4. Getting Unstuck: Conducting an External Assessment with Carl Fengler

In this episode, we explore how innovators can prepare themselves for success by studying the external environment that could become the home for their product or service.

Getting Unstuck co-host Kirsten Richert interviews Dr. Esmilda Abreu, Vice-President for Student Affairs at Pratt Institute and Carl Fengler who runs the Ignition Lab at Pratt Institute.

Listen for:

• Why innovators / organization leaders need to pause to understand the external environment.

• How humility - admitting that “I can learn” – frees innovators to be open to change and encourages curiosity.

• Why it’s important to tap into what and who you can connect with on an idea.

• How to take an assessment of what you have – or don’t have – to support your idea.

• Why being vulnerable, and embracing imperfection and risks are actually positive innovation qualities.

• Why it’s important to assess the competition and be willing to scaffold on existing ideas.

After listening to the episode:

  1. Being adaptable – open to change – is an essential quality for developers. Assess your adaptability by rating yourself on a scale of 0 (not at all) to 7 (highly). How adaptable do you feel you are? What’s your evidence behind the number?

  2. The guest speakers argued that understanding who you can serve and focusing on meeting underserved needs are critical considerations for innovators. Make the case that doing so doesn’t need to be the starting point for your work.

Jeff Ikler