From the first sentence in this book, I was in. “Do we really need another book about creativity?” Well, apparently so, because the DeGraff’s invested a whole lot of time, talent, and innovative energy in developing, testing, implementing and writing this treasure of a book. First, let me say my favorite things about this book were the stories of how real people become industrious innovators by mastering a creative mindset. I find this quote fascinating because I realize the profound truth behind it. Heroes of imagination, “…modest, resourceful people who, through small yet brilliant moves, transform the ordinary into the extraordinary. Who wouldn’t want to learn how to do that?
Here – these focus words comprise the techniques authors Jeff DeGraff and Staney DeGraff promote, explain, and use to teach readers to develop a creative mindset and make habits out of a variety of practices. Clarify, Replicate, Elaborate, Associate, Translate, Evaluate
I thought I knew what each of those words meant in the context of creative projects until I read the chapters. There is substance behind every one of those words; for example: ELABORATE Everyone who knows English understands that elaborate means to expand beyond what is original or intentional. Did you know there is a powerful practice called SCAMPER that can dynamically improve on the elaboration of ideas? If you remember 1942 you might also know about this technique introduced by Alex Osborn. I don’t remember 1942 or Alex Osborn, but thanks to this book I now have a tool in my problem-solving kit that I wouldn’t have had otherwise.
SCAMPER teaches you to mobilize ideas and produce a variety of useful possibilities by asking six questions. What can we: Substitute? Combine? Adapt? Modify (or Magnify)? Put to other uses? Eliminate? Reverse (or Rearrange)?
Every chapter of this book has solid takeaways to bring ideas into your organization and to build creativity into your processes to make them innovative than they are today. One other chapter that has definite implications is titled Translate. We understand best, we learn most when we understand the vision and internalize the purpose of a project, an initiative, an enterprise. To do this we have to be able to translate the narrative in relatable, relevant terms. This is the power of story, the foundation of TRANSLATE. Behind every organization, every project, every team is a story.
Successful innovators are masters of the TRANSLATE skill. Their ideas and visions become recognizable stories that inspire, attract, and unify others.
This book is a must-have for anyone who needs to attract, inspire and unify others.