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Our Mission:  

To change the world through systems that enable everyone to think smarter, faster & more innovatively.

Since 1986, when we founded Eureka! Ranch, we’ve been applying innovative thinking, systems and tools with some of the world’s most progressive companies.  In 2006, through a joint-venture partnership with the University of Maine, we formed the Innovation Engineering Institute.  It is the certifying body for academic and professional courses and the R&D source for “innovating on innovation.”

In the 90s, before “innovation” was the buzz word, we were working with corporate teams to apply innovative thinking & tools to a critical business challenge.

History

Born out of Frustration.  Inspired by the Power of People.

The idea for the Innovation Engineering Institute, Field of Academic Study and Leadership Science was sparked by Eureka! Ranch founder, Doug Hall, on a 5 hour drive from his home in Springbrook Prince Edward Island, Canada to the University of Maine in Orono, Maine.

Doug was visiting campus to receive an award as an outstanding Chemical Engineering alumnus. He was extremely frustrated during the drive. He was coming off a series of Eureka! Inventing projects with multi-national corporations where the best ideas were shelved – and sub optimized selected – because of a lack of confidence in the client company’s ability to execute true innovations.

At a stop for gas Doug scribbled down the name Innovation Engineering, meaning in effect “the science of applied innovation.” Basically it’s “how to” innovate. As an example, the study of “Chemistry” is about molecules and theory.  “Chemical Engineering” is about application of those molecules and theory in the real world.

As he drove further, he began to think about what the content would be. His first conclusion was simple – the need to approach innovation as a system of interconnected parts. Systems thinking was the foundation of Doug’s life. It was how he had shipped a record 9 innovations in 12 months at Procter & Gamble as the leader of the P&G Invention Team. It was also what his father M. Bradford Hall had taught him from his pioneering work with Dr. W. Edwards Deming – the legend that reinvented Japan after World War II and the western world’s approach to building quality, cost efficient products.

Next he very roughly defined 6 Innovation Engineering (IE) courses:

  1. IE FUNDAMENTALS – An overview of how to create, communicate and commercialize ideas
  2. IE Advanced CREATE – A deep dive into every validated creativity and problem solving system
  3. IE Advanced COMMUNICATE – A deep dive into persuasively gaining engagement by others
  4. IE Advanced COMMERCIALIZE – a deep dive into how to go from idea to reality
  5. IE SYSTEM LEADERSHIP – How to diagnose and reinvent human work systems
  6. IE REAL WORLD – Direct hands on application of the learning

When he reached the University of Maine, Doug was beside himself with excitement. Fortunately, the University President Bob Kennedy along with Hemant Pedse, Renee Kelly and Jake Ward connected on the vision. And thus the idea for the Innovation Engineering Institute and new field of study was born.

Within a year, the first classes were taught, receiving very positive reactions. Concurrently, the Eureka! Ranch team led by Maggie Nichols began conversations with corporations about the need for executive education. The reaction was as positive as on campus. And thus a unique academic / industry collaboration was born.

Courses were developed and refined. A set of on-line tools for creating, doing research quickly, writing patents, gaining strategic alignment, improving ideas, and even doing risk adjusted forecasting were created. Later as projects became complex, a new form of project management was crafted that enabled never ending innovation during projects with Fail FAST Fail CHEAP cycles of learning as they became to be called.

 

 

Never-Ending Continuous R&D
on the Creative Art & Applied Science
of Innovative Thinking

(Yes, we know that’s redundant, but that’s how much we mean it!)
We’ve “innovated on innovation” since our inception, spending over $25M in R&D. 
Nothing we teach is theory.  Every skill and tool has been applied to live challenges for Fortune 500 companies. 

Recent Innovation R&D Accomplishments

We believe that  any good innovation firm should be able to answer the question, “What innovations have you shipped in your own industry?  How are you different than you were 3 years ago?”  Below are a list of innovations, breakthroughs and original R&D we’ve pioneered in the field of innovation.

NUMBER ONE IN THE WORLD

The demand for a smarter and faster innovation system is so great that Innovation Engineering has taken off.  Here are the numbers:

  • Innovations worth $19 billion in net marketplace value in active development.
  • Over 35,000 trained
  • Over 50 Innovation Engineering Network partners – colleges, universities and consultancies. 
  • Thought leading companies that have contributed data and insights to the movement include: Procter & Gamble, Walmart, Toyota Manufacturing, Nestle, Walt Disney, Nike, American Express, Ford Motor Company, and thousands of others.

THE WORLD'S FIRST VALIDATED METRICS SYSTEM FOR INNOVATION

Modeling innovation metrics can be tricky because there are so many unknowns.  Innovation Engineering metrics actually incorporate that variation to create models so predictive Jim Filliben of the National Institute of Standards and Technology presented a paper validating the approach.  

    INVENTED & VALIDATED A SYSTEM THAT IS 500% MORE EFFECTIVE THAN BRAINSTORMING

    The Stimulus Response® method makes it easy for anyone to create innovative solutions to their daily challenges and business problems.

