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Have Breakfast with Zipcar's CEO, Boston Beer Works' Founder & "Borrowing Brilliance" Author on Thursday

Posted by Scott Kirsner  November 17, 2009 10:08 AM

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WBZ has put together a really interesting panel for Thursday's "Business Breakfast." The focus is on "Building Your Business in Bailout Times," and the speakers include the CEO of Newbury Comics, Mike Dreese; Scott Griffith of Zipcar; Jim Koch of the Boston Beer Company; and David Kord Murray, an ex-Intuit exec who wrote the 2009 book "Borrowing Brilliance: The Six Steps to Business Innovation By Building on the Ideas of Others." (Rejected title: "Stealing Smart Stuff: Three-and-a-Half Ways to Rip Off Good Ideas Without Getting Caught.")

I caught up with Murray earlier this month. He's a native of Sudbury, educated at UVM, who worked in sales roles here in Massachusetts before joining Intuit, where he was head of innovation. I'd heard good things about talks he gave earlier this fall at iRobot and MIT.

At Intuit, Murray told me, working directly with CEO Scott Cook, he started exploring the questions of where the best ideas come from, how they're honed, and whether you can teach people to come up with them in the first place.

"When you look at great ideas, and where they come from, you find that they're all combinations of existing stuff," Murray says. "For me, the revelation was, you're borrowing other ideas and combining them. Borrowing is where you get the stuff to build great ideas. It's not taking the idea, but using pieces of an idea and reassembling them into something new."

The event is free, and it takes place from 8 to 10 AM at the Westin Copley Place. Register here. (That's Murray in the picture, atop Mount McKinley. I have to wonder: Is that a borrowed climbing axe in his hand?)

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About Scott Kirsner

Scott Kirsner was part of the team that launched Boston.com in 1995, and has been writing a column for the Globe since 2000. His work has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Newsweek, and Variety. Scott is also the author of the books "Fans, Friends & Followers" and "Inventing the Movies," was the editor of "The Convergence Guide: Life Sciences in New England," and was a contributor to "The Good City: Writers Explore 21st Century Boston." Scott also helps organize several local events on entrepreneurship, including the Nantucket Conference and Future Forward. Here's some background on how Scott decides what to cover, and how to pitch him a story idea.

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