Open Thinkering


Innovation, productivity and frames of reference

A lot of people get stuck in the trap of trying to create something that is really innovative, something that doesn’t exist in the world today. But the truth is that an innovation that is really supercreative, that has resonance and power plus the ability to do extremely well in the marketplace, is already part of a clear set of products that already exists. In other words, they have a clear context, but there’s something novel about the way that an innovation is being thought about that really shifts the paradigm.

(DeVito, A. (2006) ‘Constantly Experiment’ in Winsor, J. (ed.) Spark: be more innovative through co-creation, p.162-3)

I’m reading the Spark at the moment, a book sent to me by Online MBA after ‘winning’ a competition (I commented on their blog). Spark is a great read with contributions from people who work at extremely innovative organisations such as Oakley, Nike and Herman Miller.

My belief that innovation thrives upon a bedrock of standardisation has been reinforced through the stories and experiences shared in the book. In other words, people have to have time freed up so they can kick ass. That comes through increased productivity, through streamlining – and to a great extent, automating – the mundane, the procedural and the administrative.

As a tangent, I’ve decided that the final version of #uppingyourgame is going to be subtitled ‘a personal guide to productivity’. Positive feedback from non-educators has convinced me that the ideas it contains are more widely applicable! 😀

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