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Audio zapis razgovora:

Transkript razgovora:

Ivan Minić: Poštovani slušaoci i gledaoci pojačalo podkasta, dobrodošli u 43. epizodu. Ovoga puta nešto malo drugačija situacija jer će ovo biti prva epizoda do sada koju smo uradili na engleskom. Za slučaj da vam ne odgovara da slušate sadržaj na engleskom, transkript koji bude bio na sajtu će biti preveden tako da možete da pročitate transkript. Ipak, mislim da većem delu naše publike neće biti problem da slušaju na engleskom, a razlog zašto slušaju na engleskom je naš današnji gost, moj dragi i veliki prijatelj. Zadovoljstvo mi je da predstavim svog dobrog prijatelja Dejva Birsa. 

Dave Birss: Hvala! Drago mi je što sam ovde. Izvinjavam se što ne razgovaram sa vama na srpskom, molim oprostite mi. 

Ivan Minić: Pa, tek vam je treći ili četvrti put kod nas – očekujem da ćete u narednih par poseta naučiti osnove jezika! 

Dave Birss: (smeh)

Ivan Minić: Dejv je poseban gospodin i meni veoma dragi prijatelj. Pisac, svojevremeni stručnjak za marketing i čovek koji je proveo poslednjih par godina boreći se sa nekim komplikovanim pitanjima, ali ne na uobičajeni način. Zašto to govorim? Prošle godine ste izdali četiri… ili pet knjiga? 

Dave Birss: Tako je, prošle godine bio sam… ima četiri ili pet knjiga koje sam sam napisao, a učestvovao sam u izradi ukupno sedam knjiga samo prošle godine – bilo je neverovatno. 

Ivan Minić: OK.

Dave Birss: A to je zato što sam Škot. Na novogodišnje veče pogledao sam i video da na polici za knjige imam otprilike ovoliku prazninu ( pokaza on veličinu pružajući svoje ruke, što je noćna mora za podkast), pa sam pomislio “Neću da kupujem knjige!” i onda sam ih eto napisao. Tako da, da, izdao sam par knjiga prošle godine i doprineo nekim drugim knjigama i ilustrovao knjigu. 

Ivan Minić: Na početku, kada smo se prvi put upoznali, pričali smo kako bi bilo dobro da uradimo, znate, reklamiranje i marketing da dobijemo više reakcija, budemo primećeni i slično. Posle toga, u narednih par godina više ste se fokusirali na kreativnost kao koncept, ali ono što sam ja oduvek voleo kod vašeg pristupa je činjenica da vi razbijate iluzije i zablude oko toga da je kreativnost nekakav bogom-dani talenat i da morate da, znate, budete nekakva specijalna osoba rođena pod određenim okolnostima i slično. Da je to nešto što se može naučiti, da je to… to je veština. To je, recimo, sistem koji možete savladati. 

Dave Birss: Rekao bih da je to stav, verovatno, koliko i bilo šta drugo. 

Ivan Minić: Kako ste se otisnuli u te vode? Kako ste počeli da razmišljate o tome? I koji je bio vaš proces u spoznavanju ključnih stvari? Kakve zaključke ste izveli iz čitavog procesa?

Dejvovi počeci

Dave Birss: Pa ja potičem iz reklamne industrija koju sam napustio u 2010-toj. Od tada sam bio kreativni direktor nekoliko agencija. Da ste me tada pitali znam li šta je to kreativnost, odgovorio bih potvrdno. Onda sam odlučio da pokušam da rešim probleme koji su bili veći od industrije reklamiranja, veći od samog marketinga. Počeo sam da sarađujem sa kompanijama i da im pomažem u stvaranju ideja koje su mogle završiti i kao gotov proizvod. Radio sam sa naftnom industrijom da bih video kako se načinju izvori nafte ispod mora. Tako da, znate, sarađivao sam sa raznim industrijama u stvaranju ideja i rešavanju problema. Glavna stvar koju sam otkrio je da je sama reč kreativnost problematična jer mnoge pretpostavke koje ljudi imaju o njoj su od početka pogrešne. 

