New Lantern

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Light from the
New Lantern blog

Welcome to the New Lantern blog. Our goal is to shine light on leading innovators and creative artists, and how your business can learn and profit from them. Companies large, medium, and small can benefit from employees who think more creatively. New Lantern may be just the source of inspiration your company needs to spark more innovative products, services, and processes.


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What is a New Lantern?

Posted by on February 12, 2017 at 8:45 pm

Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary describes the word “lantern” as follows:

1. a usually portable protective case for a light with transparent openings
2. the chamber in a lighthouse containing the light
3. a structure with glazed or open sides above an opening in a roof for light or ventilation
4. a small tower or cupola or one stage of a cupola

A “new” lantern, therefore, provides the maximum amount of light given the glass of a new lamp, lighthouse, or architectural structure is at its most pristine state.

Lanterns have been used for centuries to provide a source of light to guide those seeking a particular path, direct those aiming toward a certain objective, or to generally add light to an otherwise darkened state.

Our goal at New Lantern is simple: shine light on artists, designers, innovators and entrepreneurs from which we in business can learn.

This is what defines our company and our name.

Innovation Starts in August

Posted by on August 7, 2016 at 12:42 pm

August has traditionally served as the most popular month for vacations in Corporate America and throughout many parts of the world. August to most employees means time away from the office, more time spent with family, time spent at the beach or on a lake or quietly at home.

On one hand, this makes August one of the least productive months of the year in terms of business output. On the other, I would contend that vacation time in fact contributes to a more productive employee upon his or her return.

So I would recommend that managers encourage employees to take some time off this month, and they should lead by example. Get away from the office. Step away from your smartphone. Clear the head and refuel the batteries, and come back to work in a more creative and innovative frame of mind.

In doing so, your executive team may soon have a new respect for August and how it can contribute to a more promising and profitable second half of 2016.

A Cut Above

Posted by on October 2, 2015 at 6:51 pm

Fiskars PowerGear2 Pruner
Among the 35 finalists in this year’s Fast Company’s annual Innovation By Design Awards was the PowerGear2 Pruning Tools from Fiskars. The award winners were announced last month and are featured in this month’s magazine now on newsstands.

In Fast Company’s own words: “The pruning tools are ingeniously designed with a rotating gear that provides a boost of power in the middle of the cut, where branches are thickest. Additionally, the latest models are easier on the hands, as their handles have been modified with a more oval shape and a gel skin that prevents blisters.”

Now I realize that pruning products may not get all hearts to racing, but as an avid gardener, I couldn’t be more pleased with Fast Company’s selection. I’ve used Fiskars pruning tools for years, and look forward to purchasing its PowerGear2 pruner.

Fiskars trip to the innovation awards stand this year was no cake walk. It faced some serious competition from 1,500 submissions across 14 categories. Other finalists included Adobe’s Ink and Slide, Google’s Cardboard VR, Janinge’s multi-purpose stackable chairs, Procter & Gamble and Whirlpool’s Swash System, and Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3.

For those of you who think innovation only comes from Silicon Valley startups or leading technology companies, think again. Fiskars was established as an ironworks company in Finland in 1649. This is not a typo. For nearly 366 years Fiskars has been churning out some of the finest cutting, shearing, and pruning products on the planet. And, as indicative of its 2015 Fast Company award, Fiskars has proved that it still knows a thing or two about good design and innovation.

Today, Fiskars has 8,600 employees in 30 countries and sells its products in over 100 countries. So celebrate good design and longevity today by purchasing one of Fiskars’ products. It just might help you stay a cut above the competition.

Not to be Confused with Colitis

Posted by on June 29, 2015 at 5:39 pm

“On a dark desert highway, cool wind in my hair, warm smell of colitas, rising up through the air.”

When the Eagles released the song Hotel California as a single in February 1977 (from the album by the same name), the band had already released four other albums, and had enjoyed numerous weeks at the top of the charts during the mid-1970’s. Yet, it was Hotel California that helped solidify the Eagles’ place in rock and roll history.

In 1977, Hotel California spent eight weeks as the number one album in America, and landed the Eagles two Grammys. Since its release, over 16 million copies of the album have been sold. Rolling Stone magazine ranks Hotel California at #37 on its 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.

The song still resonates in my head today as freshly as it did in 1977, and why is that? It is timeless, memorable, and generally appealing to a wide and diverse audience.

Are there corporate equivalents to Hotel California? Maybe so. Kleenex, Gatorade, and Harley Davidson come to mind.

Good marketing, strong product performance, and dogged customer focus keep great products and brands at the top of the charts year after year.

One-hit wonders and flashy products come and go each year, but the truly deserving survive.

If your company gives considerable attention to these important fundamentals, the sweet smell of success will follow. Or is that the smell of colitas?

In Mexico, colitas is a slang term for the buds of a marijuana plant. Not to be confused with colitis, the inflammation of the colon, which interestingly enough can be treated with medical marijuana.

Design Worthy of Our Planet

Posted by on March 28, 2015 at 12:52 pm

Istanbul's Vakko Fashion Center

Last week, the New York chapter of the American Institute of Architects announced its 35 design award winners for 2015. This year’s winners were selected from a pool of 391 applicants across four categories: architecture, interiors, projects and urban design.

In addition to design quality and innovation, particular weight was given this year by the judging panel to “demonstrated consideration of ecological responsibilities” according to the AIA-NY press release.

Top awards went to the SsD firm for its Songpa Micro Housing Project in Seoul, South Korea; Davis Brody Bond’s National September 11 Memorial Museum in New York, NY; NADAAA and John Wardle Architects‘ Melbourne School of Design in Melbourne, Australia; and REX’s Vakko Fashion Center in Instanbul, Turkey (as shown in above photo).

Bravo and congratulations to this year’s winners for making our planet more aesthetically pleasing and ecologically responsible at the same time.

The works of the award winners will featured at the Center for Architecture, 536 LaGuardia Place, in New York, NY from April 23 to June 20.

I Still Love Lucy

Posted by on October 15, 2014 at 8:13 pm

The I Love Lucy television show first aired on this day in 1951. It starred then-Hollywood legend Lucille Ball, whose zany and fresh comedic antics helped turn the sitcom into the most watched television show of its era.

Ball’s trademark blazing red hair and slapstick humor was an unlikely pairing with her co-star, Desi Arnaz. Arnaz, who played Lucy’s husband Ricky Ricardo, was also her real-life husband during the run of the show. Arnaz was a dark-haired Cuban American singer and bandleader, whose memorable heavy accent and exclamations on the show continue to resonate to this day.

CBS executives at the time questioned whether the U.S. television audience would accept the idea of an All-American redhead married to a Cuban. Those fears quickly turned to celebration as I Love Lucy went on to become one of the most popular television sitcoms of all time. Sixty-three years after its debut, reruns of I Love Lucy are still viewed by more than 40 million Americans each year.

On the show, Lucy and Ricky were joined by co-stars Vivian Vance and William Frawley, who played Ethel and Fred Mertz. Vance and Frawley were perfectly cast as the Ricardos’ neighbors, landlord, and best friends. To this day, I still laugh thinking about the scene of Lucy and Ethel working in the chocolate factory on the production line.

Lucille Ball not only broke new ground as a leading female character of a television sitcom, she also served as the first woman to head a television production company, Desilu, which she and Arnaz formed. As a very active studio head at Desilu, Ball “pioneered a number of methods still in use in television production today such as filming before a live studio audience with a number of cameras, and distinct sets adjacent to each other.”

Whether it’s a television studio, and large corporation, or a small or medium size business, chief executives need to be willing to move outside of their safe zone in order to innovate and try new approaches. Success in business comes from bold leadership, a strong team, and promoting a culture that embraces an inventive spirit.