MUSINGS on Pi…and what’s in a name
March 14, 2015

Dear Readers;

Happy Pi Day!

It’s 3/14/15 and the world is a buzz! Today is the only day this century that matches pi, the mathematical ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. Pi can be rounded off to 3.1415, but in actually goes on infinitely, like imagination, it has no endpoint. Pi has been one of the central problem solving tools for centuries.

Now I have always had a particular fondness for the circle, more so than straight lines or angles. Circles are prominent in my home décor. And for years we’ve built my vegetable garden as raised beds within a large circle. Circles are power symbols for me.

In 1995, when I decided to re-form my work life and start a new consulting firm I knew I wanted just the right name and symbol to convey my offering. Self-reflection and brainstorming with my husband and close friends led to the name Practical Imagination…. a company devoted to engaging imaginative, creative thinking yet also focused toward practicality and problem solving so that “ideas” could become “reality” and brought to market. But then we playfully thought, wow, if we add an “e” we would have PIE. We landed on “Enterprises” to encompass a wide range of services and activities that we would serve up to clients to help them grow. Eureka! When I first said these three words, “Practical Imagination Enterprises” I knew it was exactly what I wanted to convey.

Practical Imagination Enterprises® has served us well all these years as we offer product innovation, marketing and research consulting services drawing upon three streams of expertise: diverse client teams, consumer/customer teams and outside Idea Sparks or Thought Leaders. We mix it all together in an approach that is multi-layered and playful.

Of course it’s no accident that our initials are PIE! But rather than “pie in the sky,” our logo is a global balloon, whose string is gently looped around the company name to signify that it is grounded.

Now for that other meaning… I think tonight is a good time for a tangy, sweet slice of apple pie a la mode.



Laurie Tema-Lyn

Practical Imagination Enterprises


Musings: Another Market for Stir It Up! Recipes for Robust Insights & Red Hot Ideas
October 11, 2012

I returned from the QRCA national conference in Montreal this week fired up, feeling the joy from the learning and camaraderie. There were many great presentations from which to choose, and the informal meetings and conversations provided me with nuggets and new ideas I want to explore.

I was personally thrilled to hear such wonderful feedback from colleagues who have been using my book, Stir It Up! Recipes for Robust Insights & Red Hot Ideas (Paramount Market Publishing, Inc.) and getting great results to the exercises.

But an unexpected new market was suggested. John, a retired 8th grade teacher from NY, told me he had been devouring the book during the conference and thought many of its suggestions would be outstanding to bring to the classroom. His perspective was that many of the exercises as well as the principles would resonate with important programs about creating conversations, encouraging diversity and anti-bullying.

What an exciting suggestion! The education market is not something I have particularly focused on in the past—and while my sister and niece are teachers, the feedback I’ve heard from them is that the management requirements of the current NJ core curriculum make it hard to find time for creative exploration.

So I’m putting this out to the universe. Here’s a sample exercise from the book—Who’s Your Muse? I’m giving a shout out to you teachers—to check out the book and do let me know if you think these ideas and suggestions could be useful integrating with classroom activities!

My best,

Laurie Tema-Lyn
Practical Imagination Enterprises
908 237 2246
Stir It Up! cover

Whos your Muse


Musings: Letting Go to Receive the New
December 11, 2011

It’s that time of the year to reflect on what has transpired. The “good, the bad, the ugly,” so to speak. No seriously, it’s all good if we take the hard stuff as learning from which to move forward and re-create.

I’ve started my end of year reflections; am enormously grateful for my life, love, family and opportunity to continue to grow creatively and expand my work. I’m amazed at the joy and energy I experienced in wiritng my book, Stir It Up! Recipes for Robust Insights & Red Hot Ideas, and the very positive responses I have received from readers. I hope the book has a long life and provides value for many.

And I’m noticing habits, attitudes and things that clutter and get in the way of moving forward. The literal clutter like an office full of stuff waiting to be filed because of the busy-ness of this amazing year. And the mind clutter.

I’m vowing to spruce it up; one step, one day at a time!

Musings on a “Soft Launch” for Stir It Up!
July 17, 2011

Last Sunday was a glorious day here and I held an open house, book signing to celebrate the recent publication of my new book, Stir It Up! Recipes for Robust Insights & Red Hot Ideas (Paramount Market Publishing.) It’s a “cookbook” of sorts, filled with exercises for market researchers, meeting facilitators, consultants and anyone looking for ways to stir up energy, insights and creative ideas.

The book “poured out of me” at astonishing speed; it was an absolute delight to write.  I’m thrilled to be able to share what I’ve learned, developed and used in a long and varied career.  And it was so gratifying to bring different parts of my life together to help me celebrate the book.

The gathering included family, friends and neighbors as well as people from my professional world– the QRCA, my singing chums from VOICES Chorale, my exercise mates from Healthquest.

As I wondered in and out of the ribbons of conversation, I realized how this disparate group of folks were connecting in such wonderful ways; sharing their stories, knowledge and perspectives.  And it seems a few new friends were made in the gathering.

Stir It Up!  Recipes for Robust Insights & Red Hot Ideas is available at

And on

Laurie Tema-Lyn

April 19, 2011

In Praise of Pruning

I’m a creative person; I excel at spinning out lots and lots of ideas and possibilities. (You may have even noticed that I get a bit wordy in my blogs!) So perhaps you can imagine my chagrin when the website and branding consultants I’m working with strongly urged me to identify “just the top 3 things” I want to focus on and communicate in my updated website.

My current site has about 40 pages of material if you print it out…and that doesn’t even count all the articles, newsletters, white papers and presentations posted there.  But I know these folks are right!  It’s time to prune.  And it’s the time to do that elsewhere.

As a gardener I know that Spring is the best time to get the shears out and clip all the extraneous matter away so those lovely, colorful blooms can reveal themselves. Back inside, I see it’s also time to do something similar in my office, as the last year’s worth of consulting projects and papers are stacked all around.  I’m lucky, my office is spacious, but even still, the paper piles are beginning to mar the view of the stately tall trees outside my window.

So here come the mighty shears, the big, black garbage bags, and the mental willpower to get rid of the old, in order to make way for the new.

Wish me luck and fortitude and I’ll encourage you with the same!

Laurie Tema-Lyn

Practical Imagination Enterprises

Musings on being a “Meeting Fairie”
January 5, 2011

I was tickled to read yesterday’s e-newsletter from Seth Godin titled…”Making meetings more expensive…might actually make them cost less.”

Seth encourages that organizations hire a “meeting fairie” in order to ensure that meetings are short, efficient and effective.

Yeah! That’s been my argument for the past 25 years as I’ve worked with hundreds (maybe thousands?) of clients to help them accomplish more than they would have on their own while enjoying the process of creative collaboration.

Seth’s list has all the nuts and bolts of running great meetings covered—like making sure that there is a clear purpose, managing the flow of information and following up to ensure implementation, but he doesn’t talk specifically about the art and science of harnessing a team’s best thinking to get creative and actionable results. That’s what we do, drawing upon a wealth of experience and a wellspring of tools and techniques –many of which I’m writing about in an upcoming book.

We creative catalyst/facilitators love what we do! Now, perhaps I should consider a name change to “Fairie”?

Thanks for the boost Seth!

Laurie Tema-Lyn
Practical Imagination Enterprises