Razbijanje mitova o kreativnosti

I tako što sam više ja, onda – jer sam veoma radoznao i željan znanja, počeo sam dosta da čitam i da sprovodim sopstvene eksperimente. Počeo sam da istražujem šta je to zapravo kreativnost i kako da postanemo bolji u smišljanju ideja. I sada kada sam o tome napisao nekoliko knjiga i odradio svo to istraživanje i dosta se načitao na tu temu, mislim da sam sada još manje ubeđen da znam šta je to zapravo kreativnost nego što sam bio kada sam radio u reklamiranju. Mislim da postoji toliko nesporazuma da stvarno moramo prvo sa time da se izborimo jer većina ljudi to pogrešno razume, to je moje mišljenje. 

Ivan Minić: Hajde da pokušamo da razbijemo neke od tih zabluda. Da vidimo, koje su najčešće zablude koje ljudi imaju o kreativnosti? Jedna od njih, naravno, je to da je to nekakav bogom-dani talenat i da je ta neka specijalna, nadarena osoba jedina koja može da postigne “kreativnost” zahvaljujući tim svojim talentima. 

Dave Birss: Tako je. Mislim, svi smo mi različiti ljudi – čak i jedan čovek tokom istog dana, ako mu date iste informacije možda će zavisno od konteksta da reaguje na različite načine. Možda je tada umoran ili to zavisi od trenutnog vremena napolju. Tako da dajemo različite odgovore, ali ta ideja da postoje neki ljudi koji poseduju taj specijalni talenat a drugi to nemaju, prosto ne verujem da je to tačno. Čak ne verujem nužno da na samom početku učimo da budemo kreativni, dok neki ljudi nauče da budu šašavi. Ipak, mislim da većina ljudi vremenom nauči da bude ne-kreativna. Neko će sebi da kaže “O, ovaj crtež koji sam sada uradio nije dobar, to mora da znači da ne umem da crtam”. Ima studija koje su urađene sa decom. Ako dovedete petogodišnjake i date im bojice i kažete im da nacrtaju vanzemaljca, oni će nacrtati nešto. I biće užasno. Izgledaće grozno, ali oni će vam to predati puni ponosa. Onda, dovedete osmogodišnjaka da vam nacrta vanzemaljca, oni već počinju sa pitanjima “Čekaj, kako to misliš? Šta, jesu li bolji u crtanju od mene?” I onda će vam nacrtati nešto što su već negde videli ranije – nečiju tuđu ideju o tome kako izgleda vanzemaljac. I tako mi polako ograničavamo sami sebi mogućnosti i ideje koje nam dolaze u glavu. Pre mnogo godina NASA inženjer je odradio studiju, mislim u 1950-tim godinama, i zaključio je da 98% dece od 4-5 godina se rankiraju u domenu genija po pitanju kreativnog razmišljanja. Genija! 98%! Kada doguramo do 30-te godine, taj procenat pada na 2%. To je neverovatno! Istina je da vremenom gubimo sposobnost širokog razmišljanja. Mnogo toga što ja radim svodi se na to da stvorimo situacije koje razbijaju barijere i dopuštaju tom talentu, toj sposobnosti koju mi svi imamo u sebi da izađe na površinu. Jer čak i najnemaštovitiji bankari, ako ih stavite u pravu situaciju, mogu da smisle dobre ideje. I zato, zato ja stvarno mislim da je to sjajno. 

Ivan Minić: Setio sam se jedne stare šale. Učiteljica u zabavištu pitala je devojčicu šta to crta, i dete je odgovorilo da crta boga. Ali, niko ne zna kako bog izgleda? E pa, znaće za oko pet minuta! Tako da u pravu ste, u mnogim situacijama i u mnogim socijalnim interakcijama postoje blokade i ograničenja i posle nekog vremena ljudi se naviknu da igraju samo na sigurno, što je u redu ponekad. Ali kada pokušavate da smislite nešto novo, to verovatno nije najbolji način. 

