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School for Innovators

Purpose Topics History Remarks

Why? Leadership through Innovation

The driving concept behind the School for Innovators is a vision of a network of highly motivated and unusually skilled in-house innovators - energized and dedicated to creating an environment for innovation, creativity, continuous improvement and positive change across their organizations.

The goal of the School is to transform people into thinking guides, able to guide groups into diffferent thinking, jumpstart new ideas, and mindshift teams into innovative change. Graduates return to become catalysts for faster, more effective translation of creative ideas into innovative solutions and bottom-line results to accelerate the pace of change.


The School for Innovators' format follows a particularly intense eight-day curriculum built on the model of an operational Thinking Expedition. The planned route integrates traditional small and large group facilitation tools with leadership skills, building on outdoors experiential learning. The School itself was conceived and has been developed through the process of customer-driven continuous innovation: Students, graduates, managers and sponsoring organizations provide a continuous flow of ideas for virtually real-time incorporation in the curriculum.

The School focuses on applying creativity to real problems within the environment of the students' own organizations. Ample time is spent in "hands-on " mode learning and practicing new skills.


Enrollment is normally limited to 20 participants. Nominations typically come from a wide range of organizations and corporations faced with large-scale change or a pressing need for "diffferent". Students set the focus for the curriculum of the School with real-world problems they bring with them. Using this work as a jumping off point, they develop strategies for innovation to take back and and put into practice immediately.

General Description

The School is intended to provide its graduates with a basic understanding and perspective of the concepts, terminology, processes and techniques associated with implementing innovation in large organizations. Supports for and barriers to innovation and creativity are explored, with emphasis on the issues and challenges around change, particularly large scale and technological change.

The linkages between thinking, ideas, creativity, invention and innovation are examined and Creative Problem Solving (CPS) models and techniques are covered in depth. Coupled with activity-based learning, the School is run on the model of a challenging operational Thinking Expedition.


The School for Innovators is normally held in Estes Park, Colorado, where we set up basecamp in the historic Elkhorn Lodge, one of the oldest continually operating hotels in the Colorado Rockies. The entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park is right up the road from the Elkhorn Lodge -- plan a few extra days at the end of the School for Innovators to explore.

However... the School for Innovators is a "school without walls" and can be transported almost anywhere. To accommodate corporate groups and teams the School has been held in Houston, Midland and Fredericksburg, Texas; in Charlotte and Eden, North Carolina; in Sydney and Melbourne, Australia; and in Auckland, New Zealand. To learn more about custom-designed Corporate Schools for Innovators, please complete a preliminary Corporate Planning Inquiry.


The School for Innovators is scheduled on a demand basis, driven by client organizations who see the need for in-house innovators and change agents who can energize project groups and teams into thinking and doing diffferently.


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