      INVENTED & VALIDATED AN IDEA DECISION SYSTEM THAT IS 7X SMARTER THAN HUMANS

      Merwyn Rapid Research® research provides data grounded principles for improving odds of success plus a quantitative assessment that tells you the true odds of success. 

        THE WORLD'S FIRST 5 YEAR FINANCIAL FORECAST FOR INNOVATION

        Using a blend of Fourt Woodlock & Bass Diffusion models, the 5 Year Life Cycle model can predict sales over 5 years & the impact of diffusion on word-of-mouth.

          VALIDATED - INCREASED INNOVATION SPEED (UP TO 6X) AND DECREASED RISK (UP TO 10X SUCCESS)

          Step change improvement in innovation metrics is a result of transitioning from a “guru” model for innovation to enabling innovation by everyone through applying System Driven Innovation® principles of Dr. W. Edwards Deming.

            THE WORLD'S FIRST APPLICATION OF "PLAN, DO, STUDY, ACT" INTO INNOVATION PROJECT MANAGEMENT

            Deming’s Plan, Do, Study, Act method for never-ending improvement goes beyond principle.  The Innovation Engineering Labs Project Management tool makes “PDSA” a built in part of the work process, ensuring that learning & documentation are natural parts of every innovation project.

              INVENTED & VALIDATED A TEACHING SYSTEM THAT IS 200 TO 400% MORE EFFECTIVE WITH ADULTS

              Patent-pending Cycles to Mastery® enables everyone who is willing to achieve mastery. 
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              VALIDATED AS "BREAKOUT INNOVATION SYSTEM” BY STANFORD

              A team of Stanford researchers found that most “innovation methods” don’t actually result in innovative solutions.  Most simply result in “innovation as usual.”    They found that Innovation Engineering went beyond “Innovation-as-Usual” to true Breakout Innovation – out performing even IDEO.

              TRANSFORMED INNOVATION FROM A RANDOM GAMBLE TO A RELIABLE SYSTEM

              The Innovation Engineering field of study transforms innovation into a real science.  It’s grounded in the world’s largest database of quantitative data on innovation – over 26,000 innovations, deep data on 15,000 teams, over $19 billion in innovations as they go from raw idea to reality.

              THE FIRST COMPLETE SYSTEM THAT DRIVES A 72% INCREASE IN NET INNOVATION VALUE

              Unlike others that are front end driven, Innovation Engineering goes all the way to reality.  The result is ideas grow in value all through development instead of declining. (Leading organizations cite “normal” development systems make innovation values decrease 50% or more.)

              Our Leadership & Key Development Team

              While our key leadership and development team is small, our community is large - and they are the energy source, sounding board and inspiration for the future direction and development work to support this movement.  With nearly 100 people from across industries and the world serving on our Jump Start Your Brain Advisory Board, we work to constantly be relevant for meeting the demands of today's fast paced world and pioneering the future of innovation, one person at a time.

              Maggie Nichols

              Maggie Nichols

              CEO & President - Innovation Engineering Institute & Eureka! Ranch - INNOVATION ENGINEERING BLACK BELT

               Innovation Engineering Black Belt

               

               

               

              Doug Hall

              Doug Hall

              Founder & Chairman - Innovation Engineering Institute, Eureka! Ranch. CEO - Brain Brew Custom Whisk(e)y

               Innovation Engineering Black Belt
              Honorary Doctorate, University of Maine

               

               

              Renee Kelly

              Renee Kelly

              Director, Innovation Engineering institute & University of Maine Foster Center for Student Innovation

               Innovation Engineering Black Belt
              Masters, Interdisciplinary Studies

               

               

              John Ferris

              John Ferris

              President - Innovation Engineering Network Canada. CEO - InVision Edge

              Innovation Engineering Black Belt

               

               

              Maggie Pfeifer

              Maggie Pfeifer

              VP of Education, Innovation Engineering Institute

              Innovation Engineering Black Belt

               

               

              Brad Hall

              Brad Hall

              Education Brand Manager, Innovation Engineering Institute

              Innovation Engineering Black Belt
              Masters, Educational Administration

               

               

              Scott Dunkle

              Scott Dunkle

              VP of Technology, Innovation Engineering Institute

              Innovation Engineering Black Belt

               

               

              Greg Lemmon

              Greg Lemmon

              Lead Statistician, Innovation Engineering Institute

               Innovation Engineering Black Belt

               

               

              David Lafkas

              David Lafkas

              Patent Attorney & General Counsel, Innovation Engineering Institute & Eureka! Ranch

              Innovation Engineering Black Belt

               

               

              Lydia Carson

              Lydia Carson

              VP of Innovation Engineering Systems, Innovation Engineering Institute & Eureka! Ranch

              Innovation Engineering Black Belt
              Six Sigma Black Belt
              Masters, Business Administration

               

               

              In Good Company

              100’s of companies have used these skills and tools to think smarter, faster and more innovatively.  Here are a few you might recognize.

              Ready to get started?

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