Dave Birss: Svodi se na pitanje da li želite da ponavljate ono što ste već videli sa istim rezultatima ili hoćete drugačije rezultate? Znate, za neke stvari je pogodno dobiti iste rezultate. Biću iskren, kreativnost nije uvek pravo rešenje za svakoga. Ne bih želeo…

Ivan Minić: … da moj hirurg bude kreativan.

Dave Birss: Ne! Moj zubar, pilot mog aviona. Žao mi je, ali određene stvari bih veoma želeo da se rade na određeni način. Ali, ima situacija, to mi postaje sve jasnije, gde se u svetu biznisa ljudima sve više i više traže ideje. Ljudima koji nisu zbog toga zapošljeni. Ali, eto, u situaciji su da im se traži da smišljaju ideje. Niko ih nije naučio kako da to rade. Nalaze se u okolini koja je potpuno ubitačna po njihovu sposobnost da smišljaju ideje. A ipak, njihove kompanije im upravo to traže. I to je jedan od razloga, verujem, zašto kompanije često nisu zadovoljne idejama koje dobijaju od zaposlenih i zašto inovacija… postoji Makenzijeva studija od pre par godina koju često citiram koja kaže da mislim oko 86% direktora veruje da je inovacija od presudnog značaja za budućnost njihove kompanije, a samo 6% direktora je zadovoljno inovacijama u svojim kompanijama. To znači da je nešto krenulo naopako, veoma naopako. Ili ne dobijaju dobre ideje, ili ih dobijaju ali ih ne sprovode u delo.

Ivan Minić: … Ili dobijaju prave ideje, ali im se ne dopadaju. 

Dave Birss: Tako je, stvarno loše procene postoje. 

Kreativnost na radnom mestu

Ivan Minić: Kada razgovaramo o kreativnosti, jedna od tema koja uvek iskrsne sa ovim studijama i interesantnim, znate, informacijama i detaljima iz analiza – poslednjih godina sam čitao i slušao dobra TED predavanja takođe – jedna stvar koja je uvek bila značajna je koliko čitavom procesu doprinosi raznolikost u smislu pozadina, obrazovanja, etničke pripadnosti, polova, različitih ubeđenja u mnogim slučajevima. Mnogi od ovih faktora često izrode neke zaista posebne ideje – često imamo istu situaciju ali kroz različite stavove i onda izgleda potpuno drugačije. Kada su prisutna različita mišljenja, dođemo do zaključaka koji nisu vidljivi klasičnim sagledavanjem. Vi ste pisali na ovu temu, predavali, držali govore, obuke. Kako biste, znate, ako bismo mogli da sastavimo neku malu vežbu kroz koju bi naši slušaoci dobili ideju o tome kako da naprave promenu? Postoji li neki mali korak koji mogu da naprave u ovim situacijama? 

Dave Birss: Odgovor je da zaposle, po mom mišljenju, prvo treba da zaposle ljude koji su drugačiji od standardnih zaposlenih u vašem preduzeću. Mislim da je to prvi korak, jer dosta često nailazim na planove za zapošljavanje koji regrutuju gotovo šablonski ljude sa veoma sličnih fakulteta, veoma sličnih stavova i načina razmišljanja, sa istim nivoom iskustva, obično iz privilegovanih slojeva društva. I onda kada zaposlite gomilu sličnih ljudi prirodno je da dobijete gomilu sličnih ideja, sličnih pretpostavki, sličnog znanja i pristupa. I to vam ne pomaže, tako da prva stvar bi bila da pokušate da zaposlite i ljude koji nisu da kažemo klasični zaposleni kakve biste inače tražili. I ako ste…ima načina kada pokušavate da smislite ideje, zašto ne pozovete zubara, arhitektu, čistača ulica, striptizetu. Nekoga ko je različit i ko će vam doneti novu perspektivu, nova iskustva i promeniti razgovor koji vodite – to je stvarno vredno. Ali uz raznolikost – a ja zaista zagovaram jednakost i sve vrste zastupljanja – mislim da bilo šta, bilo ko različit od standarda i norme u grupi će da donese nešto važno za diskusiju. Međutim postoji i drugi deo toga o kome kompanije generalno ne razmišljaju, a to je nešto što ja zovem nesloga. Jeste značajno dovesti ljude koji su zaista različiti, ali onda ne možete da očekujete da se svi ovi ljudi ponašaju isto, ako dolaze iz različitih kulturnih, etničkih ili socijalnih okolina. Ako mislite da će svi oni doći kod vas i odmah se ponašati kao obrazovani belac – nemate pojma! Zapravo nemate… jer to je potpuna uvreda. Tako da, taj drugi deo koji ja zovem nesloga izaziva kompanije da pronađu stabilnost i način da organizuju, ohrabre i promovišu individualne razlike i da te razlike iskoriste na način koji pogoduje i zaposlenima i organizaciji. A to jeste izazov, kompanije koje uspeju da pronađu tu ravnotežu su one koje će zaista imati koristi od te raznolikosti. Toliko sam video kompanija koje prosto očekuju da se svi njihovi zaposleni iz raznovrsnih pozadina uklope u jedan isti kalup. Dobra radna kultura može da ubije bilo kakvu neslogu. 

