Most people think the way you create an idea is to start with a well-formed problem and then brainstorm a solution to it. What if you turned that around 180 degrees? It sounds counter-intuitive, but you really can innovate by starting with the solution and then work backwards to the problem.
SIT is a collection of five techniques and a set of principles to help generate quality ideas on demand. One of the challenges you can have is deciding which technique to use. So here are some rules of thumb to get you started.
It's that time of year for holiday gift giving, and you may want to select gifts that have creativity patterns embedded inside them. These inventions tend to survive through time because consumers find most appealing.
As you listen to the Voices of Creativity, see if you can spot their archetype. Who are the leading Creativity Preachers in our creativity community, for example? Also, ask yourself: what is your archetype? Which do you aspire to become? Most importantly, how will you get there?
With so many successful products created through serendipity, it makes you wonder whether companies can rely on it to create breakthrough products. The answer is no. Serendipity, as a method of innovation, has a very poor track record. The number of serendipitous products is a tiny percentage of the total of all products.
You can boost your creative output by changing the resolution around a problem. Think of it like the lens on a camera. You see a completely different view by zooming closer in or by zooming far away. Changing your "lens" reveals new creative solutions.
Here are the classics on creativity, those books that actually teach how to do it versus those books that just talk about it. Caution: these are not “light reads,” but they’re the ones I’ve learned the most from.
The nine-dot puzzle and the phrase “thinking outside the box” became metaphors for creativity and spread like wildfire in marketing, management, psychology, the creative arts, engineering, and personal improvement circles. One problem: It's wrong.
New research that studied the peak creative output of painters suggests that the two-thirds point in our lifespans, the so-called Golden Ratio, may be the peak creative point in time. But what happens leading up to that moment? And, what do we do once we've past it?
Betty Crocker’s egg teaches us a powerful lesson about consumer psychology. Many other companies sell goods and services that come prepackaged. They too might be able to innovate with the Subtraction technique by taking out a key component and adding back a little activity for the consumer.
Dr. Jacob Goldenberg, creativity researcher and co-author of Inside the Box: A Proven System of Creativity for Breakthrough Results (Simon & Schuster, 2013), shares his story about the surprises that await us when we look into The Closed World.
Language and creativity are inseparable. Language puts meaning to our ideas, be it spoken, written, or symbolic. We convey ideas to others which is essential for innovation. Innovation would be nearly impossible if we did not have language.
Many have studied and commented on the contributions of the Beatles and the lessons learned. And in the end, it was their prolific use of structured innovation templates that made their contributions possible.
Fixedess is our inability to imagine an object doing anything other than what is was intended for. Fixedness blocks our ability to generate novel, breakthrough ideas as a result. If we want to be more creative, we all require a systematic thinking tool to break fixedness.
An idea stands a better chance of surviving if it is not attributed to the individual who conceived it. Otherwise, the idea carries with it all the baggage and perception of its owner, good or bad. During idea evaluation, people struggle separating their feelings about the creator from the idea itself. If they like the person, they like their idea...and vice versa.
Look at your current products and services to see if they could be explained by one of the five patterns of the S.I.T. method. If so, you are more innovative than you think. You need to take the next step by using the method in a systematic and purposeful way.
The words we use to name or describe objects create Functional Fixedness. It becomes hard for us to imagine the object performing other functions. To break fixedness, use a systematic creativity method.
Creativity hides inside the box, not outside as many believe. For thousands of years, inventors have embedded five simple patterns into their inventions, usually without knowing it. These patterns are the DNA of products that can be extracted and applied to any product or service to create new-to-the-world innovations. Using these patterns in a systematic way allows anyone to boost their creative output--on demand.