October 5, 2007

Thank you Slam

Filed under: ideas, innovation, team culture, team dynamics — Tags: , — bersi @ 12:18 pm

Have you ever been to a poetry slam? It’s great. People stand up and receite poems of their choice in form of a competition but what it’s really about is not ‘just about poems’. The poets make their stuff come real, they live it. They rap, sing, skat, laugh, dance. It’s personal and passionate. The whole audience was blown away. I had goosebumps. Learned loads without intending to.

I’m asking myself what can we as industry learn from slam?

The closest I’ve seen to poetry slam in our industry is the idea of barcamp. A big room with people and every person stands up at some point and talks about something they are passionate about. Never been to one but hearsay has it it’s pretty powerful, fun and insightful. Choatic and random way of knowledge sharing I suppose but one that sticks as it is personal and passionate. Like to try it out.

There is also this internal idea around of having an ideas farm as concept to foster innovation. The concept is: Create innovative ideas for the company, pitch for them in 6 minute long pecha kucha style and let the audience decide which ones to persue (or not). Here we have the competition we’ve seen in slam. The ideas farm follows the purpose of integrating innovation into our worklife and make it happen. Is is passionate and personal? Not necessarily as we have the issues of ownership of ideas and the problem of who’s taking the idea further and in which frame. How can you be personal and passionate if ownership isn’t clear and success equals the gain of an unknown amount of additinional work to fit into a busy schedule? Does personal and passionate not belong to innovation?



  1. Me and some mates used to organise poetry slams in Liverpool. It was called Poets Get Paid. Wicked nights. Even won a round or two way back when.

    They are high energy, provide a great way for lots of people to make their voices heard, and provide for instant feedback.

    Comment by Stephen Hellens — October 5, 2007 @ 12:26 pm

  2. Love the idea (as envisaged in my head) of a group of people (us LBi types) getting togther and then individuals just standing up , delivering some ‘words’ that describe an idea, voice an opinion, air a criticism…whatever…and then sitting down again. Just airing things/thoughts. In a real people environment.

    Maybe it sparks debate – maybe nothing is ever said about it again. Doesn’t matter.

    I like this. It’s kind of a jazz ‘Roundtable’. Maybe we could have a jazz roundtable every other week?

    P.S. I think – in view of the email about the ladies toilets last week – that all future talk of Skat should be avoided.

    Comment by neil — October 5, 2007 @ 4:27 pm

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