How Evernote Innovates Like a Nuclear Submarine

Evernote was hatched to wild success.

With millions of users, other startup CEOs might have cashed their chips and moved to the next big thing. However, Evernote’s Phil Libin doesn’t have an exit strategy. Rather, his goal for Evernote is to be a 100 Year Company, that is, “an innovative company that people love that lasts for a century.”

Early on, Evernote graduated from startup mode, turning its attention to establishing management teams by drawing on talent throughout the organization.

Borrowing from management techniques practiced on nuclear submarines, Evernote adopted what Libin calls,

How to Motivate for Innovation

Everyone is an MVP in innovation culture. Because innovation is a practice done by people, and each team member counts. Treating team members as MVPs implies trust, respect, and the freedom to succeed.

Here is an easy way to remember what it means to be an Innovation MVP:

  • M is for Mantra. Each team member should know why he or she is here, in terms of value for the customer.
  • V is for Values. Each team member should share the same values in the quest to fulfill the mantra.
  • P is for Principles. Each team member should know what he or she is free to do, without permission, in order to fulfill

Alamo Drafthouse Cinema Innovates on Christmas Day

The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema breaks ranks with major national chains to screen the controversial film "The Interview." That's no surprise. Innovation is normal at the Alamo Drafthouse.

Founded in Austin by Tim and Kerry League, Alamo Drafthouse is a rapidly growing alt-cinema chain that combines good food and drink with movies that matter.

Tim League is no stranger to controversy. He already banned Madonna for texting during the screening of 12 Years a Slave. League expects moviegoers to have fun, but also to be respectful and behave.

Why Hipsters are the Future of Innovation

Tis the season when people gather together to focus on what’s really important – trends! According to the Ford Motor Company, that means watching Generation Z.

Ford can teach us a few things about the rewards of trend watching, and the hazards of ignoring them. Henry Ford almost sunk the company by ignoring trends and maintaining the status quo. Ironically, the Edsel, a name synonymous with failure, was meticulously designed for success. By paying attention to trends, Ford was able to understand the changing market and transform the failure of the Edsel into the victory of the Mustang.



What Innovative Leaders are Like

Although innovation isn’t the product of command and control leadership, nevertheless, innovation begins at the top. Indeed, leadership is the first component of the innovative organization.

It’s been said that innovators possess a certain DNA. That term isn’t helpful, because innovation is a practice, and it can be learned by a wide variety of people. Therefore, it is better to describe innovative leaders in terms of traits, because traits describe practices.

In a recent article for Forbes Magazine entitled, “What Makes Leaders Innovative? New Study Identifies The 10 Keys,” Jack Zenger