Ivan Minić: Ako želite da inspirišete inovaciju, morate da budete otvorenog uma i moramo da, znate, da se opustimo kada je reč o određenim ograničenjima. I onda dolazimo do tog stadijuma gde kažemo hajde da radimo sto posto ovih stvari bezbedno a ostalo ne, što je veoma teško. U mnogim slučajevima kompanije imaju jedan sektor zadužen za inovaciju i kreativnost, a ostatak kompanije posluje po šablonu koji plaća račune, ali nije idealan. Možda to ipak ima smisla jer onda ovi kreativci imaju svoj mali svet gde su slobodni od restrikcija po kojima posluje ostatak kompanije i ne moraju da prate sva njihova pravila. Čak i tada može da bude teško da ljudima pomognete da prekorače tu barijeru i razmišljaju na način koji nije uvek potpuno bezbedan. Kako vi to radite? Teško je, kako se nosite sa tim? 

Dave Birss: Ima tu još jedna tačka kojoj bih da se vratim, ali ja gledam na budžete u kompanijama kao na investicije. Tako da, ako ste, ako imate sto eura da uložite i imate finansijskog savetnika, oni će vam reći “Uzećemo, uzećemo 80% vaše investicije i onda ćemo da napravimo investiciju malog rizika za mali dobitak”. To obično znači da će većina vašeg novca da bude prilično bezbedna, a možda ćete malo i zaraditi. To je super. To generalno želite da učinite. “A onda ćemo da uzmemo 20% i napravićemo investiciju visokog rizika za visoki dobitak”. Ovde imate visoku verovatnoću da izgubite taj novac, ali bogami, ima i male šanse da će da se vine u nebesa i da ćete dosta da zaradite. Tako da, ako imate budžet, recimo marketinški budžet, zato verujem da treba na njega da gledate kao na investiciju. Uzmite 80% budžeta i uložite ga u bezbedne stvari koje znate da će proći dobro, ali uvek imajte sa strane tih deset ili dvadeset posto i uložite ih u nešto što nikada ranije niste probali. Jer ako vam neko dođe za marketing, možda ćete im reći nešto što nisu kvalifikovani da razumeju ili nemaju stručnosti da procene, ali vi znate o čemu pričate jer ste u tom poslu i pratite šta se dešava u medijima i imate dobre instinkte da je ovo nešto što treba iskoristiti sada, ovog trenutka. Sad, ako oni žele da igraju na sigurno, odbiće vašu ideju jer je ne razumeju, ali ako uzmete samo tih deset ili dvadeset procenata koje možete da iskoristite na stvari koje su neispitane, lakše im je da vam daju poverenje i dozvolu da to učinite. Verujem da to pravi veliku razliku mnogim ljudima i njihovim budžetima za marketing i da je to nešto što zaposleni u marketingu treba da razumeju – način na koji treba da prate, na koji treba da troše sredstva i prave sopstvene marketinške planove. Mislite li da to pomaže sa vaše tačke gledišta? 

