Blame the Parrot
We have been pondering serious and silly topics this week. Patrick wrote an amazing piece on the timeless qualities of the first bicycle saddles, their recent resurgence, and what we can learn about creating ideas and technologies that last. I got to reflect with 100 college students on the absurd creative genius of children in pursuit of better idea generation practices. Kelly gave an awesome webinar on Innovation Brokers - you can catch up if you missed it below.
I was sitting down to lunch with a friend this week and received some amazing wisdom from him. He knows the Trig team well enough to give me some insightful feedback. He said, "Trig's ability to self-critique and adapt to feedback is the primary driver of your growth. I get a sense of the amazing future potential of Trig because you are constantly seeking feedback and responding. The moment you stop seeking feedback is the moment the rudder locks and the ship starts sailing in a fixed direction with less potential." I had to stop the conversation and write it down so I wouldn't forget his sage words of caution.
I think there is a broader lesson for our Trig community - we are all building amazing things that have potential to change the world. Once we think we have found success, it is easy to forget the disciplines of humility and open communication that got us to where we are today. If we allow ego to get in the way, we rob our future potential to build something greater than ourselves.
Personally, I think the problem is parrots. Find out why in the articles below. I hope you enjoy the exploration with us!
Have you ever heard someone complain, "They don't make products like they used to"? That individual is falling victim to the Survivorship Bias where the eminence of a successful person, occurrence, or thing outshines the improbability of its own success - causing oversight of the vast majority of unsuccessful instances. The vast majority of products that have ever been made have long ago failed and been discarded. Those products that do survive the test of time are subject to the Lindy Effect, and therefore likely to continue to be useful for many years to come, even as the temporary fads ebb and flow. Patrick breaks this down with a fascinating history of bicycle saddles, which you can read here.
Students make great guinea pigs. In a biomedical engineering lecture at Georgia Tech on idea generation this week, we ran our largest group ideation session to date with 100 students participating. After discussing concepts and examples that build the philosophy of creative performance, the students were then given a case study with which to practice good idea generation practices. In theory, you shouldn't be able to hold an ideation session with this large of a group in a lecture hall. These Georgia Tech students proved the theory wrong and delivered an amazing 265 ideas in 10 minutes AND selected a winning idea before the class ended. To find out how they did it and to see the winning idea, check out the article here.
What We're Up To
You might have missed our most recent webinar on Innovation Brokers and the tools of a Cross-Pollinator. Don't worry, we've got you covered! You can find the recording of the webinar here for free. Be sure to listen to the end of the 30 minute webinar. We had awesome questions from participants which included:
Do Cross-Pollinators work better as individuals or in groups?
What is a good way for someone looking at a Smart Board for the first time to know where to start?
How do you know which of the insight clusters should be included in the ideation session?
Until next time,