The arc of human talent:
- talent equals learned or inherited ability to create beautiful things
- making skills gained from [["making"]] equals talent, and talent works on higher level than creativity
In 2003 a total of 5 hexabytes of data existed, today this is created every two days
- computer power is enabling 4 technologies exponentially: IT, nanotechnology, genetics, robotics
Blend of human + machine?
- human is species that inherently seeks to extend its physical and mental reach beyond current limitations
- heaven scenario
- hell scenario
- prevail scenario
Art and science: talent.
The Innovation Mandate: skills and tools for last era inadequate to address challenges of next:
- in between two incompatible paradigms: industrial platform is collapsing, but what is new platform?
"Information Age" is like "Oil Age", rather than Industrial Age. Today Information is creating the Robotic Age:
- human-machine collaboration
Paradigm shift creates 3 people:
1. those who resist change b/c been successful with previous paradigm
2. those who embrace change b/c haven't been successful in previous
3. those who embrace change despite previous success
Principle of Creative Destruction:
- new business models destroy old. Companies must get good at creation and destruction
1. business model, or how enterprise makes money
2. networking, org structure, value claim, partnerships
3. enably processes, or capability company buys from others
4. core processes, or proprietary methods that add value
5. product performance: features and functionality
6. product systems: extended system that supports the product
7. service or how company treats customers
8. channels, or how company connects offering to customers
9. branding, how company builds its reputation
10. customer experience, including touchpoints customers encounter the brand
Everything can be copied, given enough time and motivation. Only originality can't be copied. Leaders + followers: customers reward the former and devalue the latter.
Trickle-down theory on jobs how rich. Also known as supply-side economics, or Reagonomics. Similar to horse-to-sparrow theory: if you feed horse enough oats, some would feed sparrows on the road.
- causing hourglass effect; breaking down middle class
The Robot Curve p.15
- job market pays for original thinking and unique skills
- creative processes become automated, moving from original work, to skilled work, role work, robotic work.
- value price decrease down curve
- employers in Robotic Age don't want employees to be robots
- want people to think for themselves, use imagination, communicate and work in teams, and who can adapt to continuous change
Crisis of Happiness
- single most important event that engage people at work is making progress on meaningful work
- must transform the way we work is the 21st century (Robotic Age).
Obsolete Industrial Brain
- education is a Factory: highest number of graduates, extreme efficiency, and reliable metrics (structural test)
- favours memorisation, math, logic and language
- disfavours interpersonal skills, emotional maturity, resilience
- web creating collective conscious. 4th brain in 3 brain model
- reptile brain, animal brain, human brain
- meta skills: guiding principles rather than specific steps
- determine the how, not the what
- metaskills are reflexive - can learn how to learn
6 drivers of change:
1. extreme longetivity
2. smart machines and systems
3. computational world
4. new media ecology
5. superstructured organisation
6. globally connected world
-metaskills: sense-making, meaning expressed, connect with others
- adaptive thinking, imagine solutions, design mindset
- prototype outcomes, cognitive load management, problem filter
- mastery in "collective knowledge". Creativity of the group
- "wicked problems" today: solution complex and not apparent
- need to "work through problem"
- to be innovative, need to design
- design and design thinking is the core process that must be mastered to build culture of innovation
- traditional business: knowing + doing
- design thinking: knowing + making + doing
- making : imagining and prototyping solutions that weren't on table
- designer: someone who doesn't take yes for an answer: anyone who works to change an existing situation
- design can improve decision-making, corporate strategy, gov't policy
- hands have driven evolution, and making with hands important
-write mind and body
5 talents/metaskills for nonstop innovation:
- feeling: empathy, social intelligence
- seeing: think whole thoughts; systems thinking
- dreaming: applied imagination
- making: nonstop design process
- learning: ability to learn new skills
"I feel, therefore I am"
- orbitofrontal cortex of brain large in humans compared to primates
- this is to connect us to our emotions
- emotions allow us to feel through situations too complex to think through
- feelings are central to learning, intention and empathy + innovation, empathy and creativity
- emotions turn mistakes into learning opportunities
- errors create emotional evens that we remember as knowledge key to innovation
- emotional learning leads to intuition, to arrive at solution without logic
- needs to trust intuition to develop if (dopamine neurons)
- "reflection in action" from doing (and watching)
- watching is mirror neurons, grasp what someone is doing by feeling
- behaviour mirroring put of brain largely responsible for empathy, ability to interpret thoughts and feelings of others
- empathy is valuable commodity: helps understand needs and desires of customers
- pyscopaths can only act rationally, cannot feel or empathise
- cannot solely rely on feeling, even though rely on it to than experience into learning and learning into mastery.
