Beyond TRIZ - Systematic Innovation
Editor | On 01, Oct 2007
The TRIZ Journal became a part of the Real Innovation network in 2006. TRIZ is featured on RealInnovation.com, but so are a variety of other systematic innovation methods and tools. The following is a taste of what you may be missing by not reading each Monday’s featured article on Real Innovation.
The FarSight Group has cataloged to date some 280 different methods for creative thinking. However, many overlap or address the same class of problems â€“ it is important to examine all issues that arise in innovation thinking: problem definition, requirements support, idea generation or expansion and contradiction resolution.
The Innovative Method Selector allows the user to respond to particular questions associated with a decision matrix. User responses will guide them through the matrix to the most appropriate aforementioned innovation method for their particular problem. The IMS may be used several times with a single situation as the desired output changes. (Click here to read more.)
During the last twenty years there has been a significant shift in the practice of R&D as companies have gradually shifted from a closed model of R&D work to a more open approach.
Why, aside from specific financial rewards, would anyone spend their time helping your company? Customers want to be part of the business and they want to be insiders with the companies and brands they trust. Savvy businesses are finding meaningful ways for customers to become involved. (Click here to read more.)
Six Sigma operates based on the assumption that the solution to a problem is contained within the process under investigation. Six Sigma is very powerful when this assumption is true as it enables the practitioners to identify the transfer function (y = f (x)) and control the output. In many cases the solution to the problem is not to be found in the process and this inhibits the ability to identify the control variables. In this case, a methodology that can solve the problem outside of the process boundaries, such as the TRIZ, is necessary. The successful integration of TRIZ with Six Sigma can overcome any limitations originating from lack of solution location in the process space. (Click here to read more.)
How often do you hear leaders using sport as an analogy for their business? Sport has great attributes in terms of endeavor, teamwork and training, but it is a poor metaphor for business in one important respect â€“ innovation. In sport there are strict rules that cannot be broken without penalty, whereas in business most of the rules can be broken. Radical innovation means contradicting convention and inventing an entirely new game. You can gain a remarkable advantage if you can find a way to rewrite the rules of the game so that it suits you rather than your competitors. (Click here to read more.)
Brainstorming is one of the most important and widely used means to innovate. However, brainstorming sessions are often not as productive as expected due to ego clashes, arguments and lack of focus. A leader in creative thinking, Edward De Bono, developed the six thinking hats technique that overcomes most of the pitfalls of regular brainstorming. The technique proposes and explains six directions (or hats) of thought. Wearing only one hat at any given point in time helps an individual (or a team) focus on various aspects of the topic of discussion in a non-confrontational manner, thereby creating considerable synergy and enabling the brainstorming to be much more fruitful and productive. Furthermore, the use of lateral thinking triggers and catalyzes creative thinking and expands the scope of both the problem, as well as the solutions generated. (Click here to read more.)
In order to establish a set of working measures of innovation, one must identify common characteristics of the innovation process, their inter-relationships and well-defined deliverables. In order for an innovation process to be standardized, its inputs, in-process activities and outputs must be identified. An innovation process includes many process steps and dozens of possible metrics. The challenge is that people want to devise magical measures that can tell the whole story and serve as predictors of innovation. Immediately establishing an adequate and accurate measurement system is unlikely to succeed; starting with an initial set of measures is a better approach. (Click here to read more.)