Fall Speaker Series 

Wednesday, Oct 17:  Innovation in Mature/Price Driven/"Boring" Categories
Tuesday, November 13: Overcoming Innovation Execution Challenges

October 17, 2018, 9:00 - 10:30am - Register now
November 13, 2018, 9:00 - 10:30am - Register now
Registration is complimentary. Space is limited.

Where:  Mason Hall 2nd Floor Rotunda, 250 W. Woodruff Avenue Columbus, OH 43210 
Parking is available in the Lane Avenue and  Tuttle Parking Garages.

Oct 17: Innovation in Mature/Price Driven/"Boring" Categories

Tracy StephensJoin innovation expert Tracy Stephens as she discusses how to innovate in categories where all that can be innovated on seems to have been done. This of course can be a major problem if a significant portion of your business portfolio is in these categories. She will share examples of categories that were re-energized, extended and expanded by nonobvious innovations. She will also share her 5-stage approach for unlocking a big idea in even the most challenging categories. 

Register now for October 17 session.

About Tracy Stephens Consultancy
After 30 years of global experience driving innovation in blue chip companies, 28 of those 30 working on P&G's billion dollar brands, Tracy Stephens Consultancy was born - to help businesses connect the dots, find the big idea and drive it to commercialization.

Tuesday, November 13: Getting Out of Your Own Way - Overcoming Innovation Execution Challenges

David ShawDrawing on his extensive experience empowering companies to solve human-centered problems, David Shaw, director of brand strategy at IBM iX, will help you understand how to overcome challenges with the execution side of innovation. David will provide insights on better aligning people and processes to deliver on customer insights and implementing your innovation initiatives in way that is differentiated, sustainable and true to your brand.

Register now for November 13 session


Past Events

  • Fall 2018 Speaker Series

    Sept 12: The Art & Science of Innovation ROI-How the Foundation Impacts the Returns

    Innovation is the business buzzword of the day, but many companies haven't cracked the code on how to transform this vague notion into tangible financial ROI.

    Innovation is a newly charted territory, which means there is often ambiguity about how to define it, how to execute on it successfully and what the outcomes should be at the end of the day. Learn about the critical areas of success that many companies miss in their innovation journey. Kristen Jordan, Brightidea's Director of Professional Services, and Michelle Brown, Senior Account Executive at Brightidea will share strategies for turning your innovation vision into financial returns. 

    Kristen JordanKristen Jordan, Director of Professional Services at Brightidea
    With twenty years of innovation and engagement experience, Kristen Jordan has an extensive amount of knowledge around the successes and pitfalls of innovation strategy and execution. Having managed the Humana Innovation Center and consulted with dozens of clients at various points in their innovation journey, she has driven success with companies large and small all across the world. Kristen is based out of Louisville, Ky.

    Michelle BrownMichelle Brown, Senior Account Executive at Brightidea
    Working closely with Corporate Innovation teams for more than ten years, Michelle Brown, has a deep understanding of the challenges nascent innovation programs face.  With her hands-on experience aligning executives and validating strategies, she helps teams minimize risk by guiding them through the process of formalizing their vision into an actionable plan.  Michelle is based out of Brightidea HQ in San Francisco, CA.

    About Brightidea
    At Brightidea, we're passionate about innovation. We believe it's the lifeblood of progress, advancing the human condition and improving the world around us. To that end, we've set out to accelerate the success of innovation by empowering those behind it with advanced software to facilitate and streamline the ideation process--and the collaboration it thrives on. 

  • August 8: Digital Economy & the Workforce



    Digital technology is the driving force in our faster and more connected world, transforming how we interact, how we live, and how we work. In the business world, this has led to disrupted industry titans and new power players, putting power in the hands of customers and fundamentally changing the jobs we do. In this digital economy, how do we keep and grow a customer base with shifting brand loyalty and increasingly higher standards? And how do we adapt to the new technological demands in the jobs we have – and hire for?

    The Ohio State University Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Center for Operational Excellence are pleased to partner with Fisher College of Business’ National Center for the Middle Market and Risk Institute to offer a pair of morning sessions focused on the digital economy. The June session looks downstream at the new imperative of the customer experience, while the August session presents recent research on the digitalization of the workforce.

