Kate’s Professional Biography
Kate Hammer co-invented IdeaKeg, a 3-D magazine on trends and cultural shifts in 2010-2011. In 2012, she created storyFORMing, a visual thinking tool to complement the Business Model and Lean Canvases. She consults, coaches and works with in-house teams to create new products, processes and initiatives. Peers recognise Kate’s contributions to conversations about innovation and workplace creativity, naming her a Top 40 Innovation Blogger 4 years running.
IdeaKeg is a tool for problem-framing and idea generation.
Thanks to the passion of its adopters and advocates, IdeaKeg has travelled far. USA’s #1 engineering undergraduate college embedded IdeaKeg beginning in 2015. IdeaKeg featured in Trend-Driven Innovation (Wiley, 2015). An American Association of Engineering Educators Annual Conference (2016) session focused on IdeaKeg. So did a poster at the 2015 American Psychological Association Annual Conference.
From 2013, the precursor of the iVia executive education curriculum at Notre Dame University began featuring IdeaKeg and its underlying problem-framing method. IThe world’s two largest consumer goods companies have used IdeaKeg. Whirlpool Corporation gave IdeaKeg a formal testimonial. Under strict confidentiality rules, top-tier manufacturers adopted IdeaKeg. When Rotman School of Management lacked a supervisor on an EMBA practicum calling for true blue-sky thinking, Kate brought IdeaKeg & led a strategy session for the client Solidwear, a leading contract manufacturer of Canada Goose coats. The session won high praise from an observer, the CIO of Canadian Innovation Centre who is also an industry advisor to CBC’s Dragon’s Den TV show.
storyFORMing is a tool for concept creation, concept elaboration, acceptance-finding and rolling evaluation.
storyFORMing has featured at leading international conferences including ESOMAR Qualitative Research Annual Conference 2016, UCD16, ISPIM 2016, ICOT 2015, CSPI 2015 & 2014, and Shoppers Insights 2012. Kate has also shared it at a raft of smaller UK events.
Entrepreneurial individuals and teams have applied storyFORMing to their articulate their visions. In Q4 2016, a leading national utility company pivoting to a post-fossil fuel era start applying storyFORMing to their brand redefinition. Currently, Kate is using this story design process to prepare the launch of a privately funded UK-based global startup using machine learning, robotic process automation and API integration to transform fraud and money laundering risk detection.
The storyFORMing framework codifies work Kate began as a core team member 2000-2004 building the category-creating software company Legion, which has successfully transformed how complex pedestrian environments are planned and operated through changing how architects and engineers design. This fostered Kate’s interest in architecture that has led to some interesting collaborations, most recently in late 2016 working with an award-winning education/healthcare architect on future-proofing his practice. Together, they have been invited to present a practical workshop on spatial design in higher education at the 2017 University-Industry Interaction Conference.
About building capabilities
IdeaKeg and storyFORMing promote learning-by-doing. Kate views this as the best culture change intervention possible, because it combines usefulness and fun.
Also, Kate teaches collaborative problem solving in settings as varied as Harper Collins UK, Cambridge University’s Judge Business School and to the faculty and senior leadership of Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in the USA.
On an as-needed basis, Kate helps an entrepreneur building The Bird Table to support women CEOs and business owners; and the Executive Producer of The Green Exchange, a new-generation media channel in Europe focused on environmental sustainability. She coaches individual entrepreneurs and executives, face-to-face and on Skype.
Creating new things
In December 2016, literary agency A.M. Heath signed Kate expecting a non-fiction manuscript in 2017.
In her pro bono work, Kate spearheaded This One’s 4 Ruby (2010-2012) and is the volunteer lead of #NoDust.
Conversation is her hobby and in her spare time she tweets #6wordstories.
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