A Year of Harvest, a Day of Thanks

A Year of Harvest, a Day of ThanksIn August, Innovation Excellence marked its first birthday and now three months later, Thanksgiving Day feels like the right moment to express some heartfelt thanks. As many remember, this global innovation community did not spring forth overnight, but grew from the efforts of Braden Kelley, and all of you who embraced Blogging Innovation.  Braden’s site was a labor of love and as we’ve built it together, up and out, into the platform Innovation Excellence — there is much to be thankful for.

Amazing isn’t it what tiny seeds and big ideas together can do?  Not just here, but all around us. The seasonal metaphors of seeding, working, tilling, towing, even praying for a yield…a new harvest…or a better way to do what we do,  is what innovating has always been about.

We choose many words to describe innovation — nearly 5,000 articles worth of your words to date (this is Innovation Excellence article no. 4972). As a writer and editor, I admit I love words. Meaningful, carefully chosen words. Insightful and evocative words.

A Year of Harvest, a Day of Thanks

Words that show and share your stories, ideas — reflections and revelations — about innovation at work, and innovation in the world. Hmmm, if I had to choose two words to put together that express innovating, I know what they would be: serious fun.

A Year of Harvest, a Day of ThanksI have never been inside P&G or 3M, but I’ve been inside national labs, universities, enterprise and organizations (large and small), and most recently “behind the curtain” at USAA’s innovation lab where serious fun was taking place —  from front to back end and the many timeframes in between. The beauty of innovation is that you know it when you see it. We feel it in our bones when we are a part of it. We can hold it in our hand…occasionally or often but not forever. The discipline of innovation are those perplexing nouns, inquisitive verbs, and formative adjectives that we practice, and it punctuates our days. We collaborate around it, compete with it, and are often wading through it.  Innovation can be lonely or enlivening and for all that it is, and is not, we are thankful.

A Year of Harvest, a Day of ThanksPersonally, I am so very grateful for our IX team of leaders and mentors for their intelligence, experience, humor and heart for getting us here, and for what remains unseen.

The real point of my message today is that we here because of you.

The Innovation Excellence global community represents 170 countries and the best part, from where I sit, is the fluidity of conversations, intersections, connections and drive that take Innovation Excellence from one day (one hour, one minute) to the next. Speaking of “next”, where we are headed as an innovation platform — your innovation platform — is what is most important.

One way of saying thanks to you, is to continue to value your input and continue to invite you to shape Innovation Excellence as we move forward. Frankly, we know that last year is nothing compared to what lies ahead and we want your help.  From exactly where you are and what you do, your opinions matter most in how and where we innovate and advance.

On behalf of Innovation Excellence’s executive creative team, this has been a great year of harvest.        –Our thanks to you.

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image credits: josie2shoes.com; haggardandhalloo.com, css-edge.com, colleencorby.net; creable.com; therockinl.com


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Mari AnixterMari Anixter is Managing Editor for Innovation Excellence. She is a communications professional living in New Mexico.

Mari Anixter




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  1. Paul Hobcraft on November 22, 2012 at 6:58 am

    On an important day to give thanks, the community you have built up around innovation continues to thrive with all the ideas, thoughts and ‘pearls of wisdom’ that you publish daily.

    I can’t image the hard work that goes into this site but I can “feel” the dedication and commitment that runs through it. i gain from that energy and activity simply by being able to come back to a site that continues to explore innovation, to offer unique views and freshen up all we need to consider.

    So simply thanks- enjoy your day, you deserve it like everyone else who values the importance of all thanksgivings- where ever they are held

  2. Joan Holman on November 22, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    Thank you so much Braden for starting this magnificent resource center and community and to the entire Innovation Excellence team, which continually impresses me by their dedication and hard work.

  3. Gijs van Wulfen on November 22, 2012 at 2:02 pm

    Thanks you for all your kinds words Mari, and for all the efforts of you, Braden, Dru and the whole IX team. It’s wonderful to be able to contribute to IX because it is a true continuous source of innovation inspiration for a lot of people around the world. Keep up the good work. And look back and enjoy what you all have accomplished 🙂

  4. Peter Doyle on November 22, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    Thanks to you Braden and the team this day, for giving us a platform from which to be heard

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