    The Digital Economy, Part 2: The Employee
    Wednesday, Aug. 8: 9am – 11:30am

    Mark Muro Brookings InstitutionThe summer sessions continue with this look at technological transformation and its implications inside the workplace, headlined by a featured keynote from Mark Muro, senior fellow and policy director of the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution. Muro is the lead author on a fascinating and wide-ranging report published last fall, Digitalization and the American Workforce, that found the share of jobs requiring a low digital skill level has plunged since 2002 from 56 percent to 30 percent, while those requiring a high level of digital skill vaulted from a mere 5 percent in 2002 to 23 percent last year.

    Following the featured keynote, Muro will participate in a multi-industry discussion panel that also includes Cynthia Dungey, director of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, and representatives from Honda and NiSource.

    8:15 - 9 a.m.: Networking / light breakfast
    9 - 11:30: Featured keynote / discussion panel
    11:30 a.m.: Program concludes

  • Summer Session 1: Digital Economy & The Customer, June 27, 2018

    The Digital Economy, Part 1: The Customer
    Wednesday, June 27: 9am - noon (registration & breakfast beginning at 8:30am)

    In today’s digitized world, it’s no longer just about the product or the service – it’s about the customer experience, and a company’s ability to deliver a great one can be a key differentiator. Many B2C and B2B organizations, however, aren’t designed from the ground up to deliver a great customer experience. So how can they get there?


    In this session, co-authors Tom Stewart and Patricia O’Connell present insights from their book Woo, Wow, and Win: Service Strategy and the Art of Customer Delight. Stewart, executive director of the National Center for the Middle Market, and O’Connell contend that customer experience is more than customer service. Instead, it must be woven into the fabric of the company, in each process and across all channels. Stewart and O’Connell show how to apply the principles of service design and close the gap between company strategy and customer experience – particularly as markets digitize. With this framework, organizations can define the experience they want, set customers’ expectations accordingly, and meet them at every critical point. Attendees will gain new insights on how to embed customer value throughout the value stream, not just at the final handoff.

    David ShawNext, IBM iX Director of Brand Strategy David Shaw will provide an inside look at how technology is creating new challenges for established brands and their relationships with customers.

    David TrimmFinally, join us for a conversation with David Trimm, Chief Information Officer for The Wendy's Company, as he shares insights on how the company is working to transform the customer experience with mobile ordering and in-store kiosks, among other innovations, while staying true to the nearly half-century-old brand.

  • Design thinking & Jobs-to-be-done, June 6, 2018

    June Innovation Practice Workshop 

    Can Jobs-to-be-Done and Design Thinking be integrated to form one superior innovation approach?

    When: Wednesday, June 6, 2018, 9:00 - 10:30am (Doors open at 8:30am)

    Jobs-to-be-Done (JTBD) and Design Thinking are two popular innovation approaches used by many companies. While each approach exists to help organizations drive innovation and growth, they have different philosophical foundations and, consequently, different strengths and weaknesses. Up until now, companies have had to choose one approach over the other. This has forced companies to miss out on the unique benefits of the approach not chosen. But what if there were a way to meld the best of each approach into one process? Can it be done? Would it deliver superior results?

    In this presentation, leaders from two consultancies - Urko Wood from Reveal Growth Consultants (a JTBD consultancy) and Monica Weiler, Ph.D. from the Stratos Innovation Group (a Design Thinking and Strategy Consultancy) - will present a brief overview of their respective approaches including the philosophical foundations and the strengths and weaknesses as they see it related to the other approach. They will also share their thoughts about how the best of each approach can be melded into one process that delivers superior results. 

  • Innovation Summit 2018 sponsored by the Cullman Family

    Innovation Summit 2018
    Sponsored by the Cullman Family

    Wednesday, April 25, 2018
    9:00a.m. - 4:00pm 
    Fawcett Center Ballrooms



    Organizations of all sizes strive to build a culture in which employees demonstrate an entrepreneurial mindset in order to drive innovation, sustainable growth and long-term impact. The Innovation Summit 2018 brings together perspectives from industry and academia to better understand strategies and tactics to transform culture and drive long-term growth.

