ReTHINK : Think Different

Posted by Genius tribes on 9:01 AM

“Why fit in when you were born to stand out?”
I was led to an interesting questions by my participants during my recent innovation leadership workshop. It's pretty interesting to share with the tribes on some of the thought.
Question : How much effort does it take to Think Different and why don't many people spend time doing it despite the fact that it is important for an organization ?

I prefer to refer to an interesting article in Harvard Business Review http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2011/09/begin_to_think_differently.html written by

Jeff Dyer and Hal Gregersen

Jeff Dyer is the Horace Beesley Professor of Strategy at the Marriott School, Brigham Young University; Hal Gregersen is a professor of leadership at INSEAD; They are the authors of the The Innovator’s DNA.

Let me break it down for you and this is some of the interesting details in the Harvard article.Neither Steve Jobs nor Apple nor any other high-profile innovator or company has a corner on the think-different market. In fact, our study of over 5,000 entrepreneurs and executives shows the opposite: almost anyone who consistently makes the effort to think different can think different.

That's an interesting point to begin with as it give you a blip of hope that eventually your effort in thinking differently will pay off. That lead me to another question which in return i will ask you, are you ready to THINK DIFFERENT.
Now let us look at the second point.

Innovators (of new businesses, products, and processes) spend almost 50% more time trying to think different compared to non-innovators. In other words, non-innovators do occasionally think different (answering "at least a little bit" to questions like "I creatively solve challenging problems by drawing on diverse ideas or knowledge" to hit the 48th percentile in our global database). Yet compared to innovators, they just don't do it as often. Generating new business ideas that make a positive financial impact takes time. Innovators who spend more time thinking different (scoring in the 70-80th percentile) consistently engage in associational thinking by "agreeing"or "strongly agreeing" with questions like the one above and they deliver innovative results more frequently than those who don't. It's that simple.

This a point that i much as it boil to one important thing. The frequency of your effort in being committed to Think Different. It's not an one time thing to do but instead a continous effort to think out from the box.

If thinking different can make such a positive difference, why don't more people spend more time doing it? Researchers at Harvard Medical School opened our eyes to one compelling answer. Sixty to eighty percent of adults find the task of thinking different uncomfortable and some even find it exhausting. When adults must connect the unconnected through associational thinking, it wears them out. Why? Because most adults have lost the skills they once had (just watch almost every four-year old who relishes the chance to think different. And all of us were once four-year olds). We don't lose this skill because genetic coding automatically shuts it down on our twenty-first birthday. Instead, most of us grew up in a world where thinking different was punished instead of praised (at home or school). So while roughly one-third of anyone's innovation capacity comes from their genetic endowment, two-thirds of it is still driven by the environment.

These are the points that should be carefully considered. As a leader do you provide the environment for the culture to thrive. It is clear that most people able to do this as they choose to put in time and effort., more than ever, you’ve got to do something radically different to make a mark.

Do you?



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