“A world filled with innovation capability and innovators is a much more hopeful world.” – John Kao
Many have said that the spa and wellness industry is seriously lacking in innovation and needs some spark. So, the Global Spa & Wellness Summit would like to bring you a new – and hopefully innovative way – to ignite the conversation!
Meet “The Weekender.”
This weekly communication is designed to start one conversation about one topic with the entire global spa and wellness universe. For the time being, we’ll be zeroing in on the topics of Innovation and Imagination.
- All content is linked to a blog, where you can join the conversation by posting comments and sharing ideas (which is most definitely encouraged).
- And, for a taste of things to come, look for a comparison of the world’s “most innovative” countries and companies, views from expert innovators, a few TED presentations on the topic, advice on how to grow our individual imaginative skillsets, and a general spotlight on what people are writing and saying about innovation right now. (No one can deny that “innovation “ and “imagination” are hot topics making headlines!)
Earlier this morning, I spoke with John Kao, the author of Innovation Nation and a confirmed keynote speaker at the upcoming Global Spa & Wellness Summit taking place in Aspen, Colorado. Here are a few things from my research and our conversation that caught my attention:
- John calls himself an “Innovation Activist”
- In this interview, which I encourage you to read, he defines “innovation” and explains why it is so important for the future of our world: “I define innovation as a set of capabilities that are possessed by individuals, teams, countries or geographies that allow the continuous realization of a desired future.”
- John’s book Innovation Nation includes an analysis of which countries can be considered the most innovative (hint, think Singapore and Finland) and he talks about the need to innovate the very “process of innovation,” which I find extremely interesting.
- In a recent NY Times article about his “performance and talk” at the recent World Economic Forum in Davos, they mentioned John’s use of Jazz music to demonstrate the tension in the innovation process between training/discipline and improvised creativity that always fuels new ideas and products.
- His unique perspective is likely a result of his very eclectic background that includes a degree in philosophy from Yale College, an MD in psychiatry from Yale University and a degree from Harvard Business School in management. He is also a Tony nominated film producer and a jazz pianist who studied under Frank Zappa.
- Oh, and did I mention he loves spas?
Doing things differently is what innovation is all about. Just as I was inspired by John, I hope that you will be motivated – by this email – to join the conversation on how this industry could benefit from true innovation and a healthy dose of imagination. Or sit back, relax with a cup of coffee (or herbal tea) and just be a sponge. After all it is the weekend. What better time to soak up something new?
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