    Join us to explore insights, resources and connections to help your organization address the challenges and opportunities related to building an entrepreneurial culture.

    Who will attend: Entrepreneurial-minded leaders, academics & students. Innovators, technology leaders, R&D experts, marketing executives and managers from diverse industries.

    Featured Speakers

    Bob Welsh, Vice President of Breakthrough Innovation, Stanley Black and Decker, Inc.

    headshotInvesting in an Ecosystem of Breakthrough Innovation
    Mr. Welsh will share Stanley Black and Decker's ongoing journey to cultivate a culture of innovation in this multinational organization, including a highly successful product innovation made possible through the support and collaboration of senior leadership, the core business and the breakthrough innovation team.

    Interactive Panel: Successes and Challenges of Innovation Projects and Initiatives

    headshotModerator: Dr. Tanya Menon, Associate Professor of Management & Human Resources, Fisher College of Business
    Companies continually strive to create a collaborative, customer-centric environment to drive growth. Our panel of experts will share their own journeys to build an innovation initiative, followed by roundtable discussions.


    Kathy Domer
    Senior Manager, Customer Innovation

    Todd Fitz
    Principal Engineer, Advanced Materials Research
    Honda R&D Americas

    Chris Johnson
    Director of Enterprise Innovation and Technology


    Interactive Session with Dr. Aravind Chandrasekaran
    Associate Professor in Management Sciences, Fisher College of Business

    headshotStrategic Innovation Simulation: Understanding and Managing Sustaining, Radical and Disruptive Innovation
    In this session, Dr. Aravind Chandrasekaran will help your organization better identify and manage sustaining, radical and disruptive innovation. Following a presentation, attendees will form teams and engage in a hands-on innovation simulation to learn how to manage innovation investment tradeoffs, address timing and investment across mature and new businesses, and make choices in response to market opportunities and financial and product constraints, all within an environment of uncertainty. Please bring a laptop or iPad for this simulation.

    View the agenda

  • Managing Uncertainty, March 6, 2018

    Managing Uncertainty in Innovation Projects with Dr. Aravind Chandrasekaran
    Tuesday, March 6, 9-10:30am

    The ability to manage uncertainty is key to executing innovation projects across the spectrum from incremental to radical innovation. In this 90 minute workshop, Dr. Aravind Chandrasekaran, award winning associate professor in management sciences at the Fisher College of Business, will lead an interactive exercise, followed by a discussion of how to identify and manage four different forms of project uncertainty, from variation to chaos. The exercise and discussion will highlight the importance of collaboration and agile thinking as well as finding a balance between planning and learning to achieve success with your innovation projects.

    Dr. Aravind Chandrasekaran is an Associate Professor in Management Sciences at the Fisher College of Business. He received his PhD in Operations and Management Sciences from the University of Minnesota. Dr. Chandrasekaran’s research investigates innovation, learning and knowledge creation issues in a variety of areas including high-tech R&D, manufacturing and health-care delivery. In recent years, he has begun to study the challenges involved in developing patient-centric healthcare models by working with several physician and nursing leaders. Learn more on Professor AC’s blog, Translating Research to Practice.

  • Innovation Theater, Jan. 18, 2018

    Are you Innovating or Stuck in Innovation Theater?
    Thursday, January 18, 9:00am - 10:30am

    Hyper-growth start-ups are driving established companies out of the Fortune 500 and disrupting entire industries on a regular basis. Corporations find themselves more than ever in need of change, but many struggle to keep pace with the rapid pace of innovation.

    The traditional management practice of planning and control stifles enterprise innovation. To succeed, corporations need a different organizational structure. In this session, Brett will discuss how today's world demands a new management approach that transforms the risk of change into an asset. Ryan will lead a discussion on innovation and product creation.

    Join CIE, Ryan Frederick, and Brett Buchanan to learn about practicing sustainable growth and innovation through new approaches and techniques.

    Ryan Frederick, Principal AWH
    In addition to being Principal at AWH, a product consulting and creation company, Ryan is the Director of Startup Grind, a global startup community designed to educate, inspire, and connect entrepreneurs. Ryan has helped many companies grow their sales, revenues, market share, and profitability. He has worked with companies across a variety industries and of all shapes and sizes. One of Frederick's passions is to help startups grow from inception, to viability, through to sustainability.

