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C Space Inspiration Weekly: Designing a Better .gov, Shoestring Beer-vertising, and Disney’s Feedback Loop

I can’t help but admit that my favorite holiday is July 4th.  While the cookouts and summer sun are great, I’m one of those nerds who likes to reflect on just how awesome our Founding Fathers were to take on such a great challenge and declare American independence. (What foresight! What bravery! Should I stop now? This guy gets it.)

My reflections this year have got me thinking that, sometimes, the best path to unlocking success in the future is reflecting on the past. In this weekly dose of inspiration, I take a look at a few articles that have me thinking others are getting it, too:

Meet Nava, A Startup That Wants To Fix The Government’s Crappy Design, Fast Company

Our Founding Fathers built the groundwork for the United States of America by considering what would be best for the people. Given the turmoil we face these days, you might snarl – but I’m just going to say it: the government was the first customer-centric organization in America. Now, startup company Nava has a novel idea – they’re setting out to help fix the government, by thinking from the end-user’s perspective.

How Narragansett Beer Rebuilt Its Brand With a Meager $100,000 Media Budget:  Deep roots and word of mouth, AdWeek

“Now president and CEO, Hellendrung says he ‘took a look at what makes [the Narragansett] brand click’ and found that ‘a lot of it is just the history of it, the localness of it and our deep ties to New England.’”  This CEO knows that looking to the past can be a helpful tool in understanding a brand’s opportunity for growth in the present and future. Since Hellendrung has been in charge, he’s led his beer company to double-digit growth by understanding the brand’s roots and connecting with consumers in new ways.

The Secret to Walt Disney’s Corporate Strategy, Fast Company

“The illustration might be nearly 60 years old, but it’s still the basis of the brand’s success.” Disney’s corporate theory was determined and sketched out what seems like eons ago (in the business world), but it still rings true today. And Disney isn’t stuck in their ways, either; they’re not afraid to push the envelope to keep pace with the rapidly changing landscape of technology while recognizing that it can sometimes be a messy, less-than-magical process.

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