Seth Godin is one of my favorite authors. Tribes, the first business book I read after college, inspired me to become a leader; so I thought I’d give one of his earlier books, Free Prize Inside a try.
Free Prize Inside is divided into three sections:
- Why You Need a Free Prize
- Selling the Idea
- Creating the Free Prize
Seth argues that organizations need to be remarkable in order to survive; innovation is cheaper than advertising. The “free prize” is a soft innovation. Everybody within an organization can be champions of soft innovations which are the “clever, insightful, useful small ideas that just about anyone in an organization can think up.”
The second section of the book is dedicated to showing us how to keep our innovations alive by championing them and winning the support of others. If you work in a large organization, it’s important to get the buy-in of several departments before you take the idea to senior-level management. If you have internal support already, it’s easier for management to entertain your innovation.
The third section is dedicated to creating free prizes by listing organizations that have successfully employed soft innovations. This was the most interesting part of the book for me. Seth talks about developing a soft innovation and then taking it to the edge. He calls this process “edgecraft”. Netflix did it with movie rentals; Krispy Kreme did it with donuts.
How are you empowering your Tribe to create soft innovations? Can you take your organization to the “edge”?