    Brett Buchanan, Director, Product Management at Gap Inc.
    Brett Buchanan is an experienced and proven product leader with a passion for delivering the right new set of technology investments to move the business forward. He has had the opportunity to build products from scratch, as well as grow and evolve existing businesses that are used by millions of people. Currently at Gap, Buchanan leads a team of product managers responsible for the payment experience and products.

  • Wolstein Entrepreneurial Leadership Summit

    Bert L. and Iris S. Wolstein
    Entrepreneurial Leadership Summit
    Ohio Pathways to Entrepreneurship

    Thursday, November 9, 2017, 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

    It's an exciting time for entrepreneurship in Columbus, the region and the state of Ohio. A Forbes article recently touted Ohio as "the best state in America to launch a start up," and the Kauffman Foundation recently rated Columbus number one in scaling startups.

    Join us to learn more about how Ohio State's support of student entrepreneurs through the Wolstein Scholars and other programs, and hear from entrepreneurs, the venture capital community and the Smart Columbus initiative.

    Who will attend:
    Leaders from the entrepreneurship, venture capital and accelerator communities, innovators, academics and students.


    Featured Speakers

    headshotShawn Springs, Founder and CEO, Windpact
    Protecting Body & Mind: An Entrepreneurial Journey

    Join us to learn more about Shawn's inspiring entrepreneurial journey as the founder and CEO of Windpact, an impact protection company developing safety technology to be used in sports, military and recreation equipment.

    Interactive Panel: Student Pathways to Entrepreneurship
    This interactive discussion will feature Wolstein Scholars and other entrepreneurial Ohio State students and alumni who will share their experiences along the entrepreneurship continuum.

    headshotJordan Davis, Director, Smart Columbus
    Pathways to Opportunity

    Learn more about Smart Columbus' innovative public and private partnerships and how the initiative is setting the path forward for entrepreneurship and economic opportunity in central Ohio.


    headshotGene Smith, Senior Vice President & Wolfe Foundation Endowed Athletics Director
    Learn more about how the Wolstein Leadership Academy equips student-athletes with the knowledge and skills necessary to emerge as leaders on and off the playing field.

    Interactive Panel, The Entrepreneurial Future of Ohio
    A panel of experts from central Ohio's thriving entrepreneurship community will discuss the future of entrepreneurship in the region and beyond. Featuring:

    Falon Donohue
    Venture Ohio

    Cheryl Turnbull
    Sr. Director, Venture Capital and New Ventures
    The Ohio State University

    Wayne Embree
    Executive Vice President
    Rev 1 Ventures

    Rich Langdale
    NCT Ventures

  • August 16 2017, Summer Session Part 2: Data and Digital Disruption


    Fisher's Summer Series on top business challenges continues in August with a look at how the explosion of data and disruptive digital technologies are transforming businesses in a variety of industries.

    Today, technology companies aren’t the only ones that need to be worried about a disruptor appearing overnight and rewriting the rules of the game. The accelerating pace of digital innovation – and a related explosion of available data
    – is a force to be reckoned with in any industry, and successfully adapting for the digital age is becoming a critical factor in growing competitive edge. For companies that invest in staying ahead of the curve, the opportunities are many – but so are the risks.

    “Top Business Challenges: Data and Digital Disruption” features a blend of big-picture perspectives on digital disruption and risk along with a ground-level view inside companies finding their own way in this exciting new territory:

    Featured speakers at the session include:

    • Digital Vortex: Jeremy Aston, a senior director at IT giant Cisco, kicks off the morning with a look inside the company’s own digital transformation and research insights from Digital Vortex, a new book co-written by leaders in its Digitization Office. Past Cisco research has found that as many as 40 percent of industry incumbents could be affected by digital disruption in the next half-decade, yet only a quarter of executives say they’re proactively tackling the challenge.
    • Transformed Digital, Born Digital: The session continues with a pair of case studies of two very different companies leveraging data and digital technologies in unique ways to grow and thrive. Bruce Millard, VP of Digital and Customer Innovation at Columbus-based Safelite, will share how the 70-year-old company has transformed itself for the digital age. Mark and Megan Kvamme, founders of Columbus-based FactGem, follow up by sharing their “born digital” story and how they’ve harnessed the power of data analytics at their local startup.
    • Data and Digital Risk: Dennis Hirsch, director of the Program on Data and Governance at Ohio State’s Moritz College of Law, closes out the morning with a look at the many risks companies leveraging data and digital technology should be aware of.
  • September 19 2017, Innovation Practice Workshop

