What a great week; thanks everyone

An incredibly exciting week is drawing to an end. I’m on the ferry, heading back home, reflecting on the past five days and the number of engaged and passionate people I’ve met – people that all desire to drive change, create innovation and build a better future. What an awesome week.

Monday saw me teach “Facebook IPO” to our third year Bachelor students. The morning session started off with “understanding Facebook’s Business Model”. Using the Business Model Canvas, the students attempted to map out the key drivers of Facebook’s revenue structure and overall business model. Challenging exercise, but thanks to the recent IPO filings, more light is shed on this extremely successful company. Imagine, started eight years ago, and today it has one of the highest profits per employee of any company in the world.

Our afternoon session took us through “understanding Facebook’s IPO communication process”. Using recent press clippings, news reports and YouTube-videos, we were able to build a picture of the ongoing battle between Facebook stakeholders with massive incentives to drive a success story, while a critical press and skeptical analysts attempted to balance the picture. My personal favorite was WSJ’s “Five Concerns about Facebook IPO”, concluding that the company would require an “adult CEO” to grow as a public company. Hahaha. That’s Apple and John Sculley all over again. Zuck; stay CEO, stay true to the Hacker’s Way.

Tuesday brought a full class of first year students in Organization and leadership. There truly are the leaders of tomorrow, and our Business School owes them the best it can give. We started off with a slideset concluding “This Course is About You and Your Leadership Development”. Divided into teams of five, the students will work on various learning and development challenges throughout the semester.

Wednesday morning brought kick-off for a ten day, nine months, leadership development program of a global oil and gas company. Opening day focused on bringing innovation thinking into the leadership role. Using extensive material from strategic innovation and The Management Innovation Exchange, the 23 executive students got a solid mental challenge to stretch their existing mental models of their own leadership roles.

Wednesday afternoon (some would say evening) I had the pleasure of teaching our course on ‘’Innovation and Entrepreneurship’’ for 25 Bachelor students. After an initial set of student presentations (major room for improvement), we set off trying to understand how Norwegian firms can learn from Apple’s innovation processes. Using the movie “Pirates of Sillicon Valley”, the student got a good grasp of the founding days of both Apple and Microsoft. Great movie and highly inspirational for tomorrow’s innovators.

Thursday morning it was back to the oil & gas executives, this time together with a BI teaching colleague. Our second day focused on personal reflection, communication styles and coaching training. It was a great start to our year-long program, and I am truly looking forward to working with these executives for our ten day leadership training program.

Thursday afternoon was an event I had been looking forward to for some time; the Innovation seminar at Young in Statoil. These guys are the next generation leadership at Statoil, and getting invited to give a keynote presentation on innovation is a great honor. My two hour talk covered “Dream Bigger”, “The Dinosaur and the Pirate” and how you can create management innovation in your own team or department. Read more about the Innovation Seminar here.

Friday morning I was on the ferry to Haugesund for Haugesund Næringforening ‘s lunch seminar. I was invited to give a keynote on Apple and what Norwegian firms can learn from Apple’s innovation success. You can read more about the keynote here.

Now, sitting on the ferry back home, allows for reflection on great learning, great conversations and truly inspiring encounters with people of all ages and all backgrounds trying to change their business models, and their organizations for the better.

My best advice, “Dream Bigger” and “Just do it”.
To quote Walt Disney, “It’s kind of fun to do the impossible. Remember, it all started with a dream”.


Teaching 2012

This extended Christmas Holiday has given ample room for reflection – and preparation. Preparation for a busy and exciting teaching year 2012.

Starting January I begin my first of seven programs taught for the spring semester. I have been fortunate enough to land a wide variety of courses, allowing and challenging me to think different when it comes to teaching each of them.

The core of our teaching philosophy is experential learning. The idea that learning can´t be ´told, it has to be éxperienced´(or felt). Learning, to truly take place, needs to involve, engage, activate, stimulate, challenge and provide a sense of mastery. This, of course, can´t happen through only use of class room lectures. We need something more. We need something different.

Second; as teachers, writers and consultants in strategic innovation, we daily challenge the people we meet to #Dreambigger. As for ourselves. Planning this upcoming teaching year requires us to think different. Experiment. Be bold and just a little bit crazy. Without this, evolution and innovation cease… Peter Sims, in his truly excellent book on innovation, Little Bets: how breakthrough ideas emerge from small discoveries lays out the philosophy: experiment, start small, take chances, reflect and refine. Only by trial and a bit of error will new insight emerge.

