The Innovation Ecosystem: changing perspectives, one podcast at a time

Join us, as we interview remarkable and thought-provoking guests about innovation, leadership and culture in the world of business. We do this by exposing you to multiple perspectives from the arenas of business, academia, science and sports. We bring you key insights and proven tools you can use straight away to enrich your ecosystem so you are better able to respond to change. Full show notes available at
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The Innovation Ecosystem: changing perspectives, one podcast at a time



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Now displaying: May, 2016
May 31, 2016

Colin Melvin is the Global Head of Stewardship for Hermes Investment Management as well as the Founder and Chairman of Hermes Equity Ownership Services. It is Colin's mission to innovate and create successful stewardship for large institutional investors, enabling them to be active engaged owners of the companies in which they invest. Colin describes why there's such a huge disconnect in this industry and what he and his team do to help change that.

  • 01:00 - Who is Colin Melvin?
  • 05:45 - Why are investment/pension funds shifting?
  • 09:45 - The proper function of the financial system should be the allocation of capital, but that's not happening.
  • 12:00 - We currently have a short-term relationship between the investor and the company.
  • 13:55 - Adopting what the UN has done for ethical business practices, Colin and his company are focusing on responsible business principles for investment firms.
  • 16:35 - What challenges has Colin faced while implementing these new changes?
  • 20:25 - Colin shares an example of their global reach.
  • 23:35 - Colin explains his role at Hermes.
  • 27:00 - It has taken Colin and his team 11 years to get to where they are today.
  • 27:50 - Colin discusses the concept of 'The Universal Owner'.
  • 29:45 - Is the government getting involved with this process?
  • 32:00 - Colin believes there have been some political shifts based on the investment industry shifting.
  • 35:15 - What if we valued companies differently? In a more dynamic way? Colin explains further.
  • 36:45 - What skills has Colin used that have lead to his success?
  • 38:45 - Does Colin have any daily rituals?
  • 39:45 - What advice would Colin give his 25-year-old self? Don't be afraid.


May 24, 2016

David Allen is widely recognized as the world's leading expert on personal and organizational productivity. He is the author of Getting Things Done and has shown millions of people how to transform their overwhelming lives into a relaxed and more productive one. Listen to David's popular methodology and how it has helped successful leaders all over the world.

  • 03:15 - What is the 'Getting Things Done' approach David uses?
  • 04:45 - How did you stumble upon this methodology?
  • 06:45 - How does Getting Things Done help with innovation?
  • 08:45 - Nobody went out to be innovative, they just went out to solve problems.
  • 09:30 - What's a typical day look like for a successful tech company using David's system?
  • 11:25 - You need to step back and look at all of the hats you're wearing.
  • 14:00 - Surprisingly, people who are attracted to David's work are people who need it the least.
  • 15:15 - Most of the stress you have is due to breaking agreements with yourself.
  • 15:35 - Getting Things Done is not about getting things done. It's about being engaged with every single moment in your life.
  • 17:45 - The first step is to get everything out of your head and on a piece of paper.
  • 18:55 - Getting Things Done is timeless.
  • 25:15 - David talks the evolution of his business model.
  • 29:55 - Reflection is critical to the decision making process.
  • 32:25 - Keeping stuff in your head is the wrong place to be keeping stuff.
  • 35:45 - What are David's morning rituals?
  • 39:05 - What has David changed his mind about recently?
  • 41:35 - What advice does David have for his 25-year-old self?


May 17, 2016

Shane O'Mara is Principal Investigator and Professor of Experimental Brain Research at Trinity College Dublin, and is currently Director of the Trinity College Institute of Neuroscience. He is the author of the book Why Torture Doesn't Work and discusses some of the neurological effects that stress can have on the human body. Listen in for more great insights from Shane.

