When your imagination is beyond your skill level
Idea to Value
by Nick Skillicorn
2w ago
Recently my toddler has begun playing with Duplo, which is Lego for really young children. And while usually he loves it, it also often causes him to become incredibly frustrated when things do not work as he wants. This is when he might begin shouting and throwing the pieces away. A perfect example is when he has built a tower with a wide top, and wants to attach a long flat piece to the bottom side of the top. This would require some good hand-eye coordination for a adult, but since he has not learned this yet, he tries to push the top piece downwards, causing the whole top to break apart. T ..read more
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When does it make sense to play a character of yourself?
Idea to Value
by Nick Skillicorn
2M ago
When your audience thinks of you and what your work represents, who do they think of? It does not matter if your audience is your team at work, the people who buy your art, or the people who follow your presence online. In almost every case, these people will not be thinking of you exactly as you are in real life, with all of your internal dialogues and challenges which only you can hear. They will not be thinking of you the same way you see yourself. Instead, they will be thinking of you as the character who produces the work they see. This insight became clear to me as I recently listened ..read more
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Focus on doing fewer things in order to make progress faster
Idea to Value
by Nick Skillicorn
2M ago
Often, when trying to make progress towards an innovative challenge there are thousands of things you could be doing. Examined individually, each of these actions look like they could bring you closer to your end goal. Or worse, they may each be different goals which all seem equally appealing and worth putting effort into. However, if they are each taking up your time and effort, the result is often time working ineffectively, working towards targets which are not aligned and where you end the day not sure whether you actually made any meaningful progress at all. As an example, let us imagin ..read more
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Focus on what you can control
Idea to Value
by Nick Skillicorn
4M ago
If you cannot be the best in the world at something, is it even worth trying? Yes. Often, people can be afraid to begin a new creative endeavor, especially when they compare themselves to people who are the best in the world. After all, how can you compete with someone who is so much better than you are? What they fail to recognise is that these “best in the world” people have often been working on their skills, craft and experience for decades to get to where they are now. Of course they will be better than you are now. But that does not mean you cannot improve. The challenge to overcome is t ..read more
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Is Design Thinking dead?
Idea to Value
by Nick Skillicorn
4M ago
A few weeks ago, I saw an article in Fast Company about the layoffs at IDEO, one of the world’s most respected Design Thinking firms. In fact, IDEO was one of the pioneers of Design Thinking back in the late 1970s, but the process of using Design Thinking as part of innovation work really exploded in the 1990s and 2000s. The rise of Design Thinking and IDEO Back then, Design Thinking was seen as a way to incorporate more human insights into the innovation process, which often struggled when R&D teams or product designers would create new products and not know if there was really a problem ..read more
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This new recycled packing material could replace bubble wrap
Idea to Value
by Nick Skillicorn
5M ago
Sometimes, an innovation comes around that is so simple, it makes you think “why didn’t I think of that?” I just came across another such example from renowned innovation powerhouse 3M. They have found a way to use a principle of origami to create sheets of cardboard which fold themselves into packing material when stretched. Check out this video to find out how it works. Based on the Japanese art of Kirigami, which is cutting and folding paper in interesting ways, 3M innovator Tom Corrigan has been looking for ways to turn flat sheets of card into 3-dimensional objects by stretching them. Th ..read more
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Procrastination can (sometimes) make you more creative
Idea to Value
by Nick Skillicorn
6M ago
Are you the sort of person who procrastinates? Who always seems to put off starting work on something and is easily distracted? While this procrastination may be a significant problem for being productive, and the resulting time pressure can be bad for creativity, there may be some instances when it can be beneficial. According to new research from Shin and Grant (2021), a moderate degree of procrastination may actually be beneficial for your creativity. The researchers wanted to see if there was a link between people delaying themselves starting work on a project, and that time being used to ..read more
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You do not need to be completely original in order to be creative
Idea to Value
by Nick Skillicorn
6M ago
Does something need to be completely original in order to be creative? How can you prove if something is original or not? After all, if something which I produce is not original, is it not just a waste of time putting in time and effort creating it? This is a challenge which can petrify many people, and prevent them from trying to produce anything creative. As a result, many potential creative people never even get started. While it is true that in order for something to be creative, it must be at least partially novel, unique or original, what this means is often blown out of proportion. It r ..read more
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Made to last
Idea to Value
by Nick Skillicorn
6M ago
Over the weekend, we stayed with my parents. For my toddler, they brought out some of the toys they had kept from when I was still a baby. One of the hits was a wooden toy train set which must now be over 40 years old. And my child loved it (although there were significantly more “accidents” than I remember being responsible for). Still working after being more than 40 years old That made me think about how some things are built to last, while others are built to be consumed and then thrown away. Or in some cases, designed to break down earlier than they need to so that people are forced to ..read more
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We could all benefit from more failures
Idea to Value
by Nick Skillicorn
7M ago
People are afraid of failure. In fact, people tend to avoid failing publicly wherever possible, especially in the workplace. This can result in people and projects trying to hide failure, or avoid trying things which challenge them at all so that they are less likely to fail. There are deep-rooted evolutionary reasons why we feel losses and negative experiences more strongly than successes, so we try and avoid the losses even if it means not experiencing potential successes as well. Yet for a company to succeed, it needs to grow. And this requires it trying things which may bring large rewards ..read more
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