Swae Wins Top Award at 2021 ExO Transformation Awards

Swae Wins Top Award at 2021 ExO Transformation Awards


Swae wins 1st place in the 2021 ExO 2021 Transformation Awards in the “New Company” Category (this category is for organizations less than 3 years old at the time of the application that used the “ExO framework” to launch their business).

Silicon Valley’s Salim Ismail, the former Head of Innovation at Yahoo and founder of Silicon Valley innovation hub Singularity University, lays out what he believes makes an exponential organization is (or, as he calls them, an ExO and the driver behind the ExO community and this award) in his Amazon best-seller, Exponential Organizations.

The foundation to this is simple. Rather than increasing human capital or physical assets, the most successful 21st-century companies leverage information and technology to achieve rapid expansion in pursuit of what Ismail calls “Massive Transformational Purpose” (MTP). In doing so, he describes that they’re able to scale their business strategies, culture, framework, and purpose at the same rate as technology.

Swae was chosen as an award winner as a new company that used the ExO framework to launch utilizing four main ExO attributes: algorithms, engagement, dashboards + interfaces, and community + crowd. This “new company” category is for organizations less than 3 years old at the time of the application that used the “ExO framework” to launch their business.

Let’s break these down a bit further as to how Swae uses the Exponential Organization attributes to emulate an Exponential Organization themselves:


Swae’s technology platform leverages NLP algorithms to help its users write better, clearer, more objective, and persuasive proposals for the ideas that they have. This helps users increase their chances of having their ideas heard, collaborated on by other colleagues, and potentially acted upon by leadership. We also plan to use algorithms in the future to help predict what ideas are likely to trend and gain momentum before they actually do, who future leaders might be based on their patterns of engagement, and what the sentiment of the organization may say about future attrition and retention rates.


Swae leverages the engagement of the crowd as a filtering function. Engagement fuels the escalation metrics and achievements of the ideas that help efficiently and transparently signal which ideas deserve the attention of leaders/management and review ideas that still need some more work. Updates in the future will include are expansion to use a reputation system and additional gamification elements to keep users interested, involved, and increasingly committed.

Dashboards & Interfaces

Being a SaaS startup, we leverage good UX/UI and dashboards to share pertinent knowledge about user activity on the platform. Our dashboards help managers and leaders get real-time activity and trend information.

Community & Crowd

In the not-so-distant future, Swae will massively leverage the “Community & Crowd” aspect to invite those who are passionate about our MTP to be more directly involved in the main functions of Swae as an organization.

The bottom-line results and key metrics that Swae has achieved as a result of implementing ExO frameworks as a new company launching into the market, Swae was able to:

  1. Increase the Innovation Pipeline sourcing investable innovation ideas
  2. Create impactful Revenue Growth and Cost Reduction opportunities for Swae’s clients
  3. Correlate a direct causal link between positively increasing employees engagement, motivation, happiness, and retention as a consequence of having access to Swae
  4. Create many other intangible benefits

About Swae:

Swae is a SaaS platform that helps turn stakeholder voices into actionable proposals to fuel smarter decision-making and drive organizational innovation and improvement. Our tech helps organizations be radically inclusive while being selective about the ideas that they choose to invest in.

The AI integration that Swae uses helps users turn their suggestions and feedback into well-structured proposals. The combination of collective intelligence features, escalation metrics, and workflows help utilize the crowdsourcing aspect to both help improve ideas collaboratively while filtering the signal from the noise, making innovation discovery much more efficient, meritocratic, transparent, and inclusive.

EMC Insurance x Swae: Unleashing workforce creativity & crowdsourcing ideas to drive culture and strategic innovation initiatives

EMC Insurance x Swae: Unleashing workforce creativity & crowdsourcing ideas to drive culture and strategic innovation initiatives

Swae pilot program launched to help demonstrate that employee feedback and insights can drive business performance and that hearing all voices is an essential ingredient for an evolving culture and workplace.

EMC Insurance Companies was founded in 1911 and is built on more than 110 years of serving policyholders and independent insurance agents. EMC employs more than 2,400 employees in 19 locations across the United States and is in the top 60 property/casualty organizations and is one of the largest in Iowa, based on net written premium. (Source: https://www.emcins.com/)

Over the years, EMC developed a perspective about what innovation means to them: it is more than technology: innovation is about building a culture of trust and encouraging innovative thinking by empowering employees and discovering unique ways that strengthen the organization and serve customers in new ways.

To further these intentions, EMC and Swae will be working closely to leverage Swae’s platform and offline capabilities to help crowdsource ideas from a larger pool of employees, empower leadership across the enterprise to drive deeper collaboration efforts, and unleash more creativity for workplace improvement and innovation.

While there are a lot of ways to give employees a voice inside EMC currently — from engagement surveys to learning sessions and focus groups — there are gaps with these instruments in turning voice into action and potential decisions that lead to workplace improvement or innovation. Partnering with Swae is intended to fill these gaps by giving everyone a safe, formal, and merit-based process for expressing ideas, making decisions, and identifying potential solutions that can be prioritized efficiently with the help of the crowd and gain deeper engagement.

According to Mary Harvey, Business Innovation Specialist within EMC’s Innovation Team, “In this pilot, we are bringing team members together to shape the future of how we share ideas across EMC.”