The courses I´ve been planning during the Holidays.

MRK 2033 – International Marketing

Third year marketing course looking at the globalization of businesses. While international marketing is the title, the course is designed around the whole aspect of internationalization. Central in this program is understanding the emergence of the BRICs and N-11 countries, the financial challenges of Europe, the political challenges of the US and what all this means for Norwegian businesses. Special emphasis will be put on the quickly growing relationship between Norway and Brazil around oil and gas-related services. As a part of the course, we´re arranging a unique “Brazil theme day” on March 13th.
Innovative approach:
A full-day Brazil theme day conference. For now we can reveal an incredible mix of industry executives, young students, Brazilians, politicans and an impressive up-to-date insight into “Successful Market Entry Into Brazil”. The full program will be annonounced early January 2012.

Will also be using Facebook Group as a social media platform to engage the class outside the classroom.

ELE3701 – Innovation and Entreprenurship
A second year elective on innovation. This is a introduction program to innovative thinking, entreprenurship and intraprenurship. I have chosen the gaming (video gaming, social gaming) industry as a potentially special unit of analysis and a strong potential for the exam project.

Innovative approach:
Working closely with a local technology company to help them develop new innovations around one of their business units. The company felt its existing employees were “too old to see all the possibilities” and jumped at the opportunity of working with a full class of 20 – 24 year olds. This is the core of experiental learning, as students will integrate theory and practice – if everything comes together.

Will be using Facebook Group as a social media platform to engage the class outside the classroom.

ORG3640 – Communications for managers and organizations

How do succesfull leaders and organizations communicate?
What can we learn from JFK, Mr. King, Al Gore, Mosquitoes, TED and crisis management? How can we strucure, pitch and make a lasting impression with our audiences?
These are some of the questions we cover.

Innovative approach:
Using role play on video analysis based on true life cases.

ORG3402 – Organizational Behavior and Leadership
How does organizations work? How does leadership work?
This introduction class for first year business school students is the perfect avenue to get them hooked on the intricacies of management and leadership. It will also be a great venue to listen and understand what the next generation expect from leaders and how they themselves want to lead. Especially as this “Social media generation” is moving into early leadership positions.

Innovative approach:
Using video analysis to illustrate organizational behaviour. If only I had been following Paradise Hotel… Not a problem, I will let the students find these video clips themselves…

ORG2000 – Leadership in Action

I love this course. This is the integrative course at our Bachelor program for experienced participants (mostly managers). This program challenges students to take responsibility for their learning in a truly novel way. Also, this unique program combines leadership, strategy, innovation, coaching and team building into one single learning experience. This is not a course. It´s an experience.

Innovative approach:
The program in itself is truly innovative.

First-time Leader (Corporate program)
This is a corporate program for young and first-time leaders. This will be a lot of fun, as the company has spent the last four years developing a very strong internal culture and leadership model. It will be a pleasure to learn more of the work they have done and see how I can blend the topics and material we have, into the existing foundation they have developed.

Innovative approach:

Situational leadership and strategy (Corporate program)
Situational leadership is a classic for us at BI. This spring I´ve been lucky enough to teach is as a corporate program. This allows for more alignment with the existing culture, corporate leadership ideas and corporate innovation and strategy development. This is an example of truly integrative teaching at BI, as I will be teaching this together with great colleagues from BI Bergen and BI Nydalen, all managed superbly by our Project Manager in Stavanger.

Innovative approach:
Still thinking, but we will be using the Whole Brain Model and the WBM test for these executive students.

So, my students at BI Norwegian Business School in Stavanger can look forward to some exciting – if challenging – months ahead…

For my part, I´m happy to learn from these approximately 500 – 600 students ranging from international CEO´s to curious 19 year olds with dreams of studying in China, Brazil and Singapore…




Pushing the transformational leadership model to the next level. How do you really understand Google’s leadership model? What does the transformational leadership model not explain?

This innovative team suggests G-leadership. Great view. Innovative thinking. Superb logic and reasoning.
Today at BI’s class in Situational leadership.