I am finishing a book based on my dissertation research of high quality leadership programs. The purpose of the book is to help people innovate their own leadership programs and teach leadership in a way that works with how people learn and develop as a leader. I spent a lot of time thinking about titles for the book. Then I decided to use an innovation process for this. I decided to co-create the title with my target audience, the people who would be buying and reading the book. It makes sense doesn’t it, let them develop the title they want with you. I created a two question surveymonkey survey and floated it to my network on Facebook through a status update.
I have a number of friends who are the target audience-leadership educators. I received a number of responses, great ideas, and direction validation from this super short survey. It also prompted me to do more research on what makes a great non-fiction book title. I developed more ideas based on this research and the insight I received from my target audience. Next, I did a second and a third short two question survey to help them co-develop, narrow in, and select the title.
Lesson I learned: Use innovation practices for anything that is important…like a book title. Quick practices like engaging your target audience in co-creation, co-development, and selection work and they motivate you to do important research, idea generation, and iteration to develop a better idea. You uncover the problems and opportunities that can make your creation more innovative through doing this! This is a valuable way to use free web tools like surveymonkey in conjunction with social network status updates on sites like Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.