A MIDAS Commercial Membership: Energize Your Business through Innovation and Rapid Prototyping

MIDAS Fab Lab Commercial Membership benefits

If you’re business is looking to innovate and create in order to boost the bottom line, look no further than a Commercial Membership here at MIDAS!

MIDAS membership services are open to regional companies, including start-ups, with a focus on supporting prototype and product commercialization. We provide all the modern technology your business needs to develop fast-iteration, short-run prototypes.

While the MIDAS Fab Lab is not intended for high volume production runs, we pride ourselves on offering the modern technology tools you cannot access anywhere else in the region – we’re here to help your business grow and innovate!

With over $430,000 of the best digital fabrication equipment, our industry-leading expertise gives you peace of mind.

Win – Win – Win

  • Embrace new technology – get ahead of your competition
  • Get customized training
  • Prototype development at any stage
  • Bring your product to market faster!

Commercial Membership benefits include:

  • Time to Prototype – coordinate your schedule with MIDAS and utilize the space on the days and times suited to your needs – at every stage of your business growth.
  • Prototype consulting – from customized training to side-by-side prototype development to contracted fabrication services.
  • Space to Expand – starting or expanding your business is expensive. Scale without scaling by using our 6500 sqft facility to expand without increasing your footprint.
  • Learning Centre – Need a space for design work, team meetings or events? Utilize our 1000 sqft Learning Centre setup with fibre broadband internet and Windows 10 workstations. Our computers are fully loaded with modern 2d and 3d design, engineering and CNC software packages for use by your company.
  • High speed “Fibre Broadband” – wireless internet access throughout our facility ensures you are connected globally to your clients and audience.

#madeatMIDAS: Regional examples of cutting edge innovations created here at MIDAS

Our equipment along with our expert team have helped several regional companies innovate and prototype to take their businesses to the next level. Read about these recent journeys in MIDAS innovation.

MIDAS Fab Lab Commercial Membership process and benefits

If you’re interested in more information regarding our Commercial Memberships, please click HERE for all the details, including payment, package, and investment info.

Are you an individual looking to explore the possibilities available at MIDAS? See our course calendar HERE. Check out what our Public Services might be able to do for you!

WEEKLY TOURS THURSDAYS FROM 6-7 PM

6 Ways to Develop the Maker Spirit in Your Child

MIDAS How to Make your child a Maker

Sure, the maker spirit is alive and well at a makers space such as MIDAS, but how do you encourage it in your child in this modern, device-driven age? We’ve got a few suggestions.

Humans are, by their very nature, makers. Tinkering, building, disassembling, inventing, innovating. These are not only the touchstones of what has become known as the Maker Movement but human evolution, for the most part.

Today, these fundamentals of making are being encouraged and nurtured very specifically, particularly when it means inspiring our kids off of the screens and devices that have become ubiquitous with modern human experience.

The Maker Movement, or what is this emerging social exercise promoting a creative, artisan, innovative spirit, encourages children and adults alike to explore their world through curiosity, discovery, and a hands-on approach to learning.

The maker spirit thrives at MIDAS where we believe that Making is about helping people realize that they have the ability to solve problems and explore options and alternatives as they create something new and potentially innovative, even disruptive. We believe that Making is great for everyone, no matter their age, to develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills – by following their curiosity, exploring the things they love!

Here are a few suggestions for nurturing the Maker in your child from our in-house Maker expert:

