A Guide for Innovation
William Duggan's 2007 book, Strategic Intuition, showed how innovation really happens in business and other fields and how that matches what modern neuroscience tells us about how creative ideas form in the human mind. In his new book, Creative Strategy, Duggan offers a step-by-step guide to help individuals and organizations put that same method to work for their own innovations.
Duggan's book solves the most important problem of how innovation actually happens. Other methods of creativity, strategy, and innovation explain how to research and analyze a situation, but they don't guide toward the next step: developing a creative idea for what to do. Or they rely on the magic of "brainstorming"—just tossing out ideas. Instead, Duggan shows how creative strategy follows the natural three-step method of the human brain: breaking down a problem into parts and then searching for past examples to create a new combination to solve the problem. That's how innovation really happens.
Duggan explains how to follow these three steps to innovate in business and any other field as an individual, a team, or a whole company. The crucial middle step—the search for past examples—takes readers beyond their own brain to a "what-works scan" of what others have done within and outside of the company, industry, and country. It is a global search for good ideas to combine as a new innovation. Duggan illustrates creative strategy through real-world cases of innovation that use the same method: from Netflix to Edison, from Google to Henry Ford. He also shows how to integrate creative strategy into other methods you might currently use, such as Porter's Five Forces or Design Thinking. Creative Strategy takes the mystery out of innovation and puts it within your grasp.
"A slim but persuasive guide to innovative thinking." — Publishers Weekly
"With this book, you too can learn how to be a spearhead of innovation." — Steph Lippitt, NY Creative Interns
"Bill Duggan tackles the toughest part of the strategy process, the piece you can't find elsewhere: creating the new innovations that power and revitalize great organizations. For everyone who wants to make an impact, for those who want to lead, for those charged with making organizations work, you won't find this material anywhere else. If you read just one business book this year, make it this one—because this one has a process you can apply immediately in your own organization." — James E. Schrager, University of Chicago Booth School of Business
"There is a crisis in corporate innovation. Every company wants more of it, but few companies are happy with what they're getting. The answer? Stop brainstorming, stop ideating, no more two-day offsites: instead, read and use this book." — Ken Favaro, senior partner, Booz & Company
"Bill Duggan has done it again. In Creative Strategy he has focused on 'what works' in generating innovation, the key to business prosperity and rising national living standards. By blending analysis and creativity—and insights from psychology and neuroscience—Duggan offers a formal method for generating innovation. Creative strategy will join the big ideas that have framed the study of management in the past generation. This well-written and interesting book is a 'must read' for executives and strategy thinkers." — Glenn Hubbard, Dean and Russell L. Carson Professor of Finance and Economics, Columbia Business School
"Books on strategy and innovation tend to be of two types. Either they present theories and models that are hard to put into practice or they offer accounts of success stories that are easy to admire but nearly impossible to replicate. This book is different. It is replete with fascinating examples of things that worked, yet the examples are accompanied by clear, practical explanations of why they worked and, more important, how readers can apply the underlying principles and techniques in their own settings." — Steve Kerr, provost, Chancellor University, and senior advisor and former chief learning officer, Goldman Sachs and General Electric
Part I: Creative Strategy from the Inside
1. From Mind to Method
3. What's the Problem?
4. Where Do We Look?
5. Creative Combination
7. Get Organized
8. Kinds of Innovation
Part II: Creative Strategy from the Outside
10. Top Ten
Part III: References
Creative Strategy at a Glance
Read the introduction and the chapter, "From Mind to Method" (to view in full screen, click on icon in bottom right-hand corner)