- mind: emergent property arising from interaction your brain and body with your environment. You experience conscious mind as combination of emotion, perception, imagination, memory and cognition
- mind is part of your intellect. Intellect is conscious ability to understand things. To reach conclusions about what is real or true in the world.
Intellect is connected to behaviour. Its a seamless integration of conscious mind, physical body and environment
- biophychological potential to process info
- creativity is a special quality of intellect
- consciousness is subjective experience of being aware and aware
- function is to represent info about what is happening inside and outside bodies so can evaluate and eat on it
- "clearing" house for our sensations, perceptions, feeling and ideas establishing priority among these inputs
- conscious mind cannot process such information as rest of brain
- most is other functions
- key to manage is attention focused attention
- theres nothing that conscious experience actually is, apart from what we think it is
- our mental representation of reality is our consciousness, and our consciousness is merely mental representation
- the objects we perceive are based on real things, but our experience of then is an illusion we create in our minds so we can make sense of them
- Plato's cave
- consciousness is a self-created entertainment for the mind. a magic show that dramatically changes our outlook on life
- evolutionary advantage: difference between truly wanting to exist and merely having some sort of life instinct
- ancestors engaged in enchantment of living-increasing investment willing to make in survival
- enhanced level consciousness evolved during Upper Paleolithic revolution. Paintings on caves etc had function to delight senses. Now long to share our conscious experiences
- personal versions of magic show; with fellow human beings
- and all we do is master various forms of art that approximate our experiences
"Imagine an ocean of islands each with its own internal world of shoved ideas, dreams and desires able to communicate if its neighbors only by smoke signals."
- This is predicament of being human, and why we aspire not only to be scientists but artists.
Art + Science
- art and science split in Western thinking into different categories
- science should explain truth of things, art to express the experience of things: science excludes feelings, art draws them out
- science won divorce
- however, truth is only a construct, a provisional model of reality to allow us to build our world. What we call truth is not objective, but a subjective measure of how useful a given piece of information will be for a given time
- in contrast to Leonardo's thinking, science was the only source of truth. However, movement and emotion (sensation) are the antecedent of meaning
- beauty as a concept of the industrial age
- rather, beauty is a quality of wholeness or harmony that generates meaning, pleasure or satisfaction
- must also surprise! + have memorability
- further; should have rightness, a "fitness for duty" specific structure that allows to align with its purpose
- beauty can be applied to business: clear compelling purpose
- elegance is also important: the rejection of superfluous elements in favour of simplicity and efficiency
- contrast with kitsch: kitsch is inelegance + lack of rightness kitsch like surprise, although won't last
- beauty in design of products long trend rooted in evolution
- the study of sensory and emotive values for the purpose of appreciating and creating beauty.
- aesthetic principles; "formal qualities" are tools to give form to objects of design
- concepts like shape, line, rhythm, contrast, texture
- 3 elements/layers: content, form, and associations
- content: basic thing being experienced (cake)
- form: set of formal qualities to embody its content (choc icing, pink candles, sour cream cake, etc)
- associations: memories, understand, cultural norms etc we bring to our lives
- content + form experienced through lens of association creates meaning
- associations alone is fashions, tribal identifiers like genre music etc that allow fit into groups is fleeting
- good taste comes with understanding the form
"To assume that artistic judgments are simply personal opinion is as mistake as assuming that all scientific opinion is undisputed fact. Meaning and interpretation are at the heart of all create processes."
