Tag Archives: problem solving

5 reasons why ethnography is not going to become mainstream anytime soon

It seems that since design thinking and lean startup methodologies have a “talk to potential customers to validate” component, it may seem that ethnography is becoming mainstream.

It isn’t.

In my opinion, of all the innovation techniques available to an innovation practitioner, entrepreneur, marketer or business leader none is more important than getting out on the field and observing people in their domains. And, we have ways to go before this ever becomes mainstream.

why asking why is so damn important

Why asking ‘WHY’ is so damn important

why asking why is so damn important

We all think we know how most of the things we work with a on a daily basis work. Take for example your computer, how does it work? How does the screen display those icons? How does the mouse/keypad work? How does the computer know when you’ve written on the keyboard?

To answer these questions we could easily go to Wikipedia or HowStuffWorks and find out everything there is to know about computers, including how they work. But most of the explanations you’ll find are very simplistic, they’ll give you the basics. What they won’t tell you is ‘why’ they work this way. Why it is the way it is.

And that’s exactly the types of answers we should be looking for because we think we understand how most things work, but the truth is we don’t. We have an illusion of how things work.

Use constraints to fuel your creativity

Quickly, think of as many white things as you can in ten seconds.  Now think of white things in your kitchen.  Did the more constrained prompt spark more ideas? Yes.

Recent research on the best approach to creating novel things says that . In other words, constraints help you focus on what matters.

Apple knows that . Google is popular for which have resulted in ‘perceived innovations’ in user experience. The ever popular 37 Signals, maker of online business management apps, pretty much .

So, how does placing constraints to fuel creativity look like?

How to look at a challenge from different angles

thinking from different angles

Questions are the key to opening the mind

Last night, I was browsing Planet of the Apes movie download excellent and I started reading the ,which I found very insightful. I found some more gems in the comments, so I added my 2 cents and got a great response and thought I should post it here.

When presented with a challenge, knowing what to ask is the difference between doing more of the same and doing something extraordinary. The Phoenix Checklist  of questions was developed by the CIA to encourage agents to look at a challenge from different angles.