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 I have come across with a few occasions lately to realize the importance of specifics and of putting something on paper. (Probably I can combine the two and say that it is critical for us to put something specific on paper, though it may be going too far on efficiency!) 

 Let me discuss one by one. I have always tried to identify specific examples to give life to concept and/or framework.  Thus, I often ask for the specific examples of successful companies/countries/cities, whether the topic is innovation, competent people or diversity.  For example, which company and/or country do you pick as innovative company? Which company and/or country do you pick as the place where you find many competent people, or high on diversity?  Sometimes I ask for two extremes—very successful one or very unsuccessful one.

  Rather than discussing the definition and measurement, it often helps to think of specific examples first and try to identify common characteristics.  For business executives, this approach tends to work better. It is also effective in engaging the audience from the beginning.

  What I like about specific examples is that we often have diverse views.  Some people may say that X company is innovative, while others may disagree.  From the differences in views, we can explore what constitutes innovation, for example.

  The other lesson is the importance of putting something on paper. I like brainstorming sessions to get the ideas out, but brainstorming can go so far.  We need to put something on paper to make it happen.  

Many people (even so called “creative” people) discuss importance of documenting and translating concept and ideas into words.  I agree. I also like to draw chart and graph to illustrate various elements of the concept etc. to show the relationships and the total picture. 

 It usually takes quite a bit of thinking to put into words and draw chart and graph.  You need many trials and errors before you come to the one that shows the concept you develop clearly.

  Advantage of putting on paper includes 1) crystallize our own thinking and 2) get others reactions to the concept and 3) make sure that we have common understanding of the concept.  It is definitely a struggle (at least for me) to put my ideas and concept on paper, and in particular, draw a chart which illustrates the concept clearly, but it definitely is worth the effort.

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  1. Hi
    I’m going to spend more time thinking about this post

    • yishikura
    • September 8th, 2011

    Dear Mick, this is Yoko Ishikura. Thanks for your comment. let me know your thought.

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