- people will always desire and choose most beautiful option
- the way a customer "feels" about a product or company is its brand. A brand is akin to a commercial reputation. And while its built by the company; its defined by the feelings of customers
- brand value 2/3 of market cap of Coca-Cola 4 Apple
- "Cold" technology is "warm" touch of service. solution is to use empathy (ability to recognise how other people fel) to design technologies, processes and interactions that increase delight, [[engender]] trust and reinforce tribal identity
- eg. Zappos: technology + humanity
- built brand around customer emotions
- place empathy ahead of operations
- examples of Ryanair V South South West
- Nespresso: - designers "feel" what its like to join Nespresso tribe
- put customer delight first, then engineered pricing model to fit customer expectations
- customers fell cuddled, cared for, and special
- must not neglect people's feelings when present an innovation
- empathy spirals outward as it grows: ability to connect
- deeply with people through vicarious imagination
- feeling: metaskill ability to draw on human emotion for intuition, aesthetics and empathy
- social skills is fundamental: EI skills such as team building, leadership conflict resolution, selling, communication and negotiation
- people still want to laugh, feel pleasure, love and be loved, express our thoughts, share feelings, see and be seen and contribute] to history
- It's not business - its personal
- technology needs to come from empathy, not fear, greed or laziness
- personal interactions must be made more personal
- more likely to see what we believe than believe what we see: confirmation bias
- this is tendency to prefer evidence that fits what we believe, blocking out "inconvenient truths".
- perceptual bias
- twice as likely to seek information that confirms our beliefs than consider evidence that contradicts
- when we have a belief, religion, cause or brand, our decision-making is easier because emotional brain because prefers decisions that feel right
- be careful how you train your inner beliefs
- confirmation bias is built into culture. Culture is seamless web of beliefs that work together so they seem natural, universal
- most prominent nongentetic influence on human perception
- culture produces stories that bind people together to function as team, group, family, company or nation
- culture defined by ideas taken for granted, not ideas argued about
- when argue from strong belief, put feelings first and reasons second
- to replace beliefs with knowledge requires emotion and reason: it requires "seeing" or systems thinking
- systems thinking is ability to contemplate whole, not just the parts
- most people draw what they know, not what they see
- problems with either/or propositions. eg. political questions
- Roman, Mayan and Khmer empires all fell after predisposition to either/or faced gridlock and finally collapse
- two extremes cannot solve complex problems
- either/or tend to be false dichotomies: logical fallacies which suggest two alternatives, but more possible
- reject either/or, and embrace and look for narrative based on common ground rather than compromise
- "integrative thinking" key. don't break problem into separate pieces and work on them one by one. Instead, see the entire architecture of the problem - how the various parts fit together, and how one decision affects another.
- resolve the tensions (oppositions) that launched problem can craft holistic solution. Reject certainty and grapple with paradox
Thinking Whole Thoughts
- seeing/drawing problem the same
- by making connections we're searching for patterns that show us how objects and events linked
- see the world as interconnected system of systems
- metaskill of visualisation: seeing how to see
- world isn't lineara: full of arcs, loops and spirals
- step back for full view: systems thinking, adaptive thinking, cybernetics, and holistic thinking
- a system is a set of interconnected elements organised to achieve a purpose
- system has three types of components: elements, interconnections and a purpose. it has a set of rules - internal logic that allows systems to achieve its purpose
- the system along with rules determines behaviour
- feedback in most systems subject latency (delay between cause and effect)
- i.e. Quarterly reports
- lagging indicators, not leading indicators
- any change that reinforces original change is called reinforcing or positive feedback
- any change that dampens original change is called balancing or negative feedback
- latency: causes problems, between emotional brain hardwired to overvalue short term and undervalue long term
Archetypes In Systems
- Information Delay: late-arriving feedback. Long-term goal, but decisions made according to info that returns from last decision. eg. five times ahead of downtown, five ahead of upturn
- Addiction: when the cure is worse that the disease
- short-term fix for long-term problem. eg. coffee uptake during day, sleepless nights
- Eroding goals: "lowering the goals"
- Escalation: "an eye for an eye, plus interest." e.g. executed 2 soldiers, other side 10 and so on
- Tragedy of commons: "don't be selfish. take turns"
- Rule Beating: obeying letter of law but not the spirit
- Limits of growth: "what goes up must come down"
- Success to the successful: "the rich get richer and the poor get poorer"
- The wrong goal: "be careful what you wish for"
- separate effort from outcome. Any system directed toward effort is likely to produce effort. Any system directed toward outcome is likely to produce an outcome
Primacy of Purpose
- purpose exerts most influence over a system: overriding goal, reason it exists
- in complex adoptive system, purpose sets directions, suggests rules for behavior, produces feedback about performance and addresses problems
- company purpose?: the reason it exists beyond making money
- company's purpose, norms and shared meaning are the "self" that it organises around
- what of purpose drives how of behaviour
- important to determine personal purpose
- 10 commandments not sufficient in modern world
- in complex systems aren't always obvious, difficulty is they seem obvious
- measurement becomes the game
- complex systems don't behave in linear ways
- what will happen if I do nothing?