  1. Start with their interests and passions
    Interests can be so diverse: music, fashion, fishing, race cars, motorcycles, video games, and so much more. It doesn’t matter; a maker spirit begins with whatever sparks your child’s imagination and curiosity. As long as it’s something they love, chances are they’ll be keen to learn more about it, including how it’s made and how it works. “It’s important to identify a child’s interests – their passion – and provide related activities,” according to MIDAS Fab Lab Director, Brad Pommen.
  2. Encourage curiosity about how things work
    Everyone has some old electronics or appliances lying around which are wonderfully appealing for taking apart and exploring what’s inside. Curiosity and a willingness to ask questions are key. “It’s fun to see how things work and think about ways to make them better,” Pommen encourages.
  3. Build something new
    It can be as simple as Legos or cardboard, writing a computer program using Scratch, or using a sewing machine and craft materials to make a Halloween costume. Let the child’s interests guide, but it’s certainly OK to help inspire based on upcoming events, holidays, or merely to expose them to something out of the ordinary.
  4. Failure is your friend
    Failure can be hard for all of us to get our heads around but can be doubly so for youngsters. However, as any successful innovator or disruptor will tell you, invention and innovation are founded on trial and error – mostly error! Brad understands that failure is a natural and inevitable part of the creative process, “Celebrating failure is fundamental to what we do here at MIDAS!”  Accepting and embracing failure is an integral part of the design process and helps to create an environment where aspiring makers understand that failure is actually a safe place where they can learn valuable lessons from their mistakes, and feel more confident taking risks.
  5. Find a community
    In addition to failure as a Maker fundamental, collaboration and sharing ideas are integral to the Maker experience. In order to continue learning, it’s important to help your child connect with others who share their interests. Your school may offer a robotics club or Makerspace and encourage them to attend local Maker camps. There are online communities and resources as well such as websites like Make Magazine, Instructables.com, and DIY.org. For the real go-getters, encourage them to initiate their own groups or clubs to help foster and develop their Maker spirit!
  6. Participate in a fun maker event
    A wonderful way to motivate the Maker in your child is to encourage them to participate in local or online competitions or events. Like clubs or groups, fun events such as the Kootenay Contraption Contest or the Selkirk GLOWS RobotGames, are founded on the principles of collaboration and sharing. Fab Lab Director and RobotGames founder, Brad Pommen understands the positive and inspiring impact these events can have on children’s competency and learning even beyond the event itself, “Learning how to build, program and compete a robot (in RobotGames) combines programming technologies,” Pommen added. “Robotics introduces logic; engineering speaks to the design aspects;and maker is putting the whole physical package together…”

Ultimately, Making is just a terrific way for young people to explore their creativity and imagination. More than that, it’s a great way for parents to enjoy fun, quality time with their child, learning and creating.

 

MIDAS Courses for February, 2019

MIDAS September 2018 courses

Beat the mid-winter blues and get inspired here at the fab lab through hands-on experiential education in one of our MIDAS courses.

If you’ve made entrepreneurial or innovative resolutions for 2019, MIDAS is the perfect solution to help you keep not only on track. Check out what we have going on in the MIDAS Fab Lab this month and join us to help bring your ideas to reality.

If you’re in need of prototyping, 3D printing and fabrication, the variety of equipment available at MIDAS is geared specifically to offer you state-of-the-art resources to create exactly what you need.

Maybe you’ve already got a start using our fabrication equipment and are wanting to take it to the next level?  We’ve got you covered there, too!  Advanced certification courses are also available.

Inspiration, learning, and new skills here we come!

Review our February calendar of courses and training… From woodworking on the Shopbot CNC to laser cutting and more, we’re sure there’s a course to fit exactly what you’re looking for as you consider your next DIY/maker project.

This isn’t all, of course!  Be sure to review the full calendar of all upcoming workshops and courses here at MIDAS.

Trotec 120Watt Laser Cutter courses at MIDAS

 

Trotec 120 Watt Laser Cutter

The Speedy is the ideal laser engraving machine – no matter if you are starting your own business or want to speed up current production, laser engraving wood, plastic, acrylic, fabrics and many other materials, has never been more efficient. This CO2 laser engraver has the highest quality components which ensure minimal maintenance requirements.
Register NOW!

