Arthur Miller created the archetype of the insecure, self-deluded traveling salesman in his Pulitzer-Prize winning play, Death of a Salesman. I have my own Willy Loman story.
When I was in high school, I earned extra money by lugging around a sample case of candles and selling door to door. There were, of course, the easy marks; my parents and the next-door neighbors. Beyond the comfortable confines of my immediate neighborhood, it ...Continue Reading ?
Inotivities #1. Sherwin’s ABCs.
So what’s an Inotivity? It’s any activity that helps you become more creative and innovative. Here’s one that was inspired by David Sherwin, Senior Interaction Designer at frog design. The challenge is to create a typeface that will be composed of found elements right around you. In an Inotivity workshop I only have participants create A-E. But if you want to go for the whole 26 –kudos to ...Continue Reading ?
The high cost of discount thinking.
When I was in high school, I heard a story on the radio, which has stayed with me for over twenty years. The short version is that a young man from the country went to Cornell to get his degree in agriculture. When he returned home, he saw a neighbor hard at work on his farm. The young man said to the older farmer, “You know I can show you smarter ways to improve your yield and rotate crops for ...Continue Reading ?
Don’t own your problem, pass it on.
One of my favorite writers and thinkers is Dan Pink. This Summer, Dan has sequestered
himself in a office somewhere in Virginia –steadily working on his new book: To Sell is Human:
The Surprising Truth about Moving Others.
Recently, Dan wrote Flip — 16 Counter Intuitive Ideas About Motivation, Innovation and Leadership. At the end of this blog, I will show you how you can get a copy from Dan’s Website.
Dan collected and refined this manifesto ...Continue Reading ?
The Worst Kept Secrets of Thinking Big
A few years ago, I led a creative session and I opened with an old Japanese Proverb, “None of us are as smart as all of us.”
I told the group that when I first heard this bromide at an innovation seminar in Chicago, I didn’t have the expected reaction. I said, have you watched C-span lately? Have you been ever been on a committee? Have you listened to talk radio?
Creative collaboration isn’t just a two-edged sword, it’s one of those ...Continue Reading ?
Lessons on the road to innovation.
Inotivity has been on an extended road trip. Less Hunter Thompson and more Thomas Edison.
Our team has traveled to Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Nashville and Chicago working with organizations and companies on boosting their creativity and innovation. In Chicago, we helped a client generate 750 ideas in less than 30 minutes.
In DC, my partner company (Seriously Creative) and I met with government officials on how to develop an innovation mindset as they work and develop initiatives for the coming year.
In Nashville, ...Continue Reading ?
Empowering innovative spirits
Digital watches were ignored by Swiss watch makers. Radial tires were not developed by Goodyear or B.F. Goodrich, they were developed by a small French tire company, Michelin.
Overnight package delivery was not innovated by UPS or an airline company, it came from Federal Express, a product of a thesis. Light beer wasn’t introduced by the King of Beers or Miller, it came from a chemist name Joseph L. Owades and it was originally marketed as Gablinger’s Diet Beer.
Amazon didn’t emerge ...Continue Reading ?
A Creativity Test for People who hate Creativity Tests.
A creativity test is a bit like a flu shot.
The anticipation is often more painful than the actual experience.
So, I’m only asking for one minute. 60 seconds. You’ll love yourself later.
Look at this figure. It is a square defined by four dots. Classically, a square is a rectangle with four equal sides and four 90? angles.
Now for the test. Try and move two dots to create a square twice as ...Continue Reading ?
An Exercise in Changing Your Company
Image via Wikipedia
A few weeks ago, SeriouslyCreative and Inotivity helped a major company disrupt themselves.
It was a disruption day.
A day for them to ask questions that they typically don’t ask themselves. A day to look at how conventional thinking has helped them achieve ...Continue Reading ?
Inotivity on ideas vs. insights.
The real currency of innovation is ideas.
And while every insight is an idea.
Not every idea is an insight.
The late chairman of the advertising agency BBDO, Phil Dusenberry made the idea vs. insight subject the cornerstone of his terrific book, Then We Set His Hair on Fire.
“Ideas are a dime a dozen; anyone can have them. They can be good ...Continue Reading ?