InventiveLabs breaks program into 6 month exploration blocks

New structure allows greater financial flexibility for attendees

One of our key learnings from our first year of operations is that redefining some of the elements of our program may lead to better engagement and an acceleration of overall goal achievement. Additionally, we have uncovered that our Inventives tend to take multiple paths after going through the initial brainstorming and idea formations stages. Some end up going down the path of looking for investment for their ideas; others are moving into the building and delivery phases of their ideas followed by the formation of a smaller, self-funded businesses. Finally, some find that they have figured out their passion and are considering re-entering college if a degree is useful for achieving their goals.

Seeing how the program has evolved, we have decided to split the program into 6 month phases giving Inventives multiple paths to completion. The first phase is a 6 month discovery phase that goes from passion exploration and brainstorming to idea creation and prototyping, culminating in either a Kickstarter project to gain an indication of commercial viability or an executive summary for a business plan. After completing the initial 6 months the Inventive can choose to attend the optional advanced phase of the program if that is a logical next step. 

In the advanced phase of the program, they can choose one of four tracks:

  1. The first track would be to take their business ideas to investors which includes creation of the pitch deck describing their business in full, prepping their presentations, investor presentations and then finally, if successful, company formation and launch.
  2. The second track takes the Inventive through the process of forming their own company using funds readily available from friends and family or from a successful crowdsourcing exercise in the discovery phase.
  3. The third track is for the Inventive that does not really want to run a company but may like to profit from their ideas. In this phase, the Inventive will prep their idea and promote it to individuals or companies that may like to create and sell their idea for them.  This is typically done with a licensing deal. 
  4. The fourth track available is for Inventives that have built a successful prototype, and have market tested it in some way, demonstrating a need to take it to full production. In this track the Inventive will either figure out how to manufacture it themselves or find an outsourcing partner. They will also look for a distribution partner to take it to market if they are not going to sell it directly themselves.


Finally, if they feel like they have accomplished their goals after 6 months in the program, they can move on by themselves on whatever path they choose - starting a business on their own, simply selling what they made or even re-entering college after figuring out their passion.

We believe by shortening the duration of some of the initial phases and bringing some of the decision points in our process sooner, the prospect of completing these goals will actually increase with the Inventives. This may be counter-intuitive for most people, but for people who understand our community we think this will make complete sense. Heat and light on completing a task that is imminent produces better results than a far off task with lots of ambiguity.

This change also gives people more flexibility financially. Some have expressed concerns about whether they would be able to stick with the program for an entire year and actually achieve a deliverable. This adjustment allows people to work towards an earlier goal and make sure the program is actually working for them before re-upping and continuing on. At the 6 month mark, they can make the call as to whether to continue based on a firm knowledge of the value of their "passion".

So now we have made it even easier to "Join us!". Explore our website to see if the Lab is right for you!




Necessary Brilliance

Below is an excerpt from Dr. Ned's Hallowell's newsletter where InventiveLabs Co-founder Rick Fiery was featured as the guest writer for the opening article in the newsletter:

Inventive Labs Helps Gifted, Talented People Find Their Passion

This month’s Note from Ned is not from Ned, but from my dear friend Rick Fiery, who is a pioneer in helping young people with ADHD, whom he names “Inventives.”  I’d like to see ADHD renamed Inventive, wouldn’t you?

His institute, which he describes, is heaven on earth for people who can’t do college but who have lots of talent and ambition.  I also urge you to go to their Kickstarter page and view the projects Rick’s amazing Inventives are developing. I urge you to check it out - Inventive Labs.



Necessary Brilliance

Society is at a crossroads. College is becoming more expensive and more selective every year, while the pool of applicants continues to grow. Test scores required to get into respected colleges have skyrocketed, as have the requirements to demonstrate an effort to save the world by the time you are 17. And, if you struggle with reading, writing or mathematical skills because of ADHD and/or dyslexia, making it through college is even harder. Our society has become hyper-focused on attaining a college degree, leaving many people who learn differently on the outside looking in.

Now, let’s talk about the workplace. Prior to online job boards, you could show up at a company with your resume and possibly get an audience. Today’s world is different. HR systems weed out resumes using algorithms that search for keywords. Guess what the number one keyword is? You guessed it – college degree. If you have a learning difference and were unable to complete the degree, it is likely your resume won’t even get looked at. You may have been the one who did save the world and most companies would never know.

So this is where society faces its challenge. People with ADHD have a difficult time completing the standard college regime; it is not built for them. As Dr. Hallowell has explained, it is for people with attention-surplus disorder. Consequently, some of our most brilliant and creative thinkers in this world are being put in the penalty box because of the box they cannot tick – college degree.   As I am sure many readers of this newsletter are aware, there are many famous entrepreneurs, entertainers, sports heroes, etc. who are ADHD and/or dyslexic. Some of them did not finish college. At an event at our research center, Dr. Hallowell gave a fantastic presentation describing these types of people and their struggles. (You can view it here on our YouTube channel.) These struggles are not necessary.

Our view is that society is sidelining what we call “necessary brilliance”. Necessary brilliance is embodied by the intellect, creativity and contributions that people with learning differences can provide to the world if they are given the opportunity to do so. Right now, they are not being given that opportunity. Look around at all the bright young people who are living back home with their parents. Some of them were valedictorians, leads in the high school play, class presidents or star athletes who now consider themselves failures. They are not. They just need to find a different path to success.

At InventiveLabs, it is our mission to change this paradigm. Instead of asking people with ADHD to change their behavior to meet society’s expectations and blend in, we are providing a platform for them to prove their worth by demonstrating their brilliance. InventiveLabs is a place for people who learn differently to explore their passions and figure out a way to become successful doing what they love in an environment of acceptance. Tom Bergeron and I have experience with creating and growing businesses over the last 20 years. We, along with a community of successful businesspeople, guide them to their end goal: starting a company, joining a company that fulfills their passion or actually re-entering the right college once they know what they want to do with their lives. Whatever their passion is, we support them. We even have highly successful angel investors, some of whom are likely ADHD themselves (imagine that!), ready to invest in good ideas coming out of the lab.

Our current team of Inventives (our attendees) are working on things such as a fictional novel, a new beachwear business, a new retail store, temporary covers for outdoor equipment, kitchen accessories, and apps for mobile devices. To give you some perspective on the types of people we attract, one of our Inventives played netball for the Australian National Team. Another was integral to the growth of a major YouTube channel for Minecraft. Another is the great grandson of Igor Sikorsky (of helicopter fame). Not one of them has completed college, but they have a lot to offer to the world!

Our Inventives are launching some new products on the Kickstarter crowdsourcing website. They have worked hard on creating their prototypes and are offering them for sale on the website. Pre-buying their products on Kickstarter will help them launch their first business if there is enough interest in their idea. It will also help InventiveLabs as we work to raise awareness and prove that our Inventives deserve to be noticed, and should not be stuck in menial jobs where they cannot contribute to the betterment of society. Help us demonstrate their necessary brilliance!

Visit our website at

Warm regards,

Rick Fiery