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Convenience Store Decisions gave me a call, and wanted to speak about some of the trends impacting the industry.

The intervivew was a piece of cake — I do a lot of keynotes in the retail space. And just last year, a leader in “forecourt marketing” (which is industry speak for c-store marketing…), featured me as the keynote speaker at their Digital Forecourt Marketing Summit

 “It won’t be too long before I am able to fill up my car while my iPhone is communicating with the c-store,” he said. “By the time I walk into the store an LCD TV panel up on the wall is going to recognize me and greet me with a customized commercial.”

Here’s the extract of my observations from the article. (Small error in the article though – I’m not based in Dallas, but Toronto!)

Shift Continue Reading

It’s always a thrill when you come away from a keynote with fabulous feedback. So it was with my keynote for KOA – Kampgrounds of America — in Orlando in November!

I had an awesome stage, morning slot, and was primed for a great talk. I had done a *lot* of research on camping and outdoor hospitality trends, and was ready to pump up the crowd with a message around growth, change and branding.


The feedback has Continue Reading

I spend a lot of time speaking to global financial organizations —some of the world’s largest institutions — helping them understand what they need to do from an innovation perspective to stay ahead offast paced change.

These talks are often aimed at the idea of “how do we need to transition our advisory services — as financial planners,investment advisors, wealth managers — to keep up with fast paced change?” No where is that question more important than when thinking about the impact of technology and social networks on investing. Think about the change that the investment industry faces. We are witnessing the early stages of a massive transition of wealth from one generation to another. The numbers are staggering: we’ll see $12 to $18 trillion in intergenerational wealth transfer In the next12 years (US GDP is $12 trillion) in North America; and by 2053, some $130 trillion will have moved from one generation to another.

When it comes to financial services, adopt change as a mantra and prepare yourself to reach, support and interact with Gen-Connect in new and different ways.

That’s a lot of money sloshing around — and much of it is going to a new, tech-savvy financial consumer.

This next generation — I call them Gen-Connect — continue to aggressively integrate technology into their lives; they’re busy researching health care, insurance, retirement planning and investment advice online, on Facebook and through other social channels.

So what do you do? Adopt change as a mantra and prepare yourself to reach, support and interact with Gen-Connect in new and different ways.

Here’s a list of innovation strategies I provided in a recent keynote for a major global financial institution

1. Focus on growth

With so much volatility in the financial sector, it’s all too easy to take your eye off of the “opportunity ball.”

Yet there are huge opportunities that surround us ; probably the biggest is that we are going to witness a massive intergenerational transfer of wealth from the baby boomer generation to their uber-wiredGen-Connect children. In every area of the world this is going to involve a requirement for a lot of financial advice. As I noted in my remarks for a recent keynote to a group of senior Continue Reading

Two days, 215km (145 miles), pounding rain and sweltering heat - but I did it -- my bike and I at the base of Niagara Falls! There is still time to make a donation to this important fundraising cause!

I just successfully finished the 2012 200KM Ride to Conquer Cancer, from Toronto to Niagara Falls. It turned out to be a 109K first day, and 106k on the second day. (For my American friends, that’s about 145 miles … two wheels, two legs, and lots of enthusiasm!)

Yesterday over 4,800 people rode in this groundbreaking fundraiser – through buckets of rain. The first leg took me an unimpressive 5 hours. But today started at 7am, with sweltering heat — but I managed Continue Reading

The Canadian Society of Association Executives “Association Magazine” has just released their latest edition, which included my article with the title above.

[caption id=”attachment_10443″ align=”alignright” width=”340″ caption=”"We will see massive business model disruption as new, faster, more nimble competitors Continue Reading

This kid is soon be the next lawyer in your legal practice – or the lawyer you hire to support your legal issues. Are you ready to deal with him? He’s wired, uber-connected, collaborative, fast, and is unlike any lawyer you have ever known!

I’ve been remiss in blogging – 20+ keynotes since January, so I’ve been on the road. I’ve got lots to report on what I’ve been focused on in a huge range of different industries.

Back at the start of this travel odyssey, I found myself in Palm Springs, California, as the opening speaker for the 2012 California Community Associations Institute annual conference. In the room were several hundred lawyers and legal professionals supporting condominium and other community developments.

My focus? The key trends that would impact their role, both as lawyers and as individuals involved with complex real estate, construction and building design issues. So I did Continue Reading

I was recently the keynote speaker at two major corporate events, both of which really have to seem a key theme at the heart of the “big issues” that organizations are faced with — and that is, we are in a period of time in which the very concept of ‘cash’ is being fundamentally changed, due to the impact of mobile technology.

The first event was for Visa’s 2012 Prepaid Forum in Phoenix — at which, in my keynote, I made the observation that “if you think about it, we’ve only redefined cash once in our history — when credit cards were introduced. We’re about to do it a second time as smartphones become the new credit Continue Reading

I often wonder if the discussion about health care in many parts of the Western world has come off the rails – with the result that many opportunities for real innovation are not being pursued.

That’s the focus of quite a number of keynotes I’ll be giving in the next few weeks, including for the American Association of Preferred Provider Organizations annual conference in Jacksonville, the 2012 National Pharmacy Forum in Tampa for the Healthcare Supply Chain Association, and a private leadership event for the Mercy healthcare group based in St. Louis.

One of my key messages is that it’s time for bold thinking, big actions, and new ideas in the world of healthcare — and that can only be accomplished if people change the conversation.

What’s the problem? I think that many in the system are stuck in Continue Reading

I do a tremendous number of keynotes in the agricultural sector — from groups such as the Texas Cattlemen’s Association to the Mid-America Crop Protection Association to the US Farm Credit Co-op. As I note on my agriculture trends page, I “spent so much time customizing the presentation for one agricultural conference that at the conclusion, one fellow came up and asked him how long I had been a farmer!

With that in mind, I just got off the phone from a planning conversation for an upcoming agricultural keynote for the Grain Farmers of Ontario annual conference occurring this March.

I was speaking about generational turnover on the farm, the rapid emergence of new agricultural methodologies, and the impact of a significant acceleration in the science of agriculture.

Which brought me to mention an article I wrote way back in 2004, “I found the future of manure!” for Profit Magazine. Though a bit dated, it still helps to put in perspective some very critical and important trends — no matter what line of business you happen to be in.

What led to the article was that during my research, I discovered that a new career had emerged in this sector – professional manure managers. Heck, they even have their own magazine, Manure Managerhttp://www.manuremanager.com/

Can you apply the Continue Reading

A few years ago, right around the approach of the New Year, I wrote a blog post that I called ‘10 Great Words.”

Since that time, this inspirational post has become one of the most heavily tracked pages on my Web site; it also happens to provide the structure for the closing of most of my keynotes on stage.

In a few other years, I’ve updated the concept with other lists of inspirational words, and the meaning behind them. It’s always been a good way for me to clarify to my readers, and to my audiences while on stage, what they should be thinking about if they truly want to embrace the future and be an innovator.

With that in mind, I’ve been thinking about the words that might inspire people as they go forward into 2012. I’ve obsessed over this for quite some weeks now. I just haven’t been able to hit the right note.

And then while at the gym yesterday, and right Continue Reading