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#15—Tendayi Viki: Be a ‘Pirate in the Navy’ to Innovate Strategically

#15—Tendayi Viki: Be a ‘Pirate in the Navy’ to Innovate Strategically

Tendayi Viki is an author and corporate innovation expert. As Associate Partner at Strategyzer, he helps companies innovate for the future while managing their core business. He has written three books: Pirates In The Navy, The Corporate Startup and The Lean Product Lifecycle.

He previously served as Director of Product Lifecycle at Pearson, where he co-developed an innovation framework that won the Best Innovation Program 2015 at the Corporate Entrepreneur Awards in New York. Tendayi has been shortlisted for the Thinkers50 Innovation Award and was named on the Thinkers50 2018 Radar List for emerging management thinkers to watch. He is also a regular contributor at Forbes.

In this episode, Tendayi discusses with Kaihan why innovation has to follow strategy and how you can become a pirate in the Navy (or an employee entrepreneur) to create new innovative solutions.


"One of my pet peeves is when I meet heads of innovation and they say, 'My job is to let a thousand flowers bloom. There's no such thing as a bad idea.'and I just think that it sounds good in a sense that you want to democratize innovation, and yet it's very rare that I've ever found any innovation that is succeeded without some strategic connection."

-Tendayi Viki


Episode Timeline:

00:00—Introducing Tendaya Viki + The topic of today’s episode

1:20—If you really know me, you know that...

2:04—What is your definition of strategy?

3:07—What got you interested in strategy?

5:13—Which comes first—strategy or letting ideas bloom?

6:18—What would you say you're most known for?

8:15—What story best illustrates why your concept is so important?

9:47—Could you explain your concept of "Pirates in the Navy?"

12:09—What framework or idea has been most impactful for you?

12:56—What's your favorite framework or tool that you like to use?

14:40—What are you working on now?


Additional Resources:

Tendayi's Books

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The Outthinkers podcast is a growth strategy podcast hosted by Kaihan Krippendorff. Each week, Kaihan talks with forward-looking strategists and innovators that are challenging the status quo, leading the future of business, and shaping our world.