Posted by: Jamen Koos
business, competitive situation, disruptive, innovation, process
Often-times, indeed, my way isn’t the best way.
I used to put one 32oz bottle of electrolyte-enhanced water in the refrigerator at a time. I would pour small glasses of the stuff until the bottle ran out every few days. When the bottle of electrolyte-enhanced water from the fridge ran out, sometimes I would pull another bottle from the cabinet and poor a warm glass of water. Then I would put ice in the warm water. I did it this way for years. Then, this brilliant person I know offered: “Why don’t you just put all the waters in the refrigerator, since you have room, that way they’re already cold when you want them—this way you never hassle with the ice.”
A superior way to do things—and a change I truthfully doubt I would have ever thought of. I did the things the way I did them, and it worked—maybe my way wasn’t perfect, but it worked. Along came a suggestion to do things differently and behold, it struck me as profound. This change may seem small—and yes the affect this particular process-improvement had on my life is relatively low—but the principle is not.
What does this have to do with disruptive innovation in the business world?
I learned concretely that day the value of asking for another’s opinion—so I do it often now—and it serves me well.
If you find yourself unable to think outside the box to solve a business or competitive situation you are in, try asking someone who thinks differently than you. Seek outside your own mind. What is obvious to others may be, in fact, profound to you.