  • 04:00 - How necessary is it for your team to understand how the brain works?
  • 07:55 - How does long-term stress effect the human body and the brain?
  • 11:25 - It eventually backfires on organizations who intentionally build high-pressure environments for their employees.
  • 16:15 - If you don't have to solve a problem today, then don't. Think about the problem extensively, even sleep on it.
  • 22:00 - Shane shares an example of why Darwin delayed writing Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection for so long.
  • 24:25 - The part of the brain we use to judge people is the same part we use to judge commercial brands.
  • 29:00 - Shane talks about Google's hiring process.
  • 32:40 - How much do we really understand about the brain?
  • 35:40 - The brain changes by our experiences, by our attitudes, and even by how we talk to ourselves.
  • 36:30 - What's Shane's morning routine?
  • 39:10 - Shane likes to write at night because there are few distractions around.
  • 40:10 - To be chronically sleep deprived is extremely bad for you. Shane explains further.
  • 45:45 - What advice would Shane give to his 25-year-old self?


May 10, 2016

Whitney Johnson is the author of Disrupt Yourself and a contributor to the Harvard Business Review. Whitney is best known for her work on driving corporate innovation through personal disruption. She discusses the four things that help you know whether you're on the right or wrong S curve and shares examples of how to disrupt a constraint in a company environment. Tune in for more insightful advice from Whitney!

  • 02:50 - Why did Whitney write Disrupt Yourself?
  • 05:35 - Whitney touches on the emotional side of the job, when you first get brought on to a company.
  • 07:35 - Are you on the low-end of the curve or simply on the wrong curve?
  • 07:55 - Are you taking the right kinds of risks?
  • 08:35 - Play to your strengths. We often undervalue them.
  • 10:35 - You will get on the wrong curve, but that doesn't mean it can't benefit you.
  • 11:25 - Constraints can be a good thing when you're trying to disrupt.
  • 12:55 - Whenever you ask people to adopt a brilliant idea, you're asking them to jump to a new curve.
  • 15:35 - How do you really take advantage of constraints? Whitney shares an example.
  • 20:40 - What are good leaders doing to create innovation?
  • 24:15 - What do good leaders do in times of failure?
  • 27:30 - How would Whitney help an executive innovate?
  • 30:20 - How important is curiosity and where do you go to get the proper stimulation?
  • 32:20 - What's next for Whitney?
  • 34:30 - Whitney asked employees, at a Fortune 50, how many of them were using their strengths every day at w
  • 35:55 - What are your morning rituals?
  • 37:00 - What has Whitney changed her mind about recently?
  • 38:00 - What advice would Whitney give to her 25-year-old self?


May 3, 2016

Steven D'Souza is the Founder and Director of Deeper Learning.He is an international educator and the author of two books,Brilliant Networking and Not Knowing. Today, he discusses aleader's relationship with uncertainty and the unknown. He alsodives into how companies can embrace the concept of 'not knowing'and how to teach your staff to be more curious and engaged with theunknown. Find out more about this fascinating subject by listeningin.

  • 03:55 - Uncertainty has a physical impact as well as anemotional impact of feeling threaten.
  • 04:00 - We are afraid to feel the unknown.
  • 04:08 - However, the unknown is not the same asuncertainty.
  • 04:30 - There are many different ways to react to theunknown.
  • 06:40 - It's impossible for leaders to have all theanswers.
  • 07:45 - In the book, Steven discusses the dangers of knowledge,the dangers of thinking we, in fact, do know
  • 08:00 - Why did nobody predict the global financial crisis?People did predict it, but people were over conf
  • 09:05 - We all have limits to what we know.
  • 09:40 - How do companies embrace this idea of 'notknowing'?
  • 13:00 - Successful leadership is making space for others tohelp contribute.
  • 15:20 - Things are not as simple or clear cut as we like tobelieve.
  • 17:35 - When an organization is facing the unknown, it can bean incredibly terrifying place.
  • 21:45 - A lot of innovation happens at the individual level.Steven shares an example.
  • 22:20 - Not knowing can be a blessing sometimes.
  • 24:25 - People who are deep in their industry recognize thelimits of their knowledge.
  • 26:55 - Speak to somebody who doesn't have any knowledge ofyour field and see if you can describe it simply
  • 28:25 - Is there a way to teach others on your team to be morecurious?
  • 30:40 - Steven talks about his first book, BrilliantNetworking.
  • 32:25 - What advice would Steven give his 25-year-oldself?