At our February meeting, Stephen Santore spoke to us about how type theory provides a foundation for encouraging us to reach for that expanded potential we have by harnessing all four mental functions and developing our psychological opposites.
1. There are nametags and crayons on your table. Make a nametag for yourself.
Some people drew; some wrote. Some used one color; others used multiple colors.
Did you wish you had more time? Something other than crayons? Did you think the exercise was silly? Did you wish you were outside? How does your Type affect the way you think about things like this exercise?
2. There are paperclips at your table. How long can you get a paperclip to spin without leaving the surface of the table.
Some people poked the paperclip with a finger or set a pen (or another paper clip) into the round end and spun it around that point. One member bent his paperclip into a top and set it spinning to the oohs and aahs of the room.
Why did we all get up and crowd around that member? What made his solution worthy of appreciation? Were our own solutions less worthy? If we got the paperclip to spin, was that not a solution to the problem? Hint: we weren't asked to create a top from a paper clip. How would the solutions have been different if we had been asked that?
One member remarked he sees patterns and likes puzzles that require looking for patterns. With this [paperclip] exercise, he said, "it wasn't about patterns, so it didn't grab my attention".
Key Elements of Innovation
Steve suggests that innovation has four key elements, in a cycle. The cycle does not have to start at any particular location.
You may be given an objective by your manager or a client. Or, you may start in the "collect information" phase, because you saw something that caught your attention and spurred your imagination.
The last group exercise was for each table to consider an objective: come up with a new pancake mix. Some groups talked about things like ease of preparation - a mix that needs no stove or skillet so it would wrk on a camping trip or mix that needs no water. We all applauded the group that came up with "Marijuana pancakes" - the more you eat, the more you want!
Steve left us with the idea that we can all harness innovation if we use our preferred (and less preferred) ways of using perception and judging, with a bit of thought and imagination for what could be.