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April 23, 2012

Fast Company Magazine’s “Innovation Uncensored”

Last year, about this time, I attended Innovation Uncensored, an event organized by Fast Company magazine in New York City. The event was a day chock full of presentations by thought leaders in different fields. There were no slouches there; even people in the audience are serious about whatever they do and they make things happen. That’s why I went; to meet people who are inspiring, work hard and love what they do.

Until just a few years ago, I had not paid close attention to the word “innovation”. I used to be captivated by the word “invention”, but after having a meeting with a potential client who specialized in product development and therefore “innovation”, not “invention” always, I really became aware and started thinking about it more. Now, “Innovation” is one of my very favorite words. In a nutshell, it means you don’t have to re-invent the wheel, but instead come up with new ways to use the wheel or whatever item you’re working with. Innovative thinking is the equivalent of thinking outside the box.

For me, in my daily work as owner and video producer at Mixed Bag Media, I try to be innovative and think of new ways to tell a story, or new ways to get that killer camera shot. In all honesty, even on my best days, I’m probably not that innovative…yet; but I’m trying and always striving to do something new and better. I’m proud of that. That’s one of a few factors that keeps my work exciting. Some days it’s frustrating because you’re trying something new and it just isn’t working. What happens next…you figure it out; that’s what! Uttering a few curse words at the computer might be in order, but I keep going until I figure it out.

The Innovation Uncensored event was held again recently and due to being busy with multiple projects happening all at the same time, I was unable to attend this year. It is fun to look at the speaker list and imagine what was talked about. It’s fun to imagine who was there. It’s fun for me to imagine what I’ll be doing differently in six months or a year because of some new tool or technique that either just came out or will be coming out. It’s just plain fun to imagine. Innovation doesn’t happen without it!

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