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Phil McKinney Book Talk & Signing: Beyond the Obvious

Generating and executing great ideas is the key to staying ahead in a rapidly changing world. It seems so basic. Why is it so hard to actually get right? According to innovation expert Phil McKinney, the real problem is that we’re teaching people to ask the wrong questions about their businesses-or none at all. There has to be a better way.


Join us at TechShop San Francisco for an evening with Phil as he talks about his new book "Beyond the Obvious" and his proven FIRE (Focus, Ideation, Rank, Execution) Method to dig deeper and get back to asking the right questions-the ones all companies must ask to survive. Full of real-world examples, this book will change the way you operate, innovate, and create, and it all begins with battle-tested questions Phil has gathered on note cards throughout his career. Shared for the first time here, these “Killer Questions” include:

  • What are the rules and assumptions my industry operates under?
  • What if the opposite were true?
  • What will be the buying criteria used by my customer in five years?
  • What are my unshakable beliefs about what my customers want?
  • Who uses my product in ways I never anticipated?

These questions will reframe the way you see your products, your customers, and the way the two interact. Whether you’re a company of thousands or a lean startup, Beyond the Obvious will give you the skills and easy-to-follow plan you need to make both the revolutionary changes and nuanced tweaks required for success.

This event is open to everyone, members and non-members but please be sure to R.S.V.P. so that we know you are coming!

Phil McKinney, an Innovation Consultant, has held innovation leadership positions in a number of companies, most recently as the Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for Hewlett-Packard’s (HP) $40B Personal Systems Group, where he was responsible for long-range strategic planning and research and development for all of the company’s PC product lines, including mobile devices (phones, tablets, etc), notebooks, desktops, and workstations. A sought after keynote speaker, McKinney gives over 100 talks or workshops a year.

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  • A former member
    A former member

    Was an interesting and informative talk. I really appreciate that the books were available at below retail. I bought one and have started reading it.

    March 25, 2012

  • Doug / I.

    Wouldn't call it a "meetup" from what we normally expect, because the focus was on Phil and his observations about innovation honed over many years of first hand experience. Nonetheless, enjoyable and learned something.

    Phil is clearly offering his pearls of wisdom from an altruistic position. A man with his background certainly doesn't need the income from book sales. And, he generously stayed long after the formal part of the discussion to answer individual questions.

    Phil, if you're reading this, because I do a lot of walking, I'll be getting the audiobook version.

    With appreciation,
    Doug Chew
    Oakland, CA

    March 24, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Good speaker, lots of insights to big corporation-think & how to avoid lock-step thinking.

    March 24, 2012

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