- what might be improved?
- what might be diminished?
- what will be replaced?
- will it expand future options?
- what are the ethical considerations?
- will it simplify or complicate the system?
- are my basic assumptions correct?
- what has to be true to make this possible?
- are events likely to unfold this way?
- if so, will the system really react this way?
- what are the factors behind the events?
- what are the long-term costs and benefits?
Framing a Problem
- art of designing solutions starts with the frame
- where you draw boundaries at investigation will determine what your conclusions will be and what kind of process you'll use to get there
1. View the problem from multiple angles
- own viewpoint, other peoples viewpoint, high-order system ("above")
2. Develop a problem statement
3. List the knowns and the unknowns
- although be careful not to replace unknowns with assumptions
4. Change the frame
5. Make a simple model
- the simpler you can make a model, the easier to understand the problem
- the art of framing problems eventually leads to finding problems
- which problems are worth solving, which if solved would produce significant effect
- how to find problems both worthy and inspiring?
- what's the eitheror (false dichotomy) that obscuring opportunities for innovation?
- where are the usual methods no long achieving the predicted results?
- what's the can't-do that you could turn into a can-do?
- which problems are so big that they can no longer be seen?
- which categories or sectors exhibit the most uneven rates of change?
- in which area is there a great deal of interest but very few solutions?
- where can you find too little order or too much order?
- which of your talents could be scaled up in a surprising way?
- to what new areas could your passion take you?
Feeling and Seeing complimentary:
- too much feeling create self-indulgent solutions that don't map real world
- too much seeing likely miss out on flashes of insight that fuels innovation
Imagination: how conjure up images, feelings or concepts, we can't perceive through senses?
- imagination closely linked to dream state
- improvised jazz vs memorised music
- REM sleep similar patterns
- dreaming: unfocused attention, unplanned or irrational associations, apparent loss of control: disassociating thoughts from the logical
- we actively create dreams while unconscious, like we create perceptions while awake
- emotions engaged in dreams, whole reasoning disconnected
- innovation: little controlled madness
- Applied imagination: ability to harness dreaming to a purpose
- divergent thinking: make connections after letting go of what already know
- Innovate: move from known to unknown. Hold beliefs lightly so what you believe doesn't block your view of what you might find out
- Originality comes from the exposure of factual knowledge to the animating force of imagination
Idea can fall into 4 categories:
1. adapted from same domain
2. adapted from different domain
3. new to the innovation
4. new to the world
- Imagination grows stronger with use
- Answer-shaped Hole: number one trap getting into realm of knowledge
Three steps in generating answer:
1. discover "what is" - the body of known facts about a problem
2. imagine "what could be" - imagination: get beyond the obvious
3. describe the attributes of success
- missing answer formed at the intersection of affordances and desiderata
- affordances: creative possibilities native to the subject
- desiderata: secondary objectives that support a goal or a solution
- the frame of the problem is the dragon pit
- crucial to stay longer in dragon pit, and embrace paradox
- paradox: proposition that contains the contradictory thoughts while expressing a truth
- by holding two opposing thoughts in his mind at the same time able to move imagination higher
- must tolerate ambiguity: to get most out of imagination
- must keep problem in a liquid state as long as possible
- induction: logic of educated guesses
- deduction: logic of argument
- neither is suitable in creating hypothesis, only judging hypothesis
- need abduction: nonlogic of what could be
"capturing the dream"
Wonderment key to creative thinking (not logic):
- "I wonder", "I wish", "what if"
Steve Jobs was a prime contrarian:
- sky is blue; no its wide
- strong disbelief system
- Picasso, Einstein
- to innovate, must reject conformity if you're looking for brilliance
Use contrarian thinking:
- recognise judgments: who says? so what?