 

Shopbot CNC (Desktop & Alpha) Course at MIDAS

Shopbot CNC (Desktop & Alpha)

Training on BOTH the Desktop and Alpha Shopbot CNC included.  The ShopBot Desktop has a bed size of 24″ x 18″ and a 1HP motor.  This ShopBot Alpha is a full-size CNC with a 48″x96″ table with a 4HP motor.  Both machines are run by the same programming software and have full capability to mill 2d and 3d prototypes.
With enough production capability for a three-shift factory, ShopBot PRSalpha tools are tough and sophisticated, gantry-based CNC routers using advanced technology for CNC cutting, drilling, carving and machining.  Tooling and use make this pair of CNCs perfect for soft-material CNC cutting at any size.
Register NOW

ULTIMAKER 2 3D printerUltimaker 2 3D Printer

The Ultimaker 2 3D printer is easy and reliable, designed for the best experience in 3D printing.

Engineered to perform, this 3D digital printing workhorse is reliable, efficient, and user-friendly and particularly useful for artists, engineers, makers and innovators looking for fast, high-quality prints in just about any size or material.

You can learn more and see a few recent projects HERE.

Register NOW!

Curious about what MIDAS can do help you accomplish? Talk to us!

Come out for a tour: Thursdays, 6-7pm.

Enjoy access to the Fab Lab! Become a member.

#madeatMIDAS #makersgonnamake #metaltechalley

SMARTS Program – Call for Proposals | Deadline March 2019

Selkirk College’s SMARTS Program invites small and medium-sized businesses to submit proposals for technology-oriented research and development projects.

Background

The Selkirk-SME Applied Research and Technology Solutions (SMARTS) Program connects businesses with Selkirk College faculty and student expertise in the fields of geospatial technology and digital fabrication.

It aims to help small- and medium-sized enterprises use advanced technologies to develop new or improved products and services.

The Program is supported by the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP). As a result of this support, financial assistance is available to cover a portion of research costs associated with successful proposals.

Proposal Requirements

Proposed projects should make use of Selkirk College research expertise in a way that helps the applicant develop new or improved products, services, or business processes that are anticipated to drive the growth of the enterprise. Projects should be experimental or innovative in nature.

Potential applicants are encouraged to contact the SMARTS team in advance of the proposal deadline to confirm their eligibility, discuss their project idea and its fit with Selkirk College researcher expertise, and get help to scope a proposal. See the ‘How to Apply’ section for contact information.

Project examples

SMARTS researchers have broad expertise in the fields of geospatial technologies and digital fabrication. Past SMARTS projects have involved the following R&D services:

Digital Fabrication

  • Rapid Prototyping (producing prototypes, researching and testing prototype designs and materials)
  • 3D Modeling (scanning 3D objects for reproduction, generating 3D models for analysis and production)
  • Advanced Manufacturing Process Optimization (building custom digital fabrication equipment, improving productivity with new workflows and equipment configurations)

Geospatial Technologies

  • Web Mapping (developing innovative mapping platforms for data sharing and communications)
  • 3D Visualizations (generating static and dynamic visualizations of 3D geospatial data, developing augmented reality and virtual reality applications)
  • Remote Sensing and Unmanned Aerial Systems (collecting data via UAV, testing sensors, analyzing remotely sensed data from UAV or satellite, developing workflows and algorithms)
  • Spatial Modeling (modeling landscape impacts of environmental change)
  • App Development and Customization (building customized mobile tools for geospatial data collection and sharing, researching and testing technology options)

If you have a technology-focused project idea that does not fit in the categories or digital fabrication orf geomatics, contact the SMARTS project team to discuss options. Faculty from other fields such as engineering, health and natural resources may also be available to provide research services depending on your project needs.

Eligible Applicants

The program is open to small- or medium-sized enterprises (up to 500 employees) in Canada. Businesses must be growth-oriented.

Application deadline

Submissions are accepted on a continuous basis. The SMARTS programs ends in March 2019.

Available Funding & Eligible Expenses

The SMARTS program provides up to $5000 per project in research funding and proponents are required to contribute at least 25% of project costs. Projects with a larger budget may be proposed with the understanding that costs over the $5000 contribution will be the company’s responsibility.

Apply Now

Read more about the SMARTS Program. Please contact the SMARTS Program facilitator, Lauren Rethoret, for the application form and to discuss your project idea.

