Open Source Innovation: What's In and What's Out

Benjamin Franklin saw that there were uses and applications for his inventions outside of his original intentions. He understood that the only way to fully realize that vision was to make it everyone's. What started out as Franklin's invention became the world's collective creation.

The Innovator's Storybook: Creativity and the Well-Told Tale

Novelists go through years of drafts and workshops before they end up with the best version of their work. Innovators are also perpetual revisers who incessantly rework and reimagine the stories behind their ideas. The person you might think is your villain just might turn out to be your hero.

The Good, the Bad, and the Future of Creative Collaboration

Collaboration offers us a whole new set of opportunities for growth, but it also presents myriad difficulties.

How Rules and Bureaucracy Breed Innovation

Here's the thing that innovators tend to forget: bureaucracy is our friend. The rules and regulations of any organization are also the forces that unwittingly create whitespaces, the opportunities to break new boundaries.

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.”

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