Whenever I try to conjure up what innovation looks like, the same slideshow of images clicks across my mind: that photo of Einstein with his tongue sticking out, Edison with his light bulb, Steve Jobs onstage in his black turtleneck, introducing...
"Google provides resources — infrastructure, money, time and people — but most important, a vision that tests most entrepreneurs to think bigger than they ever have before."
At General Electric, A Culture of Risk
"we literally measure employees based on their capacity to take risks in championing ideas, learn from the experience and drive improvement."
At DreamWorks, Permission to Switch Gears "We feel it is critical to empower employees to take risks, move boundaries and test the limits of their imagination. Simply put: individuals must be allowed to fail in order to innovate."
There is an interesting article from Jonah Lehrer over at Wired. He looks at a recent study that asked subjects to predict outcomes for 8 different events - those who people who trusted their feelings were more likely to predict the outcomes.
"At their core, all business models address this questions: how do we sustainably deliver value to our customers? In this instance, the sustainable part refers to your organisation – how can you deliver value so that you’re still around in the future?"
"Strange as it may seem, overcoming geographic obstacles, winning decisive battles or meeting global business targets are the type of goals often best achieved when pursued indirectly. This is the idea of Obliquity. Oblique approaches are most effective in difficult terrain, or where outcomes depend on interactions with other people."
Emotional innovation is the turning of our talents inward toward self-articulation, toward personal growth. At the center of emotional innovation is personal artistry. Any one of us can be an artist in the work we do if we approach it creatively. That requires us to think of ourselves as artists, which in turn elevates our standards within our work.
Think of the people you know in your life who work what you might consider to be rather mundane jobs, and yet they LOVE what they do and exhibit admirable passion. The Starbucks barista who loves delivering you the perfect cup of coffee with a smile that sets your day off in a positive direction. The health insurance salesman who knows everything about health care reform and loves educating you about it so you can make informed decisions for your employees.
But what really stumped me ... is the dissonance between the reaction many people have about innovation in their organization, and their wondrous, blithe acceptance of innovation from other firms or individuals. It’s almost as if most of us have bifurcated minds – absolutely rejecting the possibility of innovation WITHIN our organizations while simultaneously DEMANDING innovation from other firms.
Every person who “yes buts” an idea in a conference room while texting on an iPhone or Android should take a long look in the mirror. We have met the enemy of innovation and he is us.
Some time ago, artist and writer Austin Kleon — one of my favorite thinkers, a keen observer of and participant in the creative economy of the digital age — was invited to give a talk to students, the backbone for which was a list of 10 things he wished he’d heard as a young creator...
Brrriiinnng. The alarm clock buzzes in another hectic weekday morning. You leap out of bed, rush into the shower, into your clothes and out the door with barely a moment to think. A stressful commute gets your blood pressure climbing.
Everything about the way we start our day runs counter to the best conditions for thinking creatively
In his new book, Imagine, Jonah Lehrer explores the art and science of original thinking — from Shakespearean tragedies to the invention of masking tape to Nike's "Just Do It" campaign. And when you get stuck?
Hear the NPR interview of Jonah Lehrer or read the summary notes.
In his new book, Need, Speed and Greed: How the New Rules of Innovation Can Transform Businesses, Propel Nations to Greatness and Tame the..., Vijay Vaitheeswaran argues that we’re thinking about worldchanging innovation all wrong: It’s not going to come from where we expect it.
The image of the 'creative type' is a myth. Jonah Lehrer on why anyone can innovate—and why a hot shower, a cold beer or a trip to your colleague's desk might be the key to your next big idea. From Imagine: How Creativity Works.
Sometimes your weaknesses (procrastination and anxiety) may actually be the 'red-hot coal stuck in the throat' that summons your superpowers. Or as Bob Moesta writes, 'The moment of struggle is the defining act of innovation.'"
If you're trying to make an important decision while the baby is crying, the boss is shouting on the phone and the cat has chosen this moment to think outside the box, you might want to take a breather and wait.
It's counterintuitive, but under stress we tend to focus more on the rewards than on the risks of any decision.
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