Seeing What Others Don’t: The Remarkable Ways We gain Insights

seeing
By Gary Klein (Public Affairs, June 2013).

Our selection
How do we achieve flashes of insight? And, at the other extreme, why do we sometimes fail to see the answers that are staring us right in the face? Gary Klein, researcher in psychology at MacroCognition LLC, an organisation that helps companies improve their decision-making processes, explores such questions via a collection of surprising true stories of random or groundbreaking insights. He recounts, for example, how Markopolos unexpectedly uncovered the Madoff affair and the identification of HIV by Dr. Gottlieb. Such flashes of illumination happen for different reasons. But, whether they result from a connection of ideas, a contradiction, or a strong creative drive, they always have one similar impact: they change the way we experience, perceive, feel, and understand a particular phenomenon. Yet, insights are rare because we live passively and constrained by rigid beliefs. Such flashes of insight are rare, partly because we often live passive lives, constrained by rigid belief systems. According to the author, however, companies can promote such by building the space for creativity and being receptive to conflicting ideas.

Why we chose this book
This book outlines how to think outside the box, which is valuable information for leaders striving to encourage more flashes of insight within their own teams. In a world where “seeing what others don’t” is a key competitive advantage, this book is a must-read.

Read our dossier

UsBD21902Idea Hunters: Making the most of the ideas that make the difference

Based on The Idea Hunter, How to Find the Best Ideas and Make Them Happen by Andy Boynton and Bill Fischer (Jossey-Bass, April 2011), a case about Pixar and Procter & Gamble and the interview with Stefan Bauer, Director of Global Learning and Leadership Development at Eli Lilly and Company, September 2011.
Business Digest N° 219, September 2011.