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For some young people this is very natural, while for others it does not come so easily to be a team player.
The problem is, how can you be creative without failing, looking stupid or repeating what others have already suggested a hundred times?
For last few years I have been talking to various startups and have heard many interesting recipes for innovation.
Therefore, the next rule of creative thinking is very simple: allocate time – it might be an hour per day or per week – in which to exercise creative thinking about something specific.
A colleague told me that when he was a student many years ago he started musing about mobile phones – what they would be in 10 and 20 years’ time.
It sounds so simple, and yet in this era of information overload and highly charged urban life, this important element is often missing from our everyday lives.
All too often we stay focused on the main task at hand, devoting our mental powers to routine actions (including Twitter and SMS – well, I am sometimes guilty of this too), so that at the end of the day the most creative idea we can come up with is just to finally take a break in front of the TV or computer screen. Whatever you’re doing – whether it’s work or leisure – practice spending time applying the “three ifs” formula to anything you see or imagine.However, after several rounds of discussions and brainstorming they began to come up with many new creative ideas.We narrowed down those innovations into small course projects and my students’ teams won several cash awards to implement their creative ideas.He just took an existing cell phone and asked a very simple question: how can we improve it to make it better – or the best?Let’s be clear about this – there are no universal recipes for innovation, and each person should develop her or his own approach depending on specialty, interest, type of thinking, or even the type of team s/he is participating in.He didn’t invent those products, but he made them better and he was great at explaining why his version was superior to other competing goods.On many occasions I hear from my students, “But I had that idea first” or “I proposed something like that just recently and nobody listened to me.” In this situation I always highlight the bottom line – probably you did have a wonderful idea, but you didn’t express yourself clearly and excitingly enough to grab people’s attention, or help others to grasp the nature of your innovation or project.What do the major innovative ideas of our time have in common, from Microsoft (well, when it was young) to Google?All of them were created by teams of people who stayed together to conceive the idea, plan their innovative projects, take them to investors and the public, and most importantly jointly brainstorm those innovations within the team – bouncing ideas, questions and improvements until the product was perfected to become the next multi-billion dollar “eureka.”Therefore, a final important asset to add to your innovation skillset, is the ability to be a valuable team player, capable of bouncing ideas to the next level.Already at college his essays on this topic won much praise, and after college he got a cool job designing apps for phones to make them much smarter and attractive for “millennials”.There is simple truth in the fact that Steve Jobs of Apple was great at exploring and explaining innovations based on existing products – laptops, cell phones, music players.