Ivan Minić: Mislim da pomaže. Mislim da postoji nešto što sam pročitao pre nego što su uradili Avis kampanju za rent-a-car ili Hertz – mislim da je Avis – i DDB gde kažu da agencija nikada neće znati sve o rent-a-car poslu što mi znamo, ali mi nećemo nikada znati onoliko o reklamiranju koliko oni znaju. Hajde da mi svi sa svoje strane uradimo najbolje što možemo i imamo poverenja jedni u druge jer ovo nije bankomat gde unesete podatke i novac automatski izađe. Nekada promašite metu ali naučite nešto iz toga pa sledeći put uradite bolje. Ali ako nemate priliku da isprobate nove stvari i eksperimentišete i ako je sve teško sa vaše strane onda, znate, onda jednog dana ako stvari ne idu kako treba morate da analizirate celu situaciju i sakupite podatke da napravite bolju procenu, a samo idete u krug i ne stižete nikuda. Tako da možda i jeste stvar u tome da verujete svojim ljudima i njihovoj proceni i naravno investirate u inovacije je nešto što… samo investiranje je nešto što činite za budućnost a inovacija je nešto što dolazi vremenom, nekada brzo a nekada sporo, što može da napravi razliku za kompaniju. To nije nikada centar poslovanja. Ni jedna kompanija se ne bavi samo inovacijom kao osnovnom delatnošću. Obično kada analizirate situaciju često oni koji su najinovativniji i koji su glasno pričali o tome nisu dovoljno poživeli, proizvod nije dovoljno poživeo da dočeka svoj trenutak. Tako da moramo da budemo pametni sa tim, ali ipak jedini način da kompanije prežive generacije i razna izdanja proizvoda je da rade stvari bolje, i da rade različito. Jer, znate, poboljšanje određenih procesa koji je- koji može da bude inovativan u malim merama ali to je samo, znate, mala razlika ponegde, a rezultat pravi možda malo veću razliku ali nije revolucionaran. Nije to novi proizvod ili nov način poslovanja. To je samo poboljšanje nečega što već postoji. To se može uraditi u bilo kom sistemu i kroz ponavljanje. 

