I spent about 18 months writing a book about innovation called A Small book about BIG ideas. Then I threw the draft away. Boom. In the bin. I shelved the project.
Why? A number of reasons;
– There are already so many books on innovation out there, how on earth was I going to create new value? How would I differentiate my book from others? How was I going to make it brilliant without stopping everything I do to find time to write a book?
– I also realised that the book was probably more about my own vanity than it was creating something that is useful
– Who was the book for? I wanted to write a book that anyone can read to help them go from problem to idea, from idea to test, from test to implemented idea – an innovation. That person, whoever it is, would they read my book (or any book) to help them do this? Are innovation books written for them or for people like me that live innovation?
– But the best reason however is…well…the book bit. A book creates norms and conventions. It was a start and an end. It doesn’t force the reader to read the pages sequentially, but most of us do because we feel that we have to read it all incase we miss something. For example, I can describe the 12bricks game as a metaphor for how to innovate…but it relies on the reader then getting hold of 12 lego bricks in order to do something, to innovate..I can’t squeeze 12 bricks into book. Likewise, I can’t easily put a A2 size business model canvas in a book.
So if it’s not a book, what is it?
It’s a box. It’s innovation in a box. It’s all anyone needs to innovate. All the tools and information that you need to innovate. And something that you can give to employees. It’s something that can sit on someones desk that tells everyone else “come and talk to me about my idea”, that generates a discussion and a conversation.
Here’s the details. I’d love to know what you think, Click here