Upcoming MIDAS Courses: January, 2019

MIDAS September 2018 courses

Happy New Year! Our winter calendar is coming together with our established roster of incredible learning opportunities but new as well.

MIDAS is the perfect solution to help you keep those entrepreneurial or innovative resolutions, so check it out and we’ll look forward to helping you bring your ideas to life.

If you’re in need of prototyping, 3D printing and fabrication, the variety of equipment available at MIDAS is geared specifically to offer you state-of-the-art resources to create exactly what you need.

Maybe you’ve already got a start using our fabrication equipment and are wanting to take it to the next level?  We’ve got you covered there, too!  Advanced certification courses are also available.

Inspiration, learning, and new skills here we come!

Review our January calendar of courses and training… From woodworking on the Shopbot CNC to laser cutting and more, we’re sure there’s a course to fit exactly what you’re looking for as you consider your next DIY/maker project.

This isn’t all, of course!  Be sure to review the full calendar of all upcoming workshops and courses here at MIDAS.

 

Shopbot CNC (Desktop & Alpha) Course at MIDAS

Shopbot CNC (Desktop & Alpha)

Training on BOTH the Desktop and Alpha Shopbot CNC included.  The ShopBot Desktop has a bed size of 24″ x 18″ and a 1HP motor.  This ShopBot Alpha is a full-size CNC with a 48″x96″ table with a 4HP motor.  Both machines are run by the same programming software and have full capability to mill 2d and 3d prototypes.
With enough production capability for a three-shift factory, ShopBot PRSalpha tools are tough and sophisticated, gantry-based CNC routers using advanced technology for CNC cutting, drilling, carving and machining.  Tooling and use make this pair of CNCs perfect for soft-material CNC cutting at any size.
Register NOW!

3D Printing Made With TinkerCad_2

3D Design & Printing with TinkerCad

This course will give starting tools and tips in 3D Design with TinkerCad from Autodesk, a powerful but intuitive to learn design program. Also, how to 3D Print these designs is instructed in this dual class!
Register NOW!

 

The MarkForged Mark Two course at MIDAS

MarkForged 3D Printer

This is a certification course.

The Mark Two is an industrial strength 3D printer here at the MIDAS Lab and using continuous fiber inlays together with high-performance nylons, it creates parts that can compete with metal!

You can learn more about the Markforged HERE.

Register NOW!

Roland MonoFab SRM-20 Mini Milling Machine training at MIDASRoland MonoFab SRM-20 Mini Milling Machine

The SRM-20 offers compact size and powerful functionality for production ready, realistic parts and prototypes. A wide range of materials, including modeling wax, chemical wood, foam, acrylic, poly acetate, ABS and PCB’s can be precision milled with this machine at MIDAS.
Register NOW!

 

 

MIDAS courses & training: Creaform 700 3D Handyscan Scanner

Creaform 700 3D Handyscan Scanner

The Handyscan is AMAZING but don’t take our word for it. Come and see for yourself! This session will demonstrate the handyscan on a number of objects: how to place tags, basic scanning, set up of a receiving software and review of captured online files. (CAD and others on demand).

This course DOES NOT cover the manipulation of captured images or printing but is intended to allow members to scan and understand the potential of this device.

Recommended for engineers, architects, manufacturers, machinists, makers and hobbyists alike.
Register NOW!

 

Young Entrepreneurs Program

Trail BC Young Entrepreneurs program

Junior Achievement BC & Austin Engineering present… the Young Entrepreneurs Program with Mary Austin in Trail, BC.

Junior Achievement is a nonprofit dedicated to educating youth in business, entrepreneurship and financial literacy. We are excited to launch a series of 6 (free) workshops for local youth age 9-12 that will help inspire and educate Trail’s leaders of tomorrow.

This interactive, after-school program facilitated by Mary Austin (and guest speakers) will provide basic business concepts and help identify the key success factors needed to turn personal and team performance into profit. Through this program, local youth will be inspired and equipped with the skills to bring their entrepreneurial ideas to life.

