We talk about the need to innovate a lot, but what do we do to foster it?
Well-known creativity researcher Edward deBono says that one thing we can do is to train ourselves not to take the first option that comes up. DeBono’s research found that groups that generate more options before deciding tend to make better, more innovative decisions.
This can be done with one simple question. For example, “That sounds like a great idea, and, before we go on, what other options are there?”
When really innovative decisions are needed, taking the time and mental effort to go through creating several options can be very valuable. Often the first option is the “knee jerk” reaction that is based on the usual thinking. Later options will often be more creative.
For more ideas on how to be innovative and make better decisions in teams, DeBono’s Mindtools website has a lot of freebies.