Posts Tagged ‘challenge’

Taking away degrees of freedom to rekindle the innovative spirit

August 26, 2011 3 comments

“Necessity is the mother of invention.” Plato.

My son came back from a trip during which he broke a guitar string that he could not replace. He was actually delighted with the experience, having had to invent a different way of playing the instrument, discovering new harmonies. With one string missing, he had to work out the other to a whole new level. Read more…


The challenge precedes the innovation

March 12, 2011 1 comment

“The mere formulation of a problem is far more essential than its solution, which may be merely a matter of mathematical or experimental skills. To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle requires creative imagination and marks real advances in science.”

Albert Einstein

VW drives concept car through shrinking window of opportunity

At a corporate conference I attended earlier this year, a top-executive keynote speaker used the term “shrinking windows of opportunity” to describe a world where change is happening at such a fast pace on such a large scale that there is less and less time to think before you jump: if you think a minute too long, others will have already gone through the window of opportunity and closed it behind them. Read more…

May the (lateral) force be with us

December 17, 2010 Leave a comment

In its simplest form, the status quo can be represented as two forces of the same magnitude applied in opposite directions. They compensate each other, such that nothing move.

Then imagine a small lateral force being applied that tilts the two opposite forces from their axis. All of a sudden, the equilibrium (or status quo) is disrupted and movement starts.

What’s more, the two formerly opposite forces now literally join forces (at least partly) to add to the momentum created: what used to create status quo now accelerates the movement. Read more…

Join the challenge: knowing when the end is nigh

August 11, 2010 Leave a comment

All companies – whether they make cars, electronics, software, etc. – know that there is only so much new life that they can breathe into their existing products by introducing new improved versions. Ultimately any product will reach the end of its life, and a brand new one will have to be launched in its stead.

The critical question is: when?

Read more…

Innovation lessons from crime author Roger-Guy Ulrich

August 10, 2010 Leave a comment

Since 1987, Roger-Guy Ulrich has written nine successful crime thrillers around his favourite character, police detective Erwan Le Morvan who operates in the Saint-Malo area in Brittany, France. In an interview with Ouest France, he gives away one of his secret recipes:

‘On the basis of a single idea, I build a very rough scenario, of which I know the end. Then, I get started with no specific plan: the characters join in, and often take the lead. Sometimes it feels like I’m discovering the story as I write it‘. Read more…

Cooking with the seasons: chef’s creativity insights

April 11, 2010 Leave a comment

Back from a great two days of conferences at La cité de la réussite 2010 event in Paris, on the theme “Re-inventing everything?”. At one of the conferences, Michelin-starred chefs Alain Passard and Ferran Adria shared insights about their creativity.

Creative challenge

Passard uses cooking with the seasons as a way to frame the creative challenge in a natural and meaningful way. In a world where globalisation Read more…