Harnessing Ignorance to Spark Creativity | Fast Company

Chapter 13 of Weird Ideas That Work offers some guidelines for harnessing innovation:

  • During the early stages of a project, don’t study how the task has been approached in the company, industry, field, or region where you are working.
  • If you know a lot about a problem, and how it has been solved in the past, ask people who are ignorant it to study it and help solve it. Young people, including children, can be especially valuable for this task.
  • Ask new hires (especially those fresh out of school) to solve problems or do tasks that you “know” the answer to or you can’t resolve. Get out of the way for a while to see if they generate some good ideas.
  • Find analogous problems in different industries, and study how they are solved.
  • Find people working on analogous issues in different companies, fields, regions, fields, and industries, and ask them how they would solve the problem or do the job.
  • If people who have the right skills keep failing to solve some problem, try assigning some people with the wrong skills to solve it,
  • If you are a novice, seek experts to help you, but don’t assume they are right especially if they tell you they are right.

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