Patterns 'R Us
Making Sense Out of Nonsense
by Mitchell Ditkoff
C_n y__ r_ad th__ se_t_nc_ ?
And do you know why you can? Because you've been given just enough information to deduce a meaning. Your brain, drawing on past experiences of letters, words and sentences, recognizes a pattern - or at least thinks it does.
Human beings are masters at "filling in the blanks." We see something, compare it to our storehouse of past memories, reach a conclusion and then act on it. This pattern- recognizing ability of our brain is very useful tool. It saves us time, lets us to make decisions on the fly and helps us interpret our world. For example, when driving up a hill, your pattern recognition ability allows you to keep on driving rather than stop your car to make sure the road continues on the other side. Past experience has taught you that roads continue, even when you can't see where they're going.
Patterns are neither good nor bad. They're simply the raw material from which we interpret our world. Weathermen make their living interpreting patterns. So do stock market analysts, futurists, and astrologers. All of them infer a future based on past trends. Sometimes, however, they misinterpret the clues. Or even more insidiously, cannot detect new patterns inconsistent with their present worldview.
If you want to be more creative, start making a commitment to look for, learn from, and challenge existing patterns. It will help you see the world (and all your problems) in wonderful, new ways - the fertile ground from which all innovation springs.
WHAT PATTERNS OR TRENDS INTRIGUE YOU?
WHAT CAN YOU LEARN FROM THESE PATTERNS?
WHAT IDEAS FOR A NEW PRODUCT OR SERVICE CAN YOU CONCEIVE BY NOTICING AN EMERGING PATTERN?
Top News & Offerings
Storytelling at Work
Storytelling at Work is Mitch Ditkoff's newly published book about the power of personal storytelling in business – why it matters and what you and your organization can do to leverage the impact of storytelling in the workplace.
Workshops & Trainings
Highly engaging learning experiences that increase each participant's ability to become a creative force for positive change
High impact certification training that teaches committed change agents how to lead groundbreaking ideation sessions
Your "best and brightest" are the future leaders of your company, but unless they know how to foster a culture of innovation, their impact will be limited. A one-day workshop with us is all they need to begin this journey.
Our Blog Cabin
Our Heart of Innovation blog is a daily destination for movers and shakers everywhere — gleefully produced by our President, Mitch Ditkoff, voted "best innovation blogger in the world" two years running.
What's the Problem
Einstein once said that if he had 60 minutes to solve a problem, he'd spend the first 55 thinking about the problem, and the next 5 solving it. This is the workshop he would have invented if time wasn't so relative.
Innovation is a team sport. Brilliant ideas go nowhere unless your people are aligned, collaborative, and team-oriented. That doesn't happen automatically, however. It takes intention, clarity, selflessness, and a new way of operating.
Webinars Powered by
Idea Champions University
If you enjoy our blog, you will love our newly launched webinars! Our training is now accessible online to the whole world.
If you're looking for a powerful way to jump start innovation and get your creative juices flowing, Awake at the Wheel is for you. Written by Mitch Ditkoff, Co-Founder and President of Idea Champions.
Guy Kawasaki's Alltop "online magazine rack" has recognized Idea Champions' blog as one of the leading innovation blogs on the web. Check out The Heart of Innovation, and subscribe!
The world's first interactive business blues band. A great way to help your workforce go beyond complaint.
"In tune with corporate America." — CNN