The Best Innovation is Done on Napkins

Recently I tried something really different at one of my workshops. To demonstrate the versatility of the 30 Minute Innovation method, which can be done with high tech, or even low tech methods, we wrote our ideas on actual napkins! Yes, the best ideas really are written on napkins.


Ten Ideas to Boost Your Creativity

Creativity and innovation are linked. Without creativity, there is no innovation. How can you spark creativity, over and over again?

Leo Babauta wrote a post on the zenhabits blog entitled, How Creativity Works, & How to Do It. He listed five ideas to help spark creativity:

  • Create time for solitude.
  • Search for interesting ideas.
  • Keep an idea file.
  • Reflect on ideas, apply them to your field.
  • Iterate on what you’ve come up with.

I’ll add five more:

  • Expose yourself to new sights and sounds. Legendary pop artist Peter Max, one of the most creative minds of our time, is said to have purchased

How to Convert Virtual Reality into Actual Reality

"Imagine you had a pair of magical goggles that would take you anywhere, instantly. Where would you go? ... What would you do? ... That's a powerful thought, and that's what VR can do."
That’s how Michael Abrash of Oculus described the immersive technology of virtual reality.
Imagine that you REALLY had a pair of magic goggles. They could REALLY take you anywhere, instantly. Where WOULD you go? What WOULD you do?
Grab some paper and a pen and try this:
  • Image that you are wearing these magical goggles. For two minutes, write all of the places you would go and things you would do.

Three Reasons Why You Should NOT Brainstorm

Connecting The Dots

Brainstorming is the process of "connecting the dots"–the right dots. If brainstorming is approached without properly framing the question, problem, or opportunity, the wrong dots might get connected. Even worse, instead of connections, the result may be disconnects.

Here are three reasons why you shouldn't brainstorm:

You're desperate

Desperate people do desperate things, and then they must live with the consequences. They tend to focus more on satisfying the immediate need than establishing the best overall direction.

Together WE CAN Innovate!

There's an old joke about a dog chasing a car–he'll never catch it, and even if he ever did, he wouldn't know what to do with it!

Innovators obsessively watch for signs of change, because change brings opportunity. But what do they do when they find it? They toss it into the can–the WE CAN! I’m not talking about an actual can–I'm talking about the systematic innovation practices described in the acronym "WE CAN."

We often say that innovation is more like panning for gold than alchemy. Innovation is systematic work, not the product of disorganization or magic.