Where: Midas Fab Lab, Trail, BC

When: Wednesdays from 4:00 – 5:00 PM, February 6 – March 13, 2019

Ages: 9-12

Cost: Free

For more information or to register your child, please contact Alanna Tynan at alanna.tynan@jabc.org

#madeatMIDAS: I/O Design & Engineering Virtual & Augmented Reality

#madeatMIDAS and I/O Design

I/O Design & Engineering look to cutting edge technology – Virtual and Augmented Reality – to provide their clients with reliable, accurate, and realistic modeling for a variety of applications.

Far from being a technology of the future, virtual and augmented reality is increasingly being utilized in multiple industries and sectors, ranging from entertainment, communications and education to design, scientific research and engineering.

I/O Design & Engineering in Trail, BC, is a business taking advantage of virtual and augmented reality to more thoroughly provide for the needs of their clients, not to mention set themselves ahead of the pack in their corner of the market.

Modeling in 3D has been a tool for many engineers for decades. The design, construction, and use of buildings and infrastructure is one such area where 3D models have had a significant impact, bringing designs and drawings into tangible imagery and, in many cases, form. However, access to 3D models still requires that the users have the capacity to interact with the model and interpret the images that they see.

#madeatMIDAS and I/O Design. Augmented and Virtual Reality

By leveraging VR technologies, viewing scanned objects, locations, data and more in fully explorable, at-scale settings, a business such as I/O Design & Engineering is able to generate the valuable early feedback about the impact and efficacy of new designs. Something that, previously, was hard to assess from plans and renderings alone.

I/O Design’s introduction to the possibilities of this technology in their business was through their attendance to the 2017 #BCTECH Summit where the theme of that year’s event was Virtual and Augmented Reality. With the help of the $1000 grant Columbia Basin Trust makes available for Basin-based businesses to attend the annual summit, the principals made their way not only to Vancouver but inspiration.

Upon their return to Trail, owner Isaac Saban and I/O Design approached the team at MIDAS and proposed a donation of $10,000 for the Fab Lab to purchase the necessary VR/AR technologies in exchange for a one-year corporate membership.

#madeatMIDAS and I/O Designs

I/O Design & Engineering owner Isaac Saban demonstrating their AR/VR project

With the help of MIDAS instructor, Jason Taylor, who spent almost 20 hours converting 3D designs to VR/AR to see if what the company had in mind was even possible, drew on various resources and did all the vital legwork to hand the team at I/O the ball so they could run with it!

More than just a model – an experience.

To continue on Taylor’s work, I/O Design hired a summer student, Jordan Currie, to use 3D scan data rather than a solid 3D model to produce VR/AR imagery. After a couple of months, the company took the work to yet another level, hiring database programmer, Tim Cristofoli to pick up where Jordan left off.

Moving from the Lower Mainland to Trail to “play with VR”, it took Tim about three months to get up to speed and begin adding animations and colour, bringing I/O Design’s VR/AR project to life.

Given the power of providing the user to experience rather than simply view with VR/AR, short-term, the I/O Design & Engineering team expects to see their new VR/AR abilities to be used for training purposes and to allow crews to more accurately view and assess the inside of various industrial facilities.

As a result, I/O Design & Engineering offers a service that goes well beyond traditional representations such as photographs, 3D renderings, and diagrams, enabling clients to receive an entirely different perspective on a space or object in real-world proportions.

The investment I/O Design made in MIDAS while leveraging the expertise of the Fab Lab team has allowed I/O Designs to quickly evolve their use of VR/AR technology and expand their services as well as their positioning in the market.

Curious about what MIDAS can do help you accomplish? Talk to us!

Come out for a tour: Thursdays, 6-7pm.

Peruse our course calendar for valuable training and certifications.

Enjoy access to the Fab Lab! Become a member.

#madeatMIDAS #makersgonnamake #metaltechalley

Design Thinking: A Creative Strategy for Innovation

Design Thinking for innovation

Looking for a strategy to maximize problem-solving, creativity, and innovation? Incorporate Design Thinking and see what happens!

