Prospecting for Perspectives

Whether designing a business or working on a project, our thinking can sometimes get in a rut. If you are feeling the urge to drop everything and get away from the work  – DO!  Playing "hookey" can be good for business.


Doing something you don’t normally do or that is different from your normal work routine definitely gives you a break from the “work”.  It also opens you to new stimulus, which with a little intentional play can suggest new ways to think about something.


Hobbies, sports activities, politics, the arts all offer possibilities. The raw material for your creative process lies in the language, process and structures of the new activity. Then, it’s all about making connections and finding parallels.


Perhaps your hobby is gardening.  How do you think about gardening? What are the tools needed? How do you create a garden that blooms from early spring to late fall? What are the steps to prepare the soil?


Take your knowledge and wisdom around gardening (insert your stimulating activity here) and look at language, processes, steps, fundamentals and structures, then find ways to apply or overlay those with your business or project.  


In the case of gardening: What would "blooming all year" look like in your business? What is the connection between preparing the soil and the project you are working on? What needs tilled? What would be a good fertilizer? Are there weeds that need to be removed? What about dead heads? What are the annuals? What are the perennials? You get the idea.


Now go ahead and give it a try.  Take your hobby or something new you are learning or experiencing and find the connections with your business or project.


This process can give you new metaphors, new perspectives and even ideas for innovative new products or programs. AND, it gives you a solid business reason for taking time off!

Next Unboxed Brain April 20 – Keys to Creativity

Unboxed-GaryBertwistle It has
been said of Gary Bertwistle that he is like a shot of adrenalin to the right side of the
brain. He is a true thought leader, innovative pioneer and creativity expert in
Australia. He has written 4 books; Keys to Creativity, Who Stole My
Mojo, What Made You Think of That? and Vibe. He is also the creator of the
Ask Einstein Cards.


very excited to have him as our next guest on the UnBoxed Brain. Join me
tuesday 4/20 for a lively discussion on creativity and innovation.


Tuesday 4/20
4pm PT / 7pm ET via Teleconference bridgeline


Learn more and
register here

Creative or innovative?

I had a conversation with a colleague a couple of years ago and he said creativity doesn’t sell. In another  conversation more recently with my brother (an HR VP for a large company), it is clear that innovation does. So what the heck is the difference? To me, they are both about thinking differently and coming up with new approaches and solutions. Whether it’s in a work of art or a business plan, it didn’t seem to matter – in my mind the process is the same. Why do these two terms get such different responses? I’ve been letting this question simmer for awhile and just came across a book that offers the beginning of an answer. The Medici Effect by Frans Johansson.

I’ve just started to read it and I’m excited about what I’m reading so far, so you may be hearing more about it, but for now –  Fran Johansson offers this definition (paraphrased) which I find helpful.

To be considered creative an idea must be new AND it must be valuable (relevant). To be considered innovative – it must be realized – it has to be ‘sold’ to others in the world.

It’s a distinction that seems to fit in both worlds – that of the creative artist and that of business. A lot of new ideas get realized – I’m wondering if the pivotal part of the definition is that it must also be valuable/relevant. I think I’m going to sit with it awhile.

What do you think about creativity vs innovation?