes breakfast, so much so in fact that he wrote a book about it (eggsbaconchipsandbeans). That alone makes Russell a fascinating man with good taste but it only begins to scratch the surface. Visitors to RussellDavies.com–or any of his other eclectic interest sites, ranging from creative spaces and 10,000 bands to in defense of the ordinary and a good place for a cup of tea and a think–are witness to his keen observational eye, brilliant insight, and good humour. Davies was a planner for nine years at the elite advertising agency wieden + kennedy before joining Nike last year as its Global Planning Director.… more
The bio provided to me by the next kind participant in my humble Q&A series begins like this: “By many accounts and on many counts, Susan August is a very curious person. She is a resident of Silicon Valley, and mostly lives in her head.” To which I can only remark that she inhabits a most fascinating place indeed.
I met Susan a few years ago in, of all places, the internets; this blog in fact. She generously emailed me with some tips in response to a post I made venting some of my frustrations with Blogger at the time. We’ve kept in touch ever since and I continue to be inspired and enlightened by her.… more
I’m very pleased to kick off the Creative Generalist “eclectic curiosity” interview series with the man who literally wrote the book on intersectional thinking. Frans Johansson is an author, speaker, and entrepreneur. His recent bestselling book, The Medici Effect, was named one of the top-10 best business books of 2004 by Amazon.com, the innovation book of the year by several other organizations and has so far been translated into 13 languages. The paperback was released just a few weeks ago. In this remarkable book, Frans looks at how individuals, teams and organizations can create an explosion of groundbreaking innovations by combining ideas and concepts from different fields, cultures, and industries.… more