When design principles are applied to strategy and innovation the success rate for innovation improves significantly.

Design Thinking is a human-centred, possibility driven, approach. It fundamentally draws upon what humans need – what problem needs addressing – before integrating technology and economics.

The Design Thinking methodology is a mindset. While used for problem-solving, it’s not actually problem-focused. It’s solution focused and action-oriented towards creating a preferred idea, project, product, even future. Design Thinking draws upon imagination, intuition, logic, and systemic reasoning, to explore possibilities of what could be – and to create a desired outcome that benefits the end user (typically the customer).

“Design thinking can be described as a discipline that uses the designer’s sensibility and methods to match people’s needs with what is technologically feasible and what a viable business strategy can convert into customer value and market opportunity.”
– Tim Brown CEO, IDEO

The inception of Design Thinking

It was computer scientist and Nobel Prize laureate Herbert A. Simon who first made mention of design as a science or way of thinking in his 1969 book, Sciences of the Artificial.

Through the 1970s, Design Thinking evolved in the design community before entering the mainstream in the 2000s. Seeing the benefits of the methodology and creative strategic process, professionals in sectors we know to be outside the realm of design –education, Information Technology, and business – also began embracing and applying Design Thinking.

The tools and methods of the approach borrow from a variety of disciplines, including ethnography, computer science, psychology, and organizational learning.

Design teams use Design Thinking to tackle ill-defined or unknown problems (referred to as wicked problems) because it reframes these types of problems in human-centric ways, allowing the designer to focus on what’s most important for users/customers. It’s been implemented to tremendous and prosperous effect in organizations such as Apple and Airbnb.

The Framework of Design Thinking

MIDAS design thinking diagram

Empathize

The first stage of the process requires an empathic understanding of the problem you’re trying to solve, typically through some form of user research. Empathy is vital as it allows you to set aside your own assumptions about the world in order to gain insight into users and their needs. Entering the realm of the users and, as far as possible, “becoming” them so as to begin work on custom-designing a solution.

Define

Collect and consolidate all the information you have gathered during the Empathize stage. Analyze your observations and synthesize them in order to define the core problems you and your team have identified so far. This is where you ensure that the problem you are addressing is fully exposed and clear, all of its elements and properties identified thoroughly.

Ideate

Now you’re ready to start generating ideas. With the knowledge you have gathered in the first two phases, you can start to “think outside the box” to identify new solutions to the problem statement you’ve created, and you can start to look for alternative ways of viewing the problem.

Prototype

Your design team can now produce a number of inexpensive, scaled-down versions of the product or specific features found within the product so you can investigate the problem solutions generated in the previous stage.

Test

Rigorously test the completed product using the best solutions identified during the prototyping phase. This is the final stage; however, this can be an iterative process, and you’ll use the results generated during the testing phase to redefine one or more problems.

The steps in this process provide a structure for understanding and pursuing innovation in ways that contribute to organic growth, adding real value to your customers. The cycle leverages observation in order to unearth unmet needs within the context and constraints of a particular situation.

According to Jeanne Liedtka of the University of Virginia’s Darden Graduate School of Business and former chief learning officer at United Technologies Corporation, value is achieved when there is an understanding of need, particularly that previously unknown, “The most secure source of new ideas that have true competitive advantage, and hence, higher margins, is customers’ unarticulated needs.”

Design Thinking brings ideas and designs to life on a circuitous journey of exploration, experimentation, and discovery. To move forward, it often involves taking several steps backward, several times… where evolution, refinement, and growth flourish!

New Years Resolutions… For Innovators!

MIDAS Fab Lab - New Years Resolutions for Innovators

Innovation is top of mind for many businesses. Simple resolutions such as saying yes, taking action no matter how small, and embracing failure could make 2019 your pivotal year!

Taking some time to contemplate the year ahead and the various resolutions you’ll make to help get you started on the right foot for the New Year? Great! But, you might want to disregard the stats: only 8% of us will actually achieve our New Year resolutions.