- dare to be wrong
- stay in the dragon pit: entertain competing ideas
- be disobedient: don't align with existing rules
- don't wait for research
- cannibalise yourself
- stand up for quality
The Play Instinct
- imagination is the child of obstinance and playfulness
- refusal to settle for comfortable answer while having fun doing it
Two ways to measure time:
- in ancient Greece: objective time -> chronos
- subjective time -> kairos
- objective time: the sun, moon, seasons etc
- subjective time: your own experience. ie. quality time
- creativity and business working on two types of time
- key is to focus on goals, for both not deadlines
- combinatory play: combining two ideas together
- fluency of ideas comes from prolific thinking
Learnable techniques for fluency:
1. think in metaphors
- make comparison between two unrelated things
2. think in pictures of spatial relationships
- Einstein was creative, right-brain thinker
3. start from a different place
4. poach from other domains
5. arrange blind dates: force connections of unrelated ideas
6. reverse the polarity: reverse assumptions and see how they can happen
7. find the paradox
8. give it the third degree: what else is like this, from which you could get the idea
9. be alert for accidents: what did you discover that you didn't set out to discover?
10. write things down: notebooks
In Robotic Age, creative collaboration needs to link people together top to bottom, beginning to end, across disciplinary and regional boundaries.
Softball brainstorming is to set aside judgments/criticism, to allow freedom to state ideas.
Hardball brainstorming allows critical judgment:
- focus on what is best
- fight against convergent thinking
- search for T-shaped people
- strong descender: deep experience in discipline
- developed crossbar: ability to work with people across disciplinary
- must add X-shaped people
- main (although not sole) goal is to bring group together and facilitate progress towards a goal
- facilitator should have respect/credibility
- swarming: (military term to attack a problem from number of angles at once)
- don't approach linear way
Bolt Upright Moment
- "dark time" the incubation period
- bolt upright moment: when new idea clicks into the right criteria
- criteria are pick-up sticks that happen to fall in particular pattern
- must learn to understand/develop sensitivity for signals
- Six tests for originality. Dreaming produces original idea, but is it new to you, new to group, or new to the world?
1. Is idea disorienting? Should be unsettling
2. Does it kill ten birds in one stone? the pattern of pick up sticks overlap, telling you solution is elegant. (not compromise, but common ground)
3. Does it need to be proved? if doesn't need to be proved, probably not original or bold
4. Is idea likely to force change? Great ideas are not polite
5. Does it create affordances? Affordances are opportunities inherent in a new idea
6. Can it be summarised?
- creativity: imagination + craft (making)
making: envisions, embodies, elaborates, develops, shapes, solves, advances, iterates, proves
- "reflection in action": thinking while doing
- talk back from situation
- creative process of surrender, not control
- letting go
No Process Process
- state of not knowing, to state of knowing
- correct in theory, but not in practice. not helpful
- instead, should use no-process. start with general understanding and go from there
- innovation stages: 1. getting the right idea (dreaming)
Getting the idea right (making)
- to improve, you must constantly push yourself beyond your limits, then pay attention to what trips you up
- fast failing: successive drawings, models, prototypes designed to illuminate problem, and hone intuition
-> making, to be meaningful, is a journey to your best self
- uncluding is art of subtrating every element that doesn't pull its weight : removing all but the necessary so the necessary may speak
- reject clutter: visual, verbal, product, feature, conceptual
Principles to Unclude:
1. Think big, spend small
2. Kill ten birds with one stone
3. Be clear
4. Look for the obvious
5. Keep subtracting
Art of Simplexity
- complexity and simplicity are same side, against messiness
- simplexity stands in opposition to disorder, eutrophy, messiness with no meaning
- exformation a term to describe how meaning is created
- real value of a message/product doesn't come from final content, but from content thats been discarded along way + the exformation
- eg. concise language
How do you know when you're finished?
