Minding The Giraffes
The People Side of Innovation
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Minding The Giraffes Book - Front Cover

Publication Date: November 12, 2012

This book is about the people whose ideas continually transform business through new products, markets, and opportunities touching every aspect of what an organization does.  It is also a field guide for those intent on reaping the full rewards of strategic innovation.

Who are the real innovators?  How do they function in a business context?  Why does the author dub them Giraffes?  And finally, what can leadership do to support them in producing on-going innovation?  Strategic consultant John Di Frances identifies key personality traits and requirements of the business community’s most creative members.  Giraffe innovators have the ability to recognize or ‘see’ emerging opportunities.  They thrive on discovering simple solutions to complex problems.  But CEO’s beware!  Giraffes have also been known to drive themselves and others to the very brink in their dogged efforts to realize ‘what is possible.’

If innovation can, indeed, pull the proverbial rabbit out of the hat and turn flagging organizations into marketplace leaders practically overnight, then why is it that so few have harnessed the ‘rags to riches’ power of this important strategy?  It seems that an aura of confusion surrounds the whole subject of innovation.  Author John Di Frances not only dispels misunderstandings but holds that the benefits of innovation are not just the purview of organizations with hefty R&D budgets.  Actually, they are within the reach of every organization — that is with the help of a Giraffe or two or, depending on the size of your business, maybe even an entire herd.  

While the current trend looks to philosophies, systems and methods, Di Frances takes a different approach.  He insists that successful innovation is largely dependent on an organization’s culture and that ‘The People Side of Innovation’ must be its primary driver.  For future sustainability, leadership needs to shift its focus to the visionary Giraffe innovators who, on a lighter side, happen to share an assortment of interesting characteristics with nature’s giraffe.

Readers learn some fascinating details about this beautiful, nomadic creature native to Africa’s grasslands, but mainly about developing new breakthrough paradigms as John emphatically demonstrates that building an innovation-friendly, organization-wide culture around the ‘ideas people’ is the most effective way to accomplish systemic innovation.  The book is rich with professional insights, lively object lessons, and examples.  A biographical sketch of a famous innovator and  thought questions follow each chapter.

A uniquely unconventional perspective on achieving sustainability through the cultivation of breakthrough innovation.  Business leaders gain new understanding on the critical imperative of Minding the Giraffes.

*  This is the first book of John's Understanding Innovation Series: Book I - The People of Innovation - Minding the Giraffes, Book II - The Leadership of Innovation, Book III - The Process of Innovation, and Book IV - The Product of Innovation.


Buy Minding The Giraffes now.