The most common reasons we fail in our resolve include unrealistic goals, neglecting to track progress and simply abandoning the commitment altogether.

Despite the dismal results, New Year’s resolutions can be an effective catalyst for change in our personal and family lives. Likewise for our professional lives. An impending new year encourages reflection, taking stock of successes and failures of the months past as you consider what you’d like to accomplish for the months and year ahead.

What changes would you like to see that will help your company innovate and grow? This year, whether you’re a business, startup, or entrepreneur, as you think about resolutions, consider leveraging a few different tactics to help inspire fresh innovation and vision in your work.

Say ‘yes’!

Such a powerful word!

The power of ‘yes’. A simple word with the power to influence the trajectory of any endeavour. The key to achieving any goal, innovative or otherwise, is to approach a challenge from a different mindset – with an open-minded sense of ‘yes’!

This simple word can create excitement and energy, inspiring new ideas. Saying ‘yes’ can break up the monotony; it can expand your network and opportunities. You never know, that next opportunity might be life-changing to your business or idea.

In the words of Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt: “Find a way to say yes to things. Say yes to invitations to a new country. Say yes to meeting new friends. Say yes to learning a new language, picking up a new sport. Yes is how you get your first job, and your next job. Yes is how you find your spouse and even your kids. Even if it’s a bit edgy, a bit out of your comfort zone, saying yes means you will do something new, meet someone new and make a difference in your life, and likely in others’ lives as well… Yes is a tiny word that can do big things. Say it often.”

Allow yourself to be persuaded

When it comes to developing a new product or service, growing your business, or advancing your idea you have to be prepared to hold your ground in order to push your ideas and vision forward. Equally important, however, is that you remain open to new ideas and feedback.

Al Pittampalli’s book, Persuadable, argues that successful leaders realize that a genuine willingness to change their own mind is the ultimate competitive advantage.

Developing and leading innovation requires agility and openness – releasing an ego that might get in the way of encouraging and accepting the great ideas of others.

Don’t be afraid to engage with those that disagree with you. In disagreement, rather than defending or rationalizing your approach, look for the merits in the opposing perspective and see if you can find alignment between views, or where your view might actually be tweaked and improved.

Take small, but immediate, action

It’s not unusual for businesses and organizations to be looking to the big move when it comes to ideas and innovation. But, let’s face it, those are few and far between. Most of the important milestones in the forward momentum of any business are going to be small and incremental.

Rather than planning for the major iteration, launch, or announcement it’s the simplest actions done effectively and with immediacy that have the most impact. The organizations that achieve their resolutions are laser-focused on the smaller, more specific, achievements that are integral to progress, not to mention much simpler for the team to analyze and action the results.

Embrace failure – it MUST be an option

Often the difference between a successful man and a failure is not one’s better abilities or ideas, but the courage that one has to bet on his idea, to take a calculated risk, and to act. – Maxwell Maltz

Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and take chances – failure will be your friend!

Failure provides us with the frightening and painful nudge we need to stop hiding behind our self-imposed limitations. As we grow to expect failure along the road to success it becomes something of a badge of honour.

Failure is an inevitable outcome of experimentation and innovation, and it’s where the most opportunties for learning, examination, and exploration is had.

Failure gave me an inner security that I had never attained by passing examinations,” Said J.K. Rowling. “I discovered that I had a strong will and more discipline than I had suspected. The knowledge that you have emerged wiser and stronger from setbacks means that you are, ever after, secure in your ability to survive.

Focus

Successful innovators and entrepreneurs start with the end in mind. But… they’re also diligent about avoiding distractions that divert their attention.

Focus on one or only a couple of things at a time. Don’t get caught up in measuring EVERYTHING. Those who are successful incorporate the best systems to track the fewest metrics possible to achieve their goals.

Distraction is truly around every corner, so it’s important to KISS and keep your eye on the ball of the core business.