    How to Deliver Dramatically Better Innovation Results with "Jobs-to-Be-Done"
    Mason Hall Rotunda, Columbus, OH | 8:30-10:00am (doors open at 8:00am)

    We know from study after study that the key to successful growth is having a clear understanding of customers' unmet needs.

    Yet many leaders struggle with how to innovate, differentiate and grow because they don't know where their target customers' needs remain unmet. Without this information, it's very hard to create new offerings that matter, or brand messaging and positioning that connects. Instead, leaders resort to guessing about what will create value for customers and, not surprisingly, this leads to high failure rates, frustration, wasted resources and damaged reputation.

    Join CIE and Urko Wood to learn about the jobs-to-be-done approach to uncovering your customer's unmet needs in a form that is ideal for driving innovation and growth. The JTBD approach enables companies to: 

    • Turn innovation into a predictable business process increasing new product success rates 2 - 3X
    • Create new offerings that customers want, experiences that delight, and messaging that connects
    • Complement and improve other approaches, e.g., design thinking, lean startup, etc.
    • Prevent wasting time and money on ideas customers don't want
    • Accelerate revenue growth

    This interactive workshop will include a brief overview with time for application and Q&A.

    When: Tuesday, September 19, 8:30 - 10:00am (Doors open at 8:00am).
    Light breakfast items and beverages will be provided.
    Where: Mason Hall 2nd Floor Rotunda, 250 W. Woodruff Avenue. Parking is available in the Lane Avenue and  Tuttle Parking Garages.

    Urquhart (Urko) Wood, Founder and President, Reveal Growth
    Urko started Reveal Growth Consultants in 2012 to help clients differentiate, innovate, and grow using the jobs-to-be-done approach. Some of his clients include Battelle Memorial, Becton Dickinson, Cintas, General Motors, Herman Miller, Microsoft, Morgan Stanley, and NetJets. For seven years prior, he was a Strategy Advisor at Strategyn, the pioneer and leader of the jobs-to-be-done approach. Urko is a Contributing Writer on growth strategy for The Business Journals. He has a BA from Kenyon College and an MBA in Marketing from The Wharton School.

  • July 18 2017, Summer Session Part 1: Winning the Talent War

    Tuesday, July 18, 2017, 9:00am-noon 

    The U.S. work force is at a turning point, with change swirling everywhere: Millennials are now the largest generation in the workplace. Baby boomers – and their decades of institutional knowledge – are nearing retirement after putting it off during last decade’s recession. Constant technological leaps are rewriting the rules for the skill sets that matter. What does this mean for organizations trying to attract and hire today’s talent? How does this change the game for their ongoing efforts to build an innovation culture and develop their existing employees?

    At this session, gain insights on this issue from three compelling angles:

    • The Big Picture: Brookings Institution Fellow Marek Gootman will be unveiling results of a new work-force survey conducted in conjunction with the National Center for the Middle Market. The survey, set to be released in late June, looks at how companies are responding to large-scale shifts in work-force dynamics to hire and retain workers.
    • The Ground War: Join four talent acquisition and management leaders from major Ohio-based companies for a wide-ranging panel discussion on how their organizations are responding to these work-force trends. The panel, moderated by Fisher HR expert Marc Ankerman, features:
      • Tony Moore, head of talent acquisition, Marathon Petroleum Corp
      • Will Shepherd, director of enterprise learning and development, Wendy's Co.
      • Kathy Smith, VP talent development, Nationwide
      • Kelly Wilson, VP HR-talent management, Cardinal Health 
    • The Pipeline: Jamie Mathews-Mead, senior director of graduate career management at Fisher closes out the session with a look at how the college is preparing students to best meet companies’ rapidly evolving needs and how organizations can best partner with the college to build and grow their work forces.
  • Innovation Summit 2017 Sponsored by the Cullman Family


