The Tasteful Application of the iChup™

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A soon to be conducted research study by a famous, yet remarkably unpretentious University located near Oxford, has yielded a highly plausible theory regarding the primary catalyst that supports a truly innovative mind.

The theory examined the resources used by the leading creative thinkers prevalent in the 1940s with those commonly found today, and the results were indisputable.

The majority of the great thinkers of the 1940s relied on a common, and most readily available thinking tool that transcribed their thoughts onto paper for private contemplation, mass distribution, and eventual critique amongst their peers. This tool was highly malleable and could be customised to the palate of the holder following long thoughtful periods of mastication. The tool was typically made from wood, with a pointed graphite core that blunted with continual use. Its name was the pencil.

However, with the advent of the computer, the role of the pencil slowly disappeared from the hand of the thinking person and was surreptitiously replaced with the keyboard, and the mouse.

The researchers, from that University located near Oxford, spent many hours studying the chewing habits of a small, yet highly representative sample of computer users (about three actually). Those observed, were found to exhibit no visible characteristics of creativity, but more importantly, not one of them placed any IT implement in their mouth. Besides shouting the letters Q.E.D. (quod erat demonstrandum) quite loudly following this remarkable observation, they smugly realised that they had indeed discovered the true supportive tool for innovation.

Yes, there is a direct correlation between those with a creative mind, and those that thoughtfully chew a pencil.

A few years later, a Research Scientist at Apple just happened to read the findings of this chewing link to innovation and a strategic project was immediately funded. Following the expenditure of many millions of dollars, the consumption of endless cups of soy-milk chai lattes with honey, the iChup™ was finally invented, even more quickly commercialised, and can now be seen in the mouths of many innovative computer users today.

As the name suggests, the iChup™ does have the appearance of a Chupa Chup, and the method of operation is indeed via mouth placement, but that is as far as the similarly goes as the iChup™ has many more mind pleasing features.

Feature 1: Bluetooth Connectivity
The iChup™ has a small surface sensor that measures the tension applied by your teeth as the device is gleefully moved around your mouth thereby ensuring minimal dental damage. The measurement output can be linked via Bluetooth to your computer, or your mobile phone utilising the iChup™ App.

Feature 2: Stress Relaxation
For those thinkers that are stressed, the iChup™ has been designed for under tongue placement. Once in position, the iChup™ has a range of vibration settings that can be selected by the user to obtain maximum stress relaxation.

Feature 3: Taste
The iChup™’s hollow centre has been designed to accommodate a variety of tasteful liquids that are pleasantly discharged over an 8 hour workday. A range of flavours can be purchased, the more popular ones being mint, cola, honey, and for those that like the taste of pencils, there is even a special wooden one.

The iChup™ has been a real success for Apple and one that reinforces that old saying; “Don’t Forget the Past. Learn from It”.

And yes, I still like to use a pencil, still have the taste for it, and find that many creative thoughts quickly appear when applied to paper.

The Theory of Toe-Show

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There is a little known, yet so very powerful, antique humanistic theory that is the key foundation in the development of creativity in the corporate office.

This theory has been in existence since the time of primitive man, reached its peak during the ancient Greek and Roman eras, and then regrettably, rapidly diminished with the advent of a more mobilised lifestyle and technology. Fortunately, we have all experienced momentary glimpses of its glory when we are imbibed in our unprotected casual or social interactive home state, but it is rarely seen in its natural physical form in the business environment.

For those exclusive individuals that are in the know, it is called the Theory of Toe-Show. Yes, this important theory relates to your feet, more precisely, your naked feet, unprotected by socks, stockings or shoes, but fully bare to the eyes of the world.

As you ponder the machinations of the Theory of Toe-Show, try and visualise yourself arriving home from the corporate office after a long, hard mind-draining day. What is the first thing that you do to alleviate and rectify your highly-strung mental state? Yes, you take your shoes off and introduce your poor bound feet to a world of nakedness and comfort, and typically exclaim an audible sigh of relief at the attainment of extreme personal satisfaction. Your mind quickly appreciates this mental toe showing and immediately responds with an unhindered release of creative thoughts that would never be aired in your corporate state of status quo.

