I read the term « Cross-pollinator » for the first time in a great book written by californian-design-firm-IDEO-founder Tom Kelley : The ten faces of innovation – Strategies for heightening creativity (2006).

This book is about « how people and teams put into practice methods and techniques that infuse an enterprise with a continuous spirit of creative evolution ». Among the 10 types of people a company needs to strengthen its creativity is the cross-polinator.

Cross-pollinators are an « essential part of the ecosystem of innovation ». They are good students but good teachers as well and have a childlike ability to see patterns others don’t see and they can apply them in new contexts.

What makes a cross-polinator?

Cross-pollinators can create something new and better through the unexpected juxtaposition of seemingly unrelated ideas or concepts. They often innovate by discovering a clever solution in one context or industry then translating it successfully to another.

Cross-pollinators stir-up new ideas by exploring worlds that may at first glance seem to have little relevance to the problem at hand. Actually, this is one of the key-points experimented by participants during « Learning Expeditions ».

How to recognise Cross-pollinators in your company?

  • They often think in metaphors, enabling them to see relationships and connections that others miss. They act as matchmakers, creating unusual combinations, approachs, that often spark innovative hybrids.
  •  They are Multifaceted, known as « T-shaped » individuals : they enjoy a breadth of knowledge [empathy accross disciplines] in many fields, but they also have depth [deep knowledge] in at least one area of expertise. They defy simple categorization, but don’t let that bother your.
  • They don’t fear scarcity. « Necessity is the mother of invention » : scarcity and tough constraints force you to be innovative. They know how to challenge a team to come up with something on the cheap.
  • They are confident that diverse and interesting projects work can fuel the fire of a culture of innovation. Like linguists : the more languages they master, the easier it becomes to absorb the next one.
  • They are open-minded : they are receptive and know that success can come from the most unlikely of all directions.
  • They are Boomerang staffers »: Independent, they might work for a company for a while, go out and get broad experience elsewhere, ant then come back. Give them a chance to find some fertile soil and you won’t regret it!
  • They tirelessly spreads the seeds of innovation : they have wide interests, voracious curiosity, and an aptitude for learning and teaching.

For your company, it is hence essential to learn how to flower cross-pollination!


To know more about The 10 Faces of Innovation by Tom Kelley


Tagged with:

Explorateurs, cross-pollinators et curieux d’innovation, venez expérimenter un espace de coaching collectif, collaboratif et inspirant! Il reste encore 1 place pour le groupe du 18 décembre 2012.
Tous les détails ci-dessous.
Coaching Lab-2012-2013

Tagged with:

A la Claire Fontaine

Tagged with:

La musique nous révèle où nous vibrons : se laisser vibrer, c’est entendre là où en nous « ça » résonne, et laisser émerger, peu à peu, les ressentis, ceux-là mêmes enfouis dans la caverne de notre histoire profonde.

Dans le documentaire de Bruce Weber « Let’s Get Lost » (2008) , Chet Baker, peu de temps avant de mourir, se laisse vibrer en interprétant « Imagination ».


Imagination is funny

It makes a cloudy day sunny

Makes a bee think of honey

Just as I think of you


Imagination is crazy

Your whole perspective gets hazy

Starts you asking a daisy

« What to do, what to do? »


Have you ever felt

A gentle touch, and then a kiss

And then, and then

Find it’s only your imagination, again

Oh well


Imagination is silly

You go around willy-nilly

For example I go around wanting you

Yet I can’t imagine you want me too


Tagged with:

« A quel chant donner sa part de voix? » , écrit le poète haïtien Lyonel Trouillot.

Ildo Lobo (1953-2004) est l’un des plus grands chanteurs cap-verdiens de « morna », musique nostalgique et plaintive née au XIXe siècle au Cap-Vert pour chanter « la partida », le départ des migrants.

