How did I end up an open innovation problem solver ?


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The scene in Wien with Salieri’s inner thoughts when he was walking in the crowd trying to spot the genius young musician that everybody was talking about, Mozart – slowly invaded my mind and never left it.

He wrote his first concerto at the age of 4, his first symphony at 7, a full scale opera at 12. Did it show? A talent like that shouldn’t be at the face? Which one of them could he be?”

As a problem solver you might better understand the meaning of these words.

What’s your story as open innovation player? When did you start? How? Why? What makes you keep walking on this path?

Which one of the crowd are you?

We invite you to join the first thread on openOI discussion board: What made you fly to open innovation? Or was it a push?

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This is how our first thread on openOI.com sounds – an information sharing and collaborative platform for open innovation problem solvers and for all creative and innovative people who have a problem or a project and need bright minds for advising, sharing their insights and uplift the quality of the overall idea and approach.

The beauty of open innovation and crowd sourcing reflected also on this unique project where 3 multi-awards winning problem solvers living in different places in the world (USA, India and Romania) were driven by same thoughts and aspirations and met on a common territory by deciding to create the openOI.com. The Romanian character from this new film is me.

My story

funie

Performance was never an option. My whole life depended on it.

In my case it was a push. A damn violent push that made me fly. Like any respectable flyer, I crashed at first. I hit some deep hell bottoms so bad, that I totally disintegrated, dissolved.

I always struggled inside with the thoughts of how to help people and organizations in solving their problems and challenges, but my hard working and struggling life as an entrepreneur in Romania didn’t let me breath. The more I grew the company…the far I was going from my dreams and inner flows, paradoxically.

After 5 years of daring and innovative playing, things started to finally work well. I didn’t have any second to enjoy that “well” as it all crashed. An ambush of criminal actions happened all at once coming from all sides, both offline and online environments ….and in less than 6 months all my life and work collapsed. I lost almost everything, I drowned myself in debts, problems and trials in court. The unique challenge remained was to not loose also myself.

During all this time I fought for justice and truth, for recovering the prejudices that my opponents caused my company, and automatically me. It took another 6 years to clean the mess, to prove in the court of law the frauds, to hardly and insanely negotiate online with completely unknown and invisible people. I’m still writing this MBA equivalent story’s final chapter.

There’s no business school able to teach me what real life, people and business did. But what’s most important is that there’s a rare study case like mine because conventionally, business people cash their dividends from profits, while I cashed my dividends from proving frauds, recovering prejudices and insolvency procedure of the company – form turning crisis into opportunities.

It’s damn hard to fight and win against villains by not breaking the law and rules. I went on borderlines a few times, entered some grey areas, I might have skidded at times…but I’ve never crossed the lines of legality and morality. I played very unconventional – as it was my only chance in the context, not only to survive them, but also to win against them…and against also my dark sides as they are the mostly challenged during such times. And yes, I played hard.

Moving forward in the face of adversity is one of the hardest things in life.

In 2010, left without nothing but my old slow laptop …I was sitting in my mother’s small red city car in a gas station’s parking lot, wondering “Now what? Where to? How?”.  I got out of my car, entered the gas station, ordered a coffee and connected to their free wi-fi network. I was absolutely sure that somewhere on this planet, someone must have created a paid online problem solving platform …as the world and organizations were facing too many problems while companies heads were too far from performance. I start searching and this is how I find Innocentive – the paid on performance US problem solving platform. So I started to solve profit, non-profit and governmental worldwide organization’s problems that they launched in this open innovation platform.

My first awarded solution came very fast and was in the healthcare industry – a concept for an online platform and sourcing food data bases for diabetics. The second award came 3 years later – a tech application concept for humanizing banking terminals like ATM, POS, internet banking, mobile banking (humanizing customer digital experience). In both cases, I competed with over 400 solutions from all overs the world.

The money was a symbol in both cases comparing to the real value of the concepts, nothing that could solve my life and business problems…but enough to cover me for a while and push me forward, lianas that helped me reach tomorrow and new shores.

In present

I am connecting dots in order to spot and grab more work opportunities and to create new opportunities – as people like me are expected to create jobs and solutions and not to need one. 

I love being involved in the creation and development of the very unconventional openOI and I try my best to uplift people and organizations with my skills and knowledge each time I have or I am being offered the opportunity while I keep learning and pushing to unknown jungles.

I never stopped solving problems. Hope to never will.