Category Archives: Innovations

Cool Innovation: Nest Learning Thermostat

Thermostat with a brain.

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Cool Innovation: Mighty Mug!


Mighty? Mightier? Mighty Mug!

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7 Innovation Myths

7. You cannot be innovative (biggest myth of all).

Truth: We were all born with the ability to be innovative. A Harvard research from the book The Innovator’s DNA discovered that innovation is 30% nature, yet 70% nurture.

6. Innovation happens through a wild and crazy and messy process. I’m structured and organized, so I cannot be innovative.

Truth: Innovation needs both: creativity (emotion/messiness) and a system (logic/structure). So it does make sense to start out messy, but innovations sure finish clean. You need both skills. And most people need to develop one of the two.

5. You need to be great at drawing to be innovative.

Truth: You need some drawing skill so you can create your ideas on paper. That’s true. But usually the drawing skill of a 3-year old will do. As long as you can draw a little bit and explain the rest with your words, you’re on the right track.

4. Only smart people can be innovative.

Truth: Not to put anyone down, but there are some very stupid, yet very rich and very creative/innovative entrepreneurs out there. So, no! Super-human intelligence not required.

3. It takes a lot of money to be innovative.

Truth: It takes a little money to be innovative. In a few rare cases, no money.

2. Focus groups are great for innovation.

Truth: Most focus groups are terrible for innovation. The main reason being is that most focus group leaders still ask the WRONG questions. If you ask the RIGHT questions, focus groups can be great.

1. Innovation is only for high-tech

Truth: Innovation happens anywhere. From fashion innovations to hospitality innovations to farming innovations to houseware innovations. Across (almost) all industries and at all levels.

Which innovation myth do you have to break through?

© Copyright 2013 Ben A. Ratje All Rights Reserved

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Cool Innovation: LiquiGlide

Ever had trouble getting ketchup out of the bottle?

Or mustard? Or any type of sauce?

Well, if you’re like me you’ve probably also had enough of these annoying times.

Finally there is a solution, check out LiquiGlide:

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12 Quick Ways to Become More Creative and Innovative










1. Post-its, post-its, post-its. Where? Everywhere!

2. Use more colors. Color paper. Color pens.

3. Hang out with creative people. Nothing beats learning from those who have already achieved.

4. Hang out with (a few) weird people. Weird people are those who always think opposite to most.

5. Order something different. We tend to always order the same food, coffee, tea, etc. Try something new!

6. Do what you’re afraid to do. Behind our fears, lie our treasures. (Just don’t endanger yourself.)

7. Do what other age groups do. If you’re in your 40s, do what your kids do.

8. Practice simple drawing. To create something new, you must be able to draw it first.

9. Try to find a new product/service every day. Either online or in stores or magazines. Become a sponge for new ideas.

10. Bring something to show whenever you meet someone. A magazine article, or picture, or website you show on your phone. Get used to sharing ideas.

11. Challenge yourself to do a project you always wanted to do. If you want to write a book, start writing the first page now. If you want to build your own company, start writing a ½ page business plan now.

12. Innovations come from problems. Look for problems everywhere. We created knives and forks because we were sick and tired of eating with our hands. We created cars because we were too lazy to walk and because of time saving. We created twitter out of boredom.

To find out more great tips on how to become more creative, check out my book Edge Innovation

© Copyright 2012 Ben A. Ratje All Rights Reserved

photo credit: <a href=””>bitzi ☂ ion-bogdan dumitrescu</a> via <a href=””>photopin</a&gt; <a href=””>cc</a&gt;

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The Ultimate Entrepreneur (aka Richard Branson & his top 7 quotes)

Who is the “ultimate entrepreneur”?

You could say Steve Jobs. You could say Bill Gates. You could name many other famous business founders of large companies, but you won’t quite find someone like him…

Richard Branson

The founder of Virgin Group and over 400 Virgin companies has been an entrepreneur since age 16 and getting his vision out there into the world. Not 1 time, but 400 times (and counting). How many entrepreneurs do you know who have founded over 400 companies?

He is what I consider to be the “ultimate entrepreneur”, a great guy on top and I believe there is a lot to learn from him not just for entrepreneurs but anyone in business.

Below are my personal favorite 7 quotes from him:

7. “You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over.”

6. “A business has to be involving, it has to be fun, and it has to exercise your creative instincts.”

5. “I never get the accountants in before I start up a business. It’s done on gut feeling, especially if I can see that they are taking the mickey out of the consumer.”

4. “Having a personality of caring about people is important. You can’t be a good leader unless you generally like people. That is how you bring out the best in them.”

3. “Above all, you want to create something you’re proud of. This has always been my philosophy of business. I can honestly say that I have never gone into any business purely to make money. If that is the sole motive, then I believe you are better off not doing it.”

2. “I don’t think of work as work and play as play. It’s all living.”

1. “My interest in life comes from setting myself huge, apparently unachievable challenges and trying to rise above them.”

0. “Business opportunities are like buses, there’s always another one coming.”

Awaken the Branson in You!

Ben A. Ratje

P.S. Check out Richard’s book ‘Screw It, Let’s Do It’:

P.P.S. For more quotes, visit and

© Copyright 2012 Ben A. Ratje All Rights Reserved

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10 Questions to Innovation

1. Why NOT?

2. WHO are we innovating for?

3. What’s the PROBLEM?

4. What’s the REAL problem?

5. What do customers HATE about our product/service?

6. What do WE hate about our product/service?

7. What do our competitors NOT see?

8. What would our customers DIE TO BUY?

9. What’s the EASY WAY to solve this?

10. What would Richard Branson do? (

For more practical tips on creating innovations, check out

© Copyright 2012 Ben A. Ratje All Rights Reserved

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INNOVATION: Camping + Luxury = ???

Camping + Luxury = The Opera Luxury Camper Trailer

Now, that’s camping in style!

For more info, check:

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INNOVATION: Edison Chopsticks (made in Korea)

Have you ever had problems eating with chopsticks?

Well, you’re not the only one.

Believe it or not, but every year millions of Asian parents have a very tough time teaching their young children to use chopsticks properly.

(If it’s hard for people from Asia, then how about the rest of us? BIG problem!!!)

Luckily there is a solution for you, all non-Asian chopstick users, and all Asian parents and children: The Edison Chopstick(TM).

I tested it with my team and some friends, and we found it fantastic.

Have a look for yourself:

To your innovations,

Ben A. Ratje


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How do you clean even the toughest, bacteria-loaded spots?

CyberClean is your and my answer.

CyberClean might not be new to you if you’re from North America or Europe, but just newly came to Korea (I found it at a convention),and instantly got me excited.

As always, most innovations should solve problems, and this one definitely does!

Check out the video review for more information:

To your success,

Ben A. Ratje

© Copyright 2011 Ben A. Ratje All Rights Reserved

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