About me

I'm part of the full-time faculty at Carnegie Mellon University's Heinz College. I teach 
courses in innovation and communications, have also taught courses in strategy and in entrepreneurship, and regularly serve as a faculty advisor for student capstone projects. My projects have included the development of web metrics models for online marketing, an exploration of Second Life as a packaged goods marketing channel, a web personalization application for a major apparel manufacturer, creation of a crowdsourcing strategy for a major web services company, a look at the market potentials of The Internet of Things for a global leader in consumer goods, and many others.

Prior to joining the Carnegie Mellon faculty in 2003, my career focused on strategy, advertising, branding, and marketing, for such leading technology, financial services, packaged goods, and retail companies as Cisco, Cognos, Digital Equipment Corporation, Harris Semiconductor, Hanes Hosiery, Heinz USA, Mellon Financial, Nabisco Lifesavers, Nationwide Insurance, PNC Bank, Rockwell International, Victoria’s Secret, Westinghouse, and many others.

I've been Executive Vice President, Executive Creative Director at Ketchum Advertising, Vice President of Global Marketing at Development Dimensions International, a management consultant, a serial entrepreneur, and am a rabid startup groupie, working with such venture capital firms as Adams Capital, Draper Triangle Ventures, and Meakem Becker Venture Capital, and with founders and management teams at FreeMarkets (now part of Ariba), Blue Hammock, SEEC, CombineNet, and many other companies.

I also teach Executive Education classes for senior technologists through Carnegie Mellon’s CIO Institute.

My research interests focus on the social dynamics of innovation, the teaching of innovation concepts and skills, social innovation, workforce communication, and the impact of culture on strategy.

Like most of us, I try really hard to not suck. Sometimes I succeed, and sometimes students and others are nice enough to say so. I really hate that this is so self-serving, but below are some references for students who want to know what kind of course experience they'll have, and anyone else who is hoping that I'm not a jerk. If you must have more, see the recommendations on my LinkedIn page, and the gracious things some former clients have said in this site's Past Lives page.

"I am writing to thank you for teaching Professional Speaking. I really enjoyed your classes and had a lot of fun in it. But what I learned most from you was the energy and passion you bring to the class. I am always so excited after Speaking classes, and I'm always finding a friend to tell them what I learned from class that day! I love how you bring that atmosphere to others, and I hope I will also be good at that in the future. Thank you for letting me have such a great time while learning so much stuff from you. Professional Speaking was great!"
-- Ada Cheng, former student

"Thank you again for all your time and effort this semester.  I want you to know that I will always remember you as one of the best advisors I've had."
-- Christina Weng, former student

Just thought I’d let you know that three students came up to me (one from the first section and two from the second) after class and said that they LOVED your lecture. One of them said that he was never fully attentive for the entire length of a lecture in his life till this :-)."
-- Hasan Osman, former Teaching Assistant

"I'd like to take this opportunity to thank you for the two wonderful courses during this mini -- professional speaking and consulting communication. To tell the truth, I didn't expect to learn so much before I took the professional speaking class especially after four years of boring language classes in my undergraduate. :p But you totally changed my mind! The course is great and I realy learned a lot!!!  I really appreciate your effort on these two courses, and I'll definitely recommend it to my friends.(*^__^*)"
-- He (Crane) Jiang, former student

"Professional Speaking class is "MUST TAKE" class not only for Heinz school students but also all CMU graduate students."
-- Kyoung Rok (Archi) Kong, former student

"I truly enjoyed assisting you. Your knowledge of communication is quite amazing and I learned a lot about many aspects of business that I never knew needed improving. I can't wait to try many of your recommendations out on my colleagues..."
-- Andrew Cook, PhD., former Teaching Assistant

Every now and then I say or do something that shows up somewhere. This is incomplete, and I don't update it often enough, but it's a start:

"Innovation, Complexity, & Social Business" (Collaborative Innovation Blog)

"No Bosses: A Leadership Story" (TV documentary in which I intermittently comment on branding strategy)