Thursday, January 13, 2011

Think Inside, Outside or Create a New Box?

In many frustrating situations to help solve problems, a lot of people would utter the words “Think Outside the Box”. It’s a cliché and if you type it in Google you will find no less than 16,000,000 hits. It’s a statement that promotes creativity, innovation and getting out of the norm.

It has come fairly more popular with the arousing problem that states: How to connect four dots with three lines to make one enclosed shape?

The sad part though is that it is used so frequently that even those who do not think creatively at all say it making the receiver feel disappointment in himself. As a result, it had a total different outcome than the expected creative new solution.


“Think Outside the Box” approach could be used to innovate on something that has already been done or to further bring usefulness by creating new solutions to problems. More importantly, to improve on something you already know. Thus, before thinking outside the box we need to know what is inside it.


Hereby, I try to promote the "Think Inside the Box" approach first for a simple reason: You can't innovate before learning what has already been created. For example, in order to craft a new dance, you need to learn the basic dance moves; before you can write a novel, you need to know how to write first; before you paint a portrait, you need to know how to use the brush and colors; before entering the market with a new product, you need to learn about the competition and the products already in the market; and so on. It is the ideas, hard work, tools, research and education you acquire before coming up with the masterpiece. 


Now after knowing what is inside the box, the next step is to use “Think Outside the Box” approach. Otherwise it will just result in avoidable despair.


Which brings me to the last step, what about “Creating a New Box” rather than just speculating around the old box? Not improving what someone else has come up with, but creating something of no prior existence.


How do you feel when someone asks you to "Think Outside the Box"? What are your thoughts in this? 

By:Sherwette Mansour

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2 comments:

Hagar said...

Very tricky ,thumps up

I became a great fan of yours ,wow 3aleeky :D

Sherwette Mansour said...

Thanks :) I am happy u enjoyed it :)

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