The Secret to Teaching Creativity

The secret to teaching creativity is simply to surround students with people who are creating.

Using the Right Innovation Tool for the Right Innovation Job

The strategies you use to market a breakthrough new product will not help you re-conceptualize the way you build an old one. So how do you decide which tool to use when it comes to your innovation project? Here are three factors to consider.

The Myth of Creativity On-Demand

Creativity will never be an item on a pull-down menu you can click to activate on-demand--creativity demands you. That doesn't mean you should just sit around waiting for a creative impulse.

The Best Way to Look for the Next Big Thing

Pay attention. Look up, look down, look all around yourself. Look for the things that other people don't see. Chances are if you see an obvious occasion to innovate, other people see it, too.

Positive Thinking: A Brief User's Guide

The challenge is a seeming paradox: generate positivity and then control that same positivity. The art of smart optimism is a careful balancing act, a measure of enthusiasm and restraint--a flash of a dream with a dose of reality.

The Future Has Come and Gone: You Just Missed It

So what's the big so what? The very institutions that have defined how we lead in our modern world are being abandoned or morphed into new forms. We need to run a wider array of experiments to learn what really works and doesn't in the undiscovered country.

The Inverse Innovation Cycle: How Failure Becomes Success

It may be true that a checklist will help you reach an opportunity more efficiently.

Critics Make the Best Innovation Evangelists

If you don't encounter any resistance, then you're likely doing it wrong: you need to take more risks and increase the speed and magnitude of your project. The wonder of it all is that your most relentless adversary just might turn out to be your greatest ally.

Why Courage Is More Important Than Creativity

A crisis is the perfect start to your revolution. When an organization is at its most vulnerable point, it is also most poised to rebuild itself.

How to Develop the Next Generation of Innovators

With time and a little luck, we will gain momentum and begin to re-establish our creative culture and become more inclusive. Who knows? Our best and brightest might just prove old Joe Schumpeter wrong and find a way to balance democracy and meritocracy here in America.

What Are You Willing to Give Up to Get Innovation?

The required skills for our innovation economy will require us to purposefully apply our creativity. In your world that is strapped for time and resources, are you willing to deviate from the efficiency of your routine to create something extraordinary?

The Top Innovations We Should've Seen in 2014

Of course these are just the beginning. What about a reverse crowd-sourcing app that takes money away from people with stupid ideas? Because for every Kickstarter, we also need a Kickstopper.

How to Lead Innovation Like a Superhero

Innovation is not about alignment. It is about constructive conflict--positive tension. What happens when pragmatic thinkers work with big-picture thinkers? What happens when the quick thinkers meet the patient thinkers?

The Upside of Discovering Your Incompetencies

Whether you're a finance guru or a marketing mastermind, we all really have only one thing that we're exceptional at.

Need to Get Creative? How to Create an Idea Space

Don't expect fast, quantifiable results. Be patient as you build your sanctuary. Remember that the predictability of routine is what you're getting away from. In an idea space, chaos is your friend.

How to Do More With Less

In our age where big data reigns, it's easier than ever to find out what's going wrong. And it's just as easy to quickly model the things that we can do to fix these mistakes. Innovation doesn't always have to be radical.

How to Weed Out Projects That Aren't Worth Your Time

Think of the portfolio as a funnel: you launch many ideas at the beginning but, as you measure and compare their current and future values, you hold on to just a few. In the end, only the fittest will survive.

How to Jump-Start Radical Change in Your Company

Closure is overrated. Don't flip to end of the book right away. Understand that the messiness of the middle is the best part of the story.

How to Find Your Next Super Star Employee

Next, test for the right abilities: as part of the evaluation process, ask each candidate to spend some time working or meeting with the team. Be sure to orient your new hires adequately. This means apprenticing them to advisers who exemplify your company's values and practices.

The Low-Risk Way to Design Breakthrough Products

The goal is not to avoid failure but to accelerate the failure cycle with low risk of impact. Most early simulations and prototypes will inevitably fail. But these will move you closer and faster toward the product that will work.

The Key to Creating Partnerships That Work

The best partnerships produce something new that could not be produced by any one partner individually. Effective partners work actively to maintain a good rapport. Rapport can't be bought; it comes through working together and establishing trust.

How to Turn Conflict Into Creativity

Harmony is overrated. Innovation is about bringing together individuals with diverse strengths who can push against each other and build something collaboratively that they never would've come up with on their own.

How to Create Better Ideas Faster

Have you ever tried to get your team to brainstorm a breakthrough idea for a product or service only to find the process mostly yields extensions of existing ideas? Research on creative thinking gives us four simple suggestions that will greatly aid in generating great ideas in a short period of time: Fluency, Flexibility, Freedom, and Flow

Innovation: Hide Inside Trojan Horses

To free up resources and encourage the will to grow, the established order and decorum must be turned back upon itself to nurture and nourish our opportunities for reinvention. The key is not denying it but working through it to get beyond it.

Innovation: Hedge First, Optimize Later

Only the perfect walk in straight lines from hither to yon and only the trenchant believe in perfect people. The path to the future is ever winding and walked by those brave irregulars who constantly shift their weight and correct their course.

Innovation: Master the Art of SODOTO

Pragmatist philosopher, John Dewey, initiated the Progressive Education movement that would be the foundation for reform in teaching methods in the United States and Western Europe after the War. He believed that we “learn by doing” because “failure is instructive.”

Innovation: Devise With Revisionary Eyes

Politicians use the term “revisionist” (or “flip-flop”) to label challenger and foe alike as a liar or as inconstant as a horse midstream. Of course this claim is absurd given that most intractable wars, intolerable religious practices and counterproductive laws are the result of sticking to a tired idea or outmoded philosophy.

Innovation Starts in Dark Places

Why does innovation often start in dark places? When you’re working in the fringes, the normal risks and rewards associated with radical change suddenly become different: you have a lot less to lose, but you can also gain a lot more.

What Innovation Doesn’t Solve

I’ve been thinking a lot about the big dreams and grand visions of my distant relative, Robert Fair DeGraff—a publishing innovator who co-founded Pocket Books in 1939.

Digital Natives v. Digital Immigrants

The irony is that, eventually, we will come full circle: The children of digital natives will act like digital immigrants. This is just how things work: We see the world differently from the people who came before us.