Swae’s mission is to empower unheard voices within organizations to ensure that leaders can identify problems and hear about investable solutions quickly. Another driving goal is to help leaders hear the truth of what’s going on inside their organization so they can better prioritize and reduce the potential biases in important strategic decisions.

Swae’s driving goals is precisely what Angela Noble, Vice President of Innovation and Lead of EMC’s Innovation Team, is hoping the pilot program and platform will help EMC begin to achieve:

“We hope Swae will help us fill gaps by giving team members a voice and highlighting what’s most important to our people. This will also empower leadership to know what’s most important, respond to ideas and make decisions.

We know Swae can have a major impact in large companies like EMC on many levels — from encouraging deeper engagement, boosting morale and trust, to sourcing challenges and solutions to drive workplace improvement and the innovation strategy — all of which can truly transform the way leaders include others in sourcing challenges, finding solutions, and making better decisions faster. Some problems within large organizations can’t be discovered unless you have everyone’s input. From past implementations, by using Swae, leaders were able to hear problems they didn’t even know existed and unleashed the creativity of their own people to solve their organization’s problems.

EMC’s Innovation Leader Angela Noble has high expectations of Swae,

“We hope Swae is the platform that empowers team members to share ideas safely, enables leaders to understand team member priorities, and creates opportunities to respond and make decisions in an efficient, transparent way that supports the innovative culture we’re building at EMC. ”

We’re excited to help Angela, Mary, employees and the leadership at EMC achieve these results at the end of this pilot!

More to explore...
5 reasons why Polls and Surveys do more harm than good

5 reasons why Polls and Surveys do more harm than good

HOW TO GET GOOD FEEDBACK5 reasons why Polls and Surveys do more harm than good8 minute read December, 2021As hard as it may feel, it’s time to toss out your old approach to boosting engagement, unlocking hidden feedback, and generating good ideas (there’s a better...

Does Your Company Suffer from the Fear of Finding Out (FOFO)

Does Your Company Suffer from the Fear of Finding Out (FOFO)

FOFODoes Your Company Suffer from the Fear of Finding Out (FOFO)?8 Minute ReadThis cultural and psychological barrier could be stopping your company from uncovering the hidden challenges that could derail you on your track to successWhat is FOFO, the Fear of Finding...

Swae Partners With IdentityNORTH to Co-Create Their Virtual Summit

Swae Partners With IdentityNORTH to Co-Create Their Virtual Summit

How Swae is helping IdentityNORTH adapt their conference experience to a virtual summit due to the Covid-19 crisis


Over the past month, we’ve had the good fortune of meeting Krista Pawley and the incredible team from Imperative Impact, which is a high-touch advisory firm specializing in helping organizations design great cultures and stronger brands.

Imperative Impact designs and produces IdentityNORTH — a series of events and a community of innovators at the epicenter of digital identity and the digital economy of Canada. Leaders, companies, and big thinkers come together to in IdentityNORTH conferences to share and learn about the innovations that are shaping Canada’s digital future.

Their events touch on topics such as:

  • Digital ID & Authentication
  • Identity & Access Management (IAM) and Consumer Identity (CIAM)
  • The Digital Economy
  • Digital Transformation
  • Blockchain Tech
  • The “Internet of Things”
  • Emerging Standards and Technology
  • And many others…

    How Swae is helping IdentityNORTH adapt their conference experience to a virtual one due to the COVID-19 crisis

    This year, due to the risks and restrictions placed around large gatherings due to the COVID-19 crisis, IdentityNORTH has changed the flagship in-person summit into an entirely virtual experience.

    To ensure an equally positive and high-value experience for their participants online, IdentityNORTH partnered with Swae to bring the conference participants a pre-conference ideation and collaboration tool to help empower their virtual summit.


    How Swae will be utilized for the virtual summit



    In the weeks leading up to the conference as attendees register, they are invited to participate in co-creating the agenda for a portion of the conference, allowing the agenda to accurately reflect the attendee’s interests and learning goals.

    Using the Swae platform, attendees submit proposals for the “UnConference” portion of the event, sharing their big ideas for collaboration on the platform with other attendees. Together they will be able to select and join in on the conversation to vote for the ideas that interest them the most. The agenda ideas that gain the most crowdsourced comments, critical feedback, and votes by attendees are reviewed by the IdentityNORTH executive team and finalized based on a transparent set of criteria and metrics.

    The successful ideas and topics that are chosen and approved on the platform are turned into breakout sessions, essentially allowing the audience to dictate the content for the second day of the conference.

    The Swae platform allows conference organizers like IdentityNORTH to effortlessly gather ideas from the community to co-create the content while allowing attendees to have the ability to directly impact and shape the agenda. Rather than the typical one-directional survey, participants will be utilizing Swae to co-create ideas while allowing communities and groups to crowdsource ideas and make inclusive decisions seamless.

    The conference will take place from June 17–18, 2020, and all of us here at Swae are very excited about this partnership and the potential of supporting other conference organizers like IdentityNORTH. This is a huge opportunity to offer more inclusive experiences for attendees and conference organizers alike.



    Here’s how this all comes together: 

    If you desire to co-create your conference in the same way, click below and let us know more about you to set up a conversation with the Swae team!


    Pin It on Pinterest