Our two men in LEGO, the Norwegians Paal Smith-Meyer and Tormod Askildsen, will provide an insight to the journey towards open innovation in the Danish toy corporation.
For many years, LEGO suffered with poor results and Paal and Tormod have been important pieces in the company’s successful turnaround. They will provide a back view on the hacking of Mindstorms in 1998 towards an open business platform for ‘passionate entrepreneurs* in 2008. All in all they have been the driving force on this journey and are now working on the future for community development in all of LEGO’s business.
About the presenters:
Paal Smith-Meyer is a designer and Head of New Business Group. He can both draw LEGO toys and develop visions and business plans for the corporation. This makes him a modern designer and provided him with a.o. the Grundfos Travelling Scholarship last year.
Paal examined as a product designer from the University of Northhumbria at Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1999 and was employed as a designer in LEGO in 2000. He has later held the positions as Design Manager and Creative Director before he landed the position as Head of New Business Group in 2006. He has also worked with innovation strategy and LEGO’s vision.
Tormod Askildsen went to Denmark to study at Copenhagen Business School in 1980. He got the job as Marketing Trainee in 1983 and has worked with marketing in the European market and later globally within LEGO Education until 1995 where he developed the LEGO Mindstorm project. Tormod established the LEGO Community Development in 1999 and has since then headed this area with the exception of a break in 2007 when he was responsible for the LEGO Factory project.