Tattoos have become so commonplace that pen-maker Bic has embraced the concept and tried to capitalize on its popularity. The manufacturer is now offering sets of body markers designed for people to ink their own tattoos – temporarily. The design will last through several washings, enough to let you test the location and design before you venture into permanency.

Body ink is a logical product expansion for the company – it’s still ink, it still comes in very similar packaging, and it’s even sold in the same section of the store – yet it could create an avenue for new users as well as new uses.

Bic evolved from ink for paper to ink for skin. How might you allow your product to take a step in another direction? Even if the move is only temporary, it could result in some interesting adaptations for a new market.


I'm the chief connector at leadership dots where I serve as "the string" for individuals and organizations. Like stringing pearls together to make a necklace, "being the string" is an intentional way of thinking and behaving – making linkages between things that otherwise appear random or unconnected – whether that be supervising a staff, completing a dissertation or advancing a project in the workplace. I share daily leadership dots on my blog to provide examples of “the string” in action. I use the string philosophy through coaching, consulting and teaching to help others build capacity in themselves and their organizations. I craft analogies and metaphors that help people comprehend complex topics and understand their role in the system. My favorite work involves helping those new to supervision or newly promoted supervisors build confidence and learn the skills necessary to effectively lead their team.

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