Word on the street

 Look around, not just forward

Look around, not just forward

How many times have you been in a familiar place and noticed something (that’s always been there) for the very first time? Perhaps you’ve walked down the same street on your way home for years but one day notice an interesting building set back from the road. You then notice that building every other time you walk past.

Our lives are so busy – we rush from one place to another, from one task to another, that we rarely stop to think about what we are doing, whether it is the right way of doing it or whether there is a better thing to be doing altogether. We don’t allow ourselves to become distracted from what is around us.

I recently took part in a brilliant outdoor innovation workshop called Street Wisdom. It encouraged the participants to slow down, observe and think about what is around us – to use our environment as a source of inspiration for thinking differently and tacking questions that might have previously proved difficult to solve.

I went to the workshop with a question that had been stuck in my head for a while. When I left, my head was buzzing with new ideas.

A workshop such as Street Wisdom might seem, to some, like a luxury – taking three hours out of your day to indulge your mind. However, breaking routine and giving you (or your team) opportunity to see/think differently is the key to successful innovation – something I think charities would particularly benefit from.

Street Wisdom is a social enterprise with a mission to bring inspiration to every street on earth. You can find out more about it and the next free sessions HERE.

Sources of earned income

There are some great blogs and papers on social business models, including MaRS (not the confectionary brand) and The Sedge but quite a lot of what I have found presents the ideas as lists.

My mind has a natural tendency to try to organise and cluster information and compartmentalise so I have tried to have a go at mapping things in out in a way that make sense to me.

I hope that it makes sense to you.

I have a couple of caveats:

  • This is a starting point. I’d love to get your thoughts on how I’ve grouped them and what I might have missed.
  • I’m sorry about the design - PowerPoint is the absolute limits of my design/artworking capabilities


What do you think?

Tom.barratt@frodas.uk