1. Is it surprising?
2. Does it have fitness for duty?
3. Are the underlying assumptions true?
4. Does it have clear focus?
5. Are the elements in harmony?
6. Will the right people love it?
7. Is it courageous?
8. Is it valuable beyond the near and now?
9. Does it have depth?
10. Is it as simple as it should be?
Sell in, not out
Don't compromise solution selling into an organisation: take your audience on the journey you went on:
1. Understand the 4 stages of acceptance: worthless nonsense; interesting, but perverse; true but unimportant; I always said so
2. Take 4 stages and condense in time span, best using a story.
3. Information is not enough, need to imagine life after the change: vision for the future - lead audience using story from what is to what could be, people can visualise their role
4. Shepherd concept through "valley of death": bog between original vision and its commercial deployment
- use metrics to concrete points
Impossible to Nothing
- need to take responsibility for what and how we learn
- use traditional courses to introduce you to whats broadly known
- use other vehicles to explore whats not broadly known, special to your own deep interests, and therefore more valuable
- apprenticeship, workshops, special projects, online tutorials, or self-prescribed readine regimes
- shift focus to gaining understanding. Begin learning how to learn
- self-directed learning or autodidacticism lets you build a new skill on the platform of the last one
- must learn, unlearn and relearn
- learning by playing
- learning is just finding out more about what you're interested in
"follow your bliss"
- creative play - happiness and creativity mutually supportive
- joy zone; learning accelerates
- embrace "what you're interested in"
- mastery is simple formula: practice x passion = skill
- joy zome exists between anxiety (too hard) and boredom (too easy)
What's the mission
- learning is the natural process of pursuing one's personal goals
- purpose must be coupled with strategy -> plan to won a niche that matters
- purpose drives personal success: mission is a plan to fulfill a purpose
- Purpose: find the overlap between what the world needs and what you have to give.
- choose direction that lets you work with your whole heart
- excellent; meets technical standards of relevant profession
- engaging; most remain inviting and meaningful
- ethical; constantly interrogate about what it means to be responsible
Learning: talent of learning a form of metacognition, or knowing about knowing:
- self-awareness that comes from observing what you think while you're thinking it
- tells you when and how to use a particular strategy to solve a problem or address a challenge
- learn skills in a sequence
- cognitive phase: intellectualise task and invent tactics
- associative phase: worry less about errors then apply skill to a specific task
- autonomous phase: become just as good as need to be
Perring, consultant to Toyota: understoond the most important things in life couldn't be measured
- profound knowledge cannot be taught, only learned through experience
- experience though must be interpreted against a theory to understand learning in the context of a system
- theory is framework for experience to help you understand "what does this mean?"
- to become autodidact must develop your own personal theory of learning - a personal framework for acquiring new knowledge
Learn by doing: first-hand experience offers richest fuel for creativity
Find worthy work: make sure first step offers new and valuable lessons on the path to your purpose
Harness habits: habits are formed from routines. Habits allow you to perform familiar tasks with little thought, freeing up mental resources to concentrate on new challenges
Focus on your goals: 5/8 conditions for creative flow (develop capacity for creative flow)
1. define clear goals;
2. concentrate on the task at hand;
3. become deeply involved
4. so your sense of time is altered
5. and concern for the self disappears
Learn Strategically: read specifically on your subject, and take notes
Cultivate your Memory: keep working on memory
Increase your sensitivity: make subtle distinctions between outcomes; takes place in associative phase of learning, after you've mastered the basics.
Stretch your boundaries: constantly aim beyond your capabilities
Customise your metaskills:
Feed your desire: find drive to continue irrespective of setback "The Big Want"
Scare Yourself: courage is ability to move ahead despite fear. Different to fearlessness
Practice: deliberate practice makes all the difference
Creativity Loves Company: genius within community more powerful than one without
- connection between the parts that determine collective power of the whole
- bridging: process of making friends with the spirited people
- people with different views and skills but similar ethics and goals
- bonding: making friends with like-minded people - people of same affiliation
- briding more effective: both social and career bridging
- enable yourself to meet like-spirited people more than just like-minded
Unplugging: to be creative, must have ability to pay attention
- unplug from mobile life
"Without great solitude, no serious work is possible" - Picasso