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Process and Structure Kills Creativity

| On 01, Jan 2010

Message: 24
Posted by: James
Posted on: Wednesday, 22nd November 2006


I've been reading with interest the articles on this website. Coming from a quality background, I am predisposed to process and structure to accomplish work. But I have to admit that I'm not convinced that innovation and creativity go hand in hand with process and structure.

I realize that highly innovative companies like Google have a process to determine what they will invest their billion$ in but from what I hear that turn their engineers and software developers loose a good number of hours a week in order to see what they can come up with. They have no process or structure for the inception of innovation.

What do others think about this?


Message: 25
Posted by: Vito
Posted on: Wednesday, 22nd November 2006

What do you mean, when you say “from what I hear,” is it speculation or is it a fact? Also, what do you mean by turning them loose? Be more specific, please. Thanks! 

Message: 27
Posted by: Michael S Slocum
Posted on: Friday, 24th November 2006


The fields of Productivity and Quality have evolved to the point where systematization and method are present in their current states. It is logical that this systemic evolution reach the field of Innovation as well (and it has).

Empirical observations of the resolution of historical problems (from the international patent database) forms the foundation for the Theory of Inventive Problem Solving (TRIZ). TRIZ is a collection of algorithms and heuristics that provide method to innovation and allow ideation to be practiced in a manner that is repeatable, predictable, and reliable. TRIZ is the scientific core of the systematic innovation effort.

The systematic application of innovation methodologies (TRIZ, TILMAG, Heuristic Problem Redefinition Process, etc) has amplified the capability of hundreds of organizations worldwide: Siemens, Avon, BMW, Boeing, Bordon, Case, Caterpillar, Clorox, Cummins, Daimler-Chrysler, Dial, DuPont, Eli Lilly, J&J, Kodak, P&G, Pfizer, NASA, Rolls Royce, Samsung, Toyota, Xerox (just to name a few). These organizations have benefited from systematic inovation in several key ways: faster ideation cycle-times, higher quality ideas and problem resolutions, more patents per capita, billions of dollars in cost avoidance from solved problems, and billions of dollars in new revenue generation from new product development.

Coupled with world-class Productivity and Quality methods (Automation, Lean, Six Sigma), Systematic Innovation will enable the modern corporation to be Ambidextrous (able to preserve the current business model while it develops the next).

Message: 34
Posted by: Paul
Posted on: Tuesday, 28th November 2006


I can only add the following:

– “direction in innovation” can come from: engineering, purchase and sales department (but probably will be copy paste … if you understand me)

– true innovation can only come from engineering (with or without help of innovative suppliers) with a real budget (for research and tests in production, which costs mostly a lot) and some “freedom”…