Prior to the advent of shoes, our feet enjoyed a fully naked status as they were gleefully exposed to the full ambience of their geographic surroundings. The Theory of Toe-Show states that there is a direct link between your feet and your innate creativity. The more you cover your feet with shoes (and such-like), the more your mind is masked from the innovative sparks of your native imagination.

Think of the great Greek and Roman philosophers, their military leaders, their extraordinary astronomers, and their other leading and memorable personas. The origin of this creativity was indeed their minimalistic footwear. Yes, they wore sandals, or just wandered around quite content in bare footed bliss, fully aware that this was the source of their creative intelligence.

So next time you are trying to develop a culture of creativity and innovation in your corporate office, the answer is simple. All you need to do is to implement the Theory of Toe-Show and leave your shoes at the office door and many ideas (and potentially some odours) will quickly prevail.

 

Recognising Innovation within the Corporate Cave

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I sat with a smug facial expression cross-legged on the lumpy dirt floor and surveyed my surroundings with intense pride. It was raining outside, yet no drops were seeping through my hand built stonewalls, and no streams of muddy water had eventuated within the precincts of my large cave.

My nineteen bɛərns (or was it twenty? I’d lost count over the various moon cycles) were playing happily with the latest fashion coloured pebbles that I had found in the adjacent dry riverbed. I watched them with interest as they quickly mastered the process of carving their individual hieroglyphic names into the rough rock walls with purpose and enthusiasm.

From under my long shaggy eyebrows, I peered at the mother of my children as she gestured that it was time for me to get off my naked hairy backside and go outside and slaughter a foreboding baby dinosaur, as the children were getting hungry and restless. As I was an obedient husband, knowing that any grunting retort was useless, I grabbed my large pointy wooden club, wiped the dark dry dust of my hairy torso and went outside the cave and sought out our dinner.

After a couple of days wandering the rugged countryside, I returned in a rather weary state with a large amount of dinosaur meat that was fully encapsulated within its dead body.

Now for the cooking process. I marvelled at the technology that my eldest son displayed as he used a flint rock and some dry bark to which various small sparks of fire eventually propagated. His days at the local Rock University had certainly paid off. I just wish that I had been born in the year 70,000,032 BC, rather than 30 years earlier!

After we had all eaten a large quantity of rarely cooked meat, I once again sat down crossed legged on my hairy bare bottom and watched my walls.

Now that I had some time to relax, I recalled a small box with white red headed sticks that I had found in my hunting dinosaur travels. If I were able to read, I would have seen a label on the box that identified the article as “safety matches”. How they got into the year 70,000,032 BC, I will never know, not that I really care because I have no idea as to their use, nor benefit. Instead, I jammed the box into a hole in my cave wall and plugged a wind draught that was causing the smoke from the fire to extinguish.
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Let’s now move forward to the year 2015 AD.

If we were that hairy-bottomed caveman, and we had found those matches, we would have put them to good use and initiated the fire with the striking of a strategically placed burning match head. However, if we don’t recognise new technology, or innovation, we tend to keep repeating the same old trusted and proven boring processes.

The key is to have an open mind and to continually observe and accept different ideas, or thoughts, as they may lead to a new way of doing things within your business. Diversity of thought should be encouraged, and your work environment should facilitate different employee perspectives, that way, innovation will have a chance to prosper and not be stifled.

So make sure that you and your work colleagues “think outside the cave”, and should any of your workers continually be dusting their bottom, well, they don’t have a place in your business!

Doff your Hat

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There are reports of a substantial “theory” currently circulating amongst the higher echelons of academia and global business leaders that is causing the hair of many University Deans and CEOs to stand on end. This “theory”, soon to be published in “The Victorian Business Review”, provides many clues as to its origins, and also some potential thoughts that might just be useful in your business.

The basis of the “theory” goes back to the ancient days of the coronation ritual associated with Monarchs, Popes and other significant leaders and thinkers. The historical symbol fundamental to this “theory” is portrayed by the wearing of a Crown (if you are a Royal), the Papal Tiara (if you are a Pope), a Mitre (if you are the Archbishop of England), or a Tudor Bonnet (should you be a higher academic).