Ildo Lobo interprête ici « Cretcheu Maguode »:

Tagged with:

Benjamin Zander is  is the conductor of The Boston Philharmonic Orchestra. On music and passion is his fantastic, famous Ted talk :

Tagged with:

« L’idée de dépassement m’intéresse. Mais quand je suis sur scène, je ne suis pas dans la démonstration technique, je cherche à rendre concrètement ce que j’entends dans ma tête. Si techniquement je suis limité et que je ne peux pas transcrire immédiatement dans les doigts ce qui me vient, je suis malheureux. Alors là, il faut travailler, s’y remettre. Pas pour en foutre plein la vue, juste pour arriver à réaliser ses propres idées. »
Michel Portal, Jazz Magazine/Jazzman, n°619, novembre 2010.

Tagged with:

HBR Blog Network

Why have you been so successful in reaching some of your goals, but not others? If you aren’t sure, you are far from alone in your confusion. It turns out that even brilliant, highly accomplished people are pretty lousy when it comes to understanding why they succeed or fail. The intuitive answer — that you are born predisposed to certain talents and lacking in others — is really just one small piece of the puzzle. In fact, decades of research on achievement suggests that successful people reach their goals not simply because of who they are, but more often because of what they do.

1. Get specific. When you set yourself a goal, try to be as specific as possible. « Lose 5 pounds » is a better goal than « lose some weight, » because it gives you a clear idea of what success looks like. Knowing exactly what you want to achieve keeps you motivated until you get there. Also, think about the specific actions that need to be taken to reach your goal. Just promising you’ll « eat less » or « sleep more » is too vague — be clear and precise. « I’ll be in bed by 10pm on weeknights » leaves no room for doubt about what you need to do, and whether or not you’ve actually done it.

Lire la suite sur le blog de la Harvard Business Review

Tagged with:

“Experiential learning is a teaching and learning process that combines direct experience that is meaningful to the student with guided reflection and analysis. It is challenging, active and student centered and immerses students in opportunities for taking initiative, responsibility and decision making. It is a holistic approach to learning that connects the head with the body, heart, spirit and soul. Traditional academic approaches to education focus primarily on the intellectual development of the individual while experiential education methods focus on the whole person” (Kolb)

The below article about the gain of experiential learning was written by Kim Lamoureux and published in the review Leadership Experience on October, 10. 2009.

« Experiential Learning. Make it the core of the Leadership program. » by Kim Lamoureux

LEADERS PARTICIPATE IN many training activities—workshops, online courses, assessments, coaching—to prepare for real-world challenges. Mastery, however, demands experience; hence, companies have to facilitate and accelerate a person’s ability to gain experience. Organizations that offer experiential learning (EL) enable leaders to master something by applying learning and receiving feedback.

Lire la suite »

Tagged with:

Fondé en 1988 en Californie par Pascal Baudry (ingénieur Civil, Licencié ès-Lettres, diplômé MBA, docteur en Psychologie, et de formation psychanalytique), WDHB Consulting Group est le leader des Learning Expeditions avec lequel nous collaborons en tant que coach facilitateur.

Crédits : www.wdhb.com/fr

La Learning Expedition
C’est un parcours structuré et sur-mesure réunissant souvent pendant une semaine un groupe de 12 à 35 dirigeants ou cadres supérieurs dans un pays étranger afin de travailler sur des problématiques variées et des compétences clés.

Ce séminaire itinérant inclut des visites d’entreprises, des présentations thématiques par des experts, des ateliers de travail quotidiens visant l’intégration progressive des pratiques observées (transposabilité) et des activités diverses (team building) venant enrichir ce parcours et un atelier final de synthèse et de décision pour ébaucher un plan d’action.

S’inspirer pour inspirer
C’est avant tout une formidable source d’inspiration et de renouveau pour les équipes dirigeantes européennes. Au travers de ses Learning Expeditions, toujours conçues sur mesure, WDHB permet aux participants Lire la suite »

Tagged with: