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Making innovation work for good. T:@inspirechilli

Saturday 16 November 2013

The Launch of Thinking Class

Over a year ago, I came with an idea to create ‘Thinking Class’ as a way to revolutionise travel and contribute to the development of social innovation. You can read my original blog on the concept here  So, what happened? Umm, apart from some interesting and productive journeys by myself, not much.  Until now.

This Monday, November 18th, Thinking Class is launched on a train travelling between London to Birmingham and back.  It’s a pilot flash-mob approach, although maybe that’s too strong a word. With four people involved, it’s more of a secret cabal.  The train selected is on a Virgin route because the original idea for Thinking Class came from reading 'Screw Business as Usual' whilst travelling on Virgin Atlantic. The Virgin brand is a bit 'thinking class' too.  It's also cost effective -  great customer service in a moving work space that costs less than hiring a meeting room. 

Armed with Thinking Class identity lanyards, and a menu of concepts to explore from the Foyer Federation’s excellent strategic plan consultation document, my special group of Advantaged Thinkers will be testing out the rules behind Thinking Class to see if it works on a limited scale of travellers from the same organisation.

Let me explain.

Unlike traditional class systems of travel, Thinking Class is not something you ‘buy’. It’s not about how much income you have to purchase privilege for yourself.  Thinking Class is designed for people who have something to give to others. It’s about how many ideas you can generate to invest in social change.

Membership of Thinking Class has a simple A-B-C set of rules.

Thinking must be:

Advantaged  We focus on positive opportunities to generate practical ideas that can contribute to a particular challenge instead of being lost in problems and philosophies

Brave  We dare to disrupt the accepted norm and look for what would be really innovative to make a ‘break through’ in practice now

Collaborative   What we create is shaped through other people’s voices in an authentic conversation that can be shared and developed with others

Together, A + B + C = TATA (Taking Advantaged Thinking Action)

Thinking Class is travel with a social purpose by giving ideas through powerful conversations.

If you can’t do that, you’re in the wrong seat.

If you want to glorify in talking about what’s wrong in the world, if you want to promote the status quo of what you are already doing, if you want to disseminate or develop your own IP rather than create something new that is not only yours – you are not a fellow traveller.

But if you get it, the only limit to membership is how many opportunities we can find to journey together. We can share plane flights, railway lines, walks to work, even hire a wedding bus for a day to ‘marry’ ideas between people from different sectors.  What's stopping us? The ticket to ride is ours to define.

At the end of the journey, those involved in a conversation can complete and return together a Thinking Class 'Ticket' - or Tickets - to share the currency of their discovery. 


Thinking Class Ticket  DATE..................

Advantaged:  What was the challenge and what were the positive solutions you came up with?
Brave: What was the ‘break through’ you believe this makes or could make and why?
Collaborative: Who was involved in the conversation, who could be involved next to take it further, and what role do you want to play if any?
Photo this form and send to colin@advantagedthinking.com, sharing any other contact details below for follow up:

What will happen to Thinking Class after the 18th?  I'll be announcing something a bit bigger and more external in a few weeks time.  Meanwhile, watch out for #thinkingclass on twitter and drop me a line if you'd like a 'ticket to ride' the future (and you care). If Richard Branson can screw business as usual, we can screw charity with even more inspiration.

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