Ago 292012

Innovation by helping others to innovate

Nobody can argue that an innovative idea can be successful if this idea is used by others, this is the customer traction called by Bill Buxton on his “Long Nose of Innovation”.  Recently it got my attention a tweet  from Amy Wilkinson, Harvard Senior Fellow and author on entrepreneurial leadership, that quoted Brian Tracy “Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others” Well this quote fits the innovator dilemma on being successful, holding this idea on mind let me elaborate:

When an idea comes and becomes a tangible object, technology or service it has to be useful to somebody else to complete the cycle of an innovative idea, innovation stands for something new that has a value to others, well we need to help others to use our ideas then the Long Nose of Innovation (Bill Buxton) is completed and then is when an idea becomes an innovation.

In the automotive electronics industry we need to look for assembly solutions for our microelectronics products, we start with assembly concepts that become assembly stations, those concepts becomes an build of process for our specific application, then we try to make sure our build of process becomes an standard across our product lines, this concept make us competitive, because we are disseminating concepts full fill our five start challenge:

1)      Stable. Application is a proved solution and is a repeatable process.

2)      Flexible. Application can be easily modified to embrace similar products.

3)      Error Proof. Station ensure the process is completed before leaves the station using simple error proof strategies.

4)      Cycle time effective. Application has short cycle time, or its low cost allows meet cycle time with multiple cells. 

5)      Low cost. Application is a low cost if comperes with full automatic applications.

 At the end the innovator has to look for ways to advertise his idea and make sure is adopted as a stable and flexible solution at a very competitive cost, so that we innovate helping others to innovate then our ideas become a commercial or business success.

Do you have an experience like this? Please let us know your success histories, they are always welcome.



  1. Buxton, Bill. “The Long Nose of Innovation”  January 2008 USA, recovered August 2012.
  2. Marin, Mario. “Five Star Challenge” November 2008. Delphi Automotive Systems. USA.
Feb 212012

Think Out of The Box

Think Out of the Box

Think Out of the Box as strategy to overcome paradigms

We need to think out of the box! use to say my best mentor ever, when we were facing complex problems on the manufacturing of automotive micro electronics and we needed non-Orthodox solutions, but what exactly means Think out of the Box? Few years ago I found my answer on an unexpected item, in a drawing my daughter draw in her painting classes when she was a child.  On her crayon drawing she drew a fish tank or a fishbowl, but what about that? What is so special about it and what it has to do with thinking out of the box? If we take a closer look we will see that this fish tank has two storeys and she provided to the fishes a door between storeys! I never considered a fish tank with storeys neither fishes may need doors to cross between them, so she thought totally out of the box!

It is evident that a child has very few paradigms, to become aware that fishes do not need doors and that there are not storeys on the ocean, rivers or lagoons, but she did not care and she let her creativity loose while painting this interesting fish tank, that by the way is one of my treasures that I keep from my daughter childhood and I have the proud to share it to you on this blog entry.

Think out of the box is left behind our paradigms, Edward DeBono (1970) propose provocations to put aside our paradigms, associating or connecting random words with ideas may help us to find creative solutions to problems we are facing, and these ideas may lead to unexpected results. These provocations are very well described on DeBono’s Lateral Thinking Book, he indicates that people use to think vertical, meaning building up ideas within their paradigms, then provocations lead us to think lateral, thinking lateral allow us to have fish tanks with storeys and doors to help fishes to transit between them just like my daughter did. 

DeBono said that thinking out of the box lead us to generate unusual ideas that changes concepts, perceptions and rules resulting in fresh creativity. At the end the concept of thinking out of box must be part of or language on the creative and innovation enterprise path in order to take apart our paradigms in the generation of new ideas that could lead to creative and innovative solutions to our problems, so then I invite you to Think out of the Box!  

Have you thought out of the box recently? Do you feel free to think out of the box at work? Please share your experiences, your feedback in important.


  1. De Bono Edward “Lateral Thinking” Harper Perenial First Edition, 1970 USA
  2. De Bono Edward “On Creativity Thinking” December 2006.
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