But the “theory” doesn’t focus on the head ornament. No, the “eureka” moment of discovery for those working on this “theory” as they tirelessly searched through endless archives and other old paraphernalia, was what was found under their hats! Yes, they discovered nothing, in other words, a very bald-head, one in which hairs no longer resided.

Their “research” found an inverse direct causal link between the number of hairs situated on one’s head and their IQ. Their “findings” indicated that those with a very smooth and shinny head were most gifted in the intellectual department.

These history records suggest that baldness was quite rare in the ancient years and that many people aspiring to thinking greatness shaved their heads in order to pretend that they were amongst the prized ranks of hairless head grandeur. (Note: It is interesting to note that many men today are still following this fashion trend!)

Those with a truly bald-head are known to be very caring and considerate people. It is for this reason that these great leaders in history decided to adorn a hat so as to disguise their lack of hair so others less fortunate (who had a full head of hair) felt less insignificant in their intellectual prowess.

If you be a CEO, this “theory” provides a timely opportunity for your business should you be embarking on a program of innovational change. The answer is indeed most obvious. All you need to do is to employ more bald headed people. Or, should you not be able to afford the high wages associated with these privileged intellectual thinkers owing to their high corporate demand, then just hire a few hairdressers and encourage some head shaving of employees that look like they may have the bald-headed potential.

Souvenirs of Business Exploration

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Centuries ago, the role of the Explorer provided many governments and monarchies in power with a strategic and valued opportunity to learn about new civilizations and philosophies. The Explorer’s discoveries and insights led to the establishment of a variety of new and powerful trading colonies that provided economic opportunities for financial gain and cultural exchange.

History provides much detail about the exploits of these Explorers, and the personal characteristics, traits and resilience required to be successful in this role. But have we considered how their experiences influenced their home life and those that frequented this establishment?

If any of you have travelled overseas, or extensively within your own country, you have most likely gathered a large array of souvenirs to remind you of where you have been. I suspect, that this would be the same situation for the Explorer.

The Explorer’s home would be a kaleidoscope of souvenirs from all around the world which when prompted by the visitor inquiring on the specific artefact, would initiate a masterful story of how it was obtained. I’m sure that many an informative dialog over a most enjoyable dinner party with a group of attentive guests would have prevailed. Those partaking of the experience would propagate this novel information with their family and friends leading to an expanded and continued dissemination of this new worldly knowledge.

Let’s now focus our attention on how this can be applied in the corporate office.

In business, although the official title of “Explorer” does not currently exist, many employees have this activity as part of their work function (eg New Business Development, R&T, Marketing, Finance, etc). However, what is lacking is the opportunity for the “Business Explorer” to furnish their travelling exploits back in the corporate office. There is no dedicated “Explorer’s Room” in which business souvenirs and other impressive booty can be pinned to the wall or placed on a mantelpiece above the fire, just like in the Explorer’s home to prompt further discussion and interest. Some organizations try to do this via visit reports and other office communications, but the impact is quickly lost, particularly with the continual bombarding of daily E-mails.

So why not establish an “Explorer’s Room” (or wall, if space is limited) in the corporate office that is dedicated to the “Business Explorer”? Just like in the Explorer’s home, these souvenirs of external inspiration and travels could then be discussed and shared with other employees in an informal setting, maybe over lunch, to generate interaction and dialog. For those businesses with many offices, why not have a virtual “Explorer’s Room” and schedule employee discussion via webcasts? Who knows what creative and innovative ideas might be developed?

The first step is to recognise the importance of the role of the “Business Explorer” in your organization in seeking out and identifying new ideas that are not currently in operation in your organization.

The second step is to then share these “souvenirs” with the rest of the business. To do this, consider the establishment of the “Explorer’s Room”.

The third step, and most important, is to have business leaders in the organization tasked with actioning the key learnings generated from these “souvenirs”. However, these leaders need to have vision, be bold and progressive, and dare to be different. For the Explorers of yesteryear, these people were typically the King or Queen, once they had made a decision to proceed, no bureaucracy dared to stand in the way of implementation!

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