    Innovation and Disruption in the Next Digital Age
    Hosted by The Ohio State University
    Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

    Wednesday, May 10, 2017, 8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. Doors open at 8 a.m.
    Fawcett Center Ballrooms, 2400 Olentangy River Road, Columbus, OH 43210

    Breakfast and lunch provided

    Digital technologies — such as analytics, mobile, social media, embedded devices and artificial intelligence — continue to advance rapidly as enabling and disruptive forces in many industries. Join us to learn more about the strategic and organizational factors that drive successful innovation and digital transformation.

    The Ohio State University Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship’s Innovation Summit 2017 will bring together perspectives from industry and academia. We will explore a variety of frameworks, insights, resources and connections to better understand and address innovation challenges. The program will feature engaging speakers and unique and interactive program design.


    Entrepreneurial-minded leaders, academics & students. Innovators, technology leaders, R&D experts, marketing executives and managers from diverse industries


    Trish GormanDr. Trish Gorman, Innovation Expert, The Ohio State University Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

    Innovators, Disruptors & Strategists: Competing in the Digital Arena
    Dr. Gorman’s interactive session will provide tools and approaches to help you set your firm’s innovation agenda and strategize in the face of disruptive forces. How can your organization benefit from artificial intelligence, big data, IoT, social or mobile?  Applying the fundamentals of innovation can help your firm harness digital technologies to create new sources of value. Trish Gorman is an educator and author with extensive consulting experience.  She has developed innovation tools used in hundreds of organizations and leads programs in corporate entrepreneurship and innovative growth strategies. 

    dmangesAn Interview with Dan Manges, Chief Technology Officer, Root
    Conversation led by Ryan Frederick, Principal, AWH and Director, StartUp Grind
    Dan Manges is the CTO of Root, an auto insurance startup that uses data science to identify and insure good drivers. Root was started in 2015 in Columbus, Ohio, and has raised $7M from Drive Capital. By not insuring bad drivers, Root is able to reduce insurance premiums for good drivers significantly. Prior to Root, Dan was the founding CTO of Braintree, an online payments company that was acquired by PayPal in 2013 for $800M.


    j.sonnettOpportunities and Challenges of Digital Transformation
    Facilitated by Jim Sonnett, Redwood Innovation
    Digital technologies continue to transform customer experience, internal processes and entire business models. Our expert panel will discuss strategies and challenges related to identifying and capturing new opportunities.

    mweilerDesign Thinking and Disruption in the Wild
    Facilitated by Monica Weiler, Stratos Innovation Group
    More than ever, companies are using a design thinking approach to create disruptive solutions. Our unique workshop-style panel of experts and design thinking pioneers will discuss the realities of design thinking "in the wild" and will share their insights, successes and challenges. The discussion time will include rapid hands-on activities and useful tools to help you navigate the complexities and ambiguity when integrating design thinking into your innovation process.

  • Executive Education - Innovation Practice

    Infuse an Innovation Competency Into Your Organization
    Learn how to effectively harness the theories, tools and practices of innovation for your employees, teams and organization

    Sustainable innovation is one of the most important issues facing businesses today. The introduction of new ideas, products, services and processes that drive revenue growth for industries and companies requires a culture of innovation in which every employee is engaged.

    Our research and experience confirms that creating and maintaining an innovative culture requires trained experts to guide and encourage innovation.

    The Ohio State University Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the Fisher College of Business Executive Education program are once again offeringInnovation Practice, an interactive, project-based course which provides strategies for top-line revenue growth across the organization. Over the course of five consecutive Fridays, students learn to apply the theories, tools and practices of innovation that create, capture and deliver value to an organization and its customers. Topics include the types and levels of innovation; ideation and design thinking; consumer research methodologies; competitive strategy; risk management and measurement; portfolio management; organizational structures; and leadership and culture.

    When: Five sessions on Fridays in 2016:
    January 22 8 a.m. - 1 p.m.
    January 29 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
    February 5 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
    February 12 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
    February 19 8 a.m. - noon