Innovate because you can, not because you must

Many businesses wait to innovate only when confronted by crisis. Innovation ought not to be treated as a singular, binary event. It has to be approached as on-going, iterative, ever-evolving, and dynamic. This is where measurable progress lives.
Develop a well thought out program that includes regularly scheduled brainstorming activities; continuous inspiration, motivation, action, and drive to ensure continued, if not increased, competitiveness.
So, innovators, enjoy a reset along with the calendar on January 1st and incorporate ways of thinking that will help foster new vision and innovation. Despite the statistics, the New Year offers a great opportunity to reflect on fresh mindsets to take on for not only the coming year but well beyond.

Looking for inspiration this New Year? MIDAS can help!

With almost $500,000 in state-of-the-art fabrication and manufacturing equipment and the expertise and knowledge of our team, the MIDAS Fab Lab offers SO many opportunities to help you innovate – your business, your product, your idea!

Come out for a tour: Thursdays, 6-7pm.

Peruse our course calendar for valuable training and certifications.

Enjoy access to the Fab Lab! Become a member.

We’re Hiring! MIDAS Community Engagement Coordinator

We're Hiring! MIDAS Community Engagement Coordinator

Work at one of the most innovative and disruptive organizations in the Kootenays! MIDAS Community Engagement Coordinator

Closing date: January 2nd, 2019 @ 4:00 pm PST

MIDAS is a digital fabrication lab in Trail, BC.  MIDAS (Metallurgical Industrial Development Acceleration & Studies), is a project of the Kootenay Association for Science & Technology (www.kast.com). MIDAS offers the best “FAB”rication equipment available in the Kootenays for public, academic and commercial use. The facility is a renovated accessible space with state of the art equipment and training including: 3D Printers, 3D scanners, CNC milling equipment, metal shop, woodworking, an electronics lab, teaching and co-working space and more. 

Working as part of a progressive, motivated team, the main responsibilities of the MIDAS Community Engagement Coordinator will be to provide support to the Director, Lab Manager and Lab staff, and to provide exceptional customer service to MIDAS members, potential members, the general public and our commercial clientele.

You will be at the front line at MIDAS, and you will be able and ready to switch tasks throughout the day to accommodate the needs of members and operational staff at the facility. That said, we’re a super fun team and MIDAS is a rewarding place to work.

Closing date: January 2nd, 2019 @ 4:00 pm PST

Primary duties:

Engagement/Communications:

  • As the first point of contact at the MIDAS lab, you will provide professional and courteous customer service by greeting and guiding guests, answering inquiries, and referring them to the appropriate staff member.
  • Ensuring website, social media, training and operations calendars are updated daily and working with our media provider to strategize social media posts.
  • Using strong time management and organizational skills, you will act as the main liaison for tours, groups and event bookings; you will be assisting in set up and hosting of courses, tours and events.

Records Management & Reporting:

  • CRM Building; you will be responsible for maintaining a database of members and potential leads, following up on leads and ensuring information is accurate.
  • Compiling accurate monthly statistics/metrics for management team and maintaining standard operating procedures and maintenance records, monitor and document lab usage.

Health & Safety:

  • Manage and assist in Health & Safety, ensuring rules and regulations are followed precisely
  • Maintain accurate health and safety records per WorkSafe BC guidelines.
  • Assist / Administer and document first aid as required (First Aid training provided if not already possessing)

Other duties as assigned.

Requirements and Qualifications:

MIDAS is looking for a creative and motivated individual with confidence, good judgement, flexibility, and a desire to learn.

You will portray professionalism and discretion while showing a sense of humour as you provide a high level of service to MIDAS lab staff, and all stakeholders.

Proficiency with Microsoft Office (Word/Excel) and Google Suite is required.

Post Secondary education is preferred, however we will consider equivalent experience.

Hours of work: The successful candidate will be willing to work flexible hours from Monday-Friday, 30 hours per week.

Hourly rate: $18-$20 depending upon experience

To apply:

Closing date: January 2nd, 2019 @ 4:00 pm PST

Please provide a resume and cover letter telling us about yourself and why you feel you are a great fit for our team.  Email info@midaslab.ca

No phone calls please.

Kootenay Association for Science & Technology (KAST)