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9/1/1998 | 1 MINUTE READ

It's That Time...Again

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It must be the time of year.


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It must be the time of year. Same time last year I was in the same predicament...I have not found any finishing topic that inspires me. However, I did read an article that can help just about anyone, no matter what industry they are in.

"The Art of Genius," by Michael Michalko, appeared in the May issue of The Futurist magazine. He tries to answer the questions: How do geniuses come up with ideas? (I wish I knew!) What can we learn from the thinking styles of geniuses? Is there a link between their thinking styles? Scholars have studied these questions and determined that the link is creativity/imagination. Einstein already knew that. He is quoted as saying, "Imagination is more important than knowledge."

The mark of a genius is the willingness to look at all the alternatives for solving a problem. If asked what is half of 14, you may respond 7. Couldn't it also be 1 and 4, or four teen? A genius' ability to connect and disconnect enables him to see things others miss.

The article suggests that the most important lesson one can learn from geniuses such as Einstein, Edison, Mozart and others is that if you find something interesting, go with it. "Many talented people fail to make significant leaps of imagination because they have become fixated on their preconceived plan. But not the truly great minds. They do not wait for gifts of chance; they make them happen."

If you think the way you always have, you will get what you have always received.

If I were a boss, manager, supervisor or top dog in a company, I would encourage this kind of thinking. For each problem, obstacle or "situation," the manager should ask that each employee come up with about three possible solutions. Of course, this will not work with decisions that need to be made on the spot. However, if employees begin to think this way, they may even quickly determine different and/or better ways to solve immediate dilemmas. Encourage creative solutions, even bizarre and unusual ideas. Edison insisted that one success only came after thousands of failures. "Blessed are the cracked; for they shall let in the light."

Now, perhaps, I should put this thinking to work for a solution to the next editorial.