Inovacije i disrupcija 

Dave Birss: Ali ja verujem da najuspešnije inovacije imaju upravo taj pristup. Mislim da postoji- postoji mit u zapadnim zemljama o disrupciji i da moramo da budemo disruptivni. Znate, čujemo to često na konferencijama, ljudi pričaju o disrupciji. To me nervira jer mislim da stvari ne treba tako da rade. Ne verujem da treba da uspete kroz disrupciju. Mislim da disrupciju treba da koristimo samo u prošlom vremenu i da je to zapravo način da, kad pogledamo knjigu Klejtona Kristensena “Dilema inovatora” koja je popularizovala ovaj izraz, da šta on zapravo kaže je da je to bilo kakva tehnologija koja se pojavi i neočekivano promeni tržište. To znači da ona mora da promeni tržište pre nego što je možete nazvati disruptivnom. Ali problem je da su svi to shvatili unatraške i sada pričaju kako moramo da budemo disruptivni, a to je nešto od čega kao kompanije moramo da se odučimo i razmišljamo na potpuno različit način. Mi želimo da naš lanac snabdevanja reaguje na potpuno različit način, oduči se od prošlih metoda i radi sada nešto drugo. Želimo da naši klijenti prestanu da rade nešto ovako i rade to različito. To je disrupcija. Ne želite to, to je užasno veliki rizik i veoma skup proces. To je užasno, užasno loš način poslovanja ako mene pitate. Ali kada govorim o načinu na koji inovacija zaista radi – veoma često pričam o 250-togodišnjoj istoriji pametnih telefona. Naravno ako pitate ljude koji je najdisruptivniji primer tehnologije u poslednjim godinama, rećiće da je to pametni telefon, to je najčešći odgovor. U redu? E pa, pre 250 godina, pre parne mašine imali smo zemlje koje su bile u ratu međusobno i imale su svoje brodove. I ako ste hteli da imate veće oružje, morali ste da imate veće brodove, većim brodovima trebale su veći jarboli a na vrhu jarbola vam je trebao neko da osmatra okolinu. A što ste dalje od palube i u sred paljbe oružja i kiše i vetra, kako ćete ljudima ispod da dovikujete šta se dešava? Improvizovali su i dovukli neko platno sa oštećenih jedara, savili ga u cevi, privezali za jarbol i dobili cev koja ide od vrha jarbola do dna – prosto i jednostavno. Čovek sa vrha bi doviknuo kroz cev “Brod na vidiku!” a ovi dole bi ga čuli. Fantastično! I to vam je početak. Posle toga je neki Škot izumeo parni pogon, pa parobrode i rešio da ugradi ovaj sistem u sam brod tako da je kapetan za svojim velikim kormilom na vrhu broda mogao da iskoristi isti sistem i viče na ljude ispod palube u pogonskoj sobi i oni bi razumeli šta im naređuje. I tako smo sa stare verzije došli na novu. Sada prelazimo na treću verziju kada ovi kapetani, ovi hrabri admirali koji su svi bili veoma bogati, su se vratili kući u Englesku i pomislili “Znate, to je bio prilično koristan sistem. Mislim da ću da ga ugradim kod sebe u kući!”. I onda su stavili ove cevi za dovikivanje u svoje kuće, pa su sa gornjeg sprata mogli da pozvone malo zvono koje bi sluge na donjem spratu čule, ili da viknu kroz cevi da im treba još pića ili cigara. A onda sledeća verzija je stigla sa dolaskom elektriciteta. Zapravo bilo je sada još lakše jer ste koristili elektricitet umesto cevi. I niste više morali da budete tačno ispod. Znači mogli ste da budete u drugom delu kuće, a opet je bilo slično prvobitnom sistemu jer i dalje vičete u nekakvu rupu, a pošto niste mogli u istu rupu da vičete i slušate, dodali smo odvojenu slušalicu da prinesete uvetu. A onda je to spušteno sa zida i stavljeno kao svećnjak na sto tako da ljudi nisu morali da stoje do zida kada pričaju. I onda su se te dve stvari postepeno spajale dok nismo dobili telefonski “hendset” koga se sećamo iz 1970-tih, ’80-tih, znate oni divni stari prenosivi telefoni. Onda u 1980’tim smo presekli onaj uvijajući kabl pa su sad ljudi mogli da hodaju okolo sa svojim radio-telefonom po kući. Onda, pa… zašto ostati unutar kuće? Možemo da imamo prenosive telefone, pa smo izašli sa njima napolje. I onda sada imamo tehnologiju uz koju mogu biti sve manji i manji a u njih guramo sve više i više i imamo mnogo više funkcionalnosti. Ekran je rastao sve više da nam da bolji pristup tim funkcijama. Sada imamo komad stakla koji u sebi ima kompjuter i telefon i kameru i sve ove neverovatne… 

Ivan Minić: … i televiziju.

Dave Birss: Tako je, sve ove neverovatne stvari u ovoj neverovatnoj spravi. Uporedite sada tu spravu sa onom cevi od uvijenog platna sa početka. Ima li sličnosti? Ne, nema funkcionalno i vizuelno nimalo sličnosti, to su potpuno različite stvari. Ali ipak u svakom koraku ovog čitavog procesa nije nikada bilo trenutka kada smo imali više nepoznanica nego poznanica. Uvek smo u svakom koraku prelazili iz poznatog u nešto što je samo malo nepoznato. Tako radi prava inovacija. Pogledajte šta je Apple uradio kada su stigli na tržište mobilnih telefona sa zakašnjenjem, a opet u pravom trenutku. Jer pametni telefoni su sa nama od ’94-te godine a oni su stigli na tržište, kada je bilo, čini mi se 2006. 

Ivan Minić: … Šeste ili sedme.

Dave Birss: Pogledajte sada iPhone a pogledajte originalni iPhone – od kojih jedan uzgred i dalje čuvam u fijoci. 

Ivan Minić: I ja takođe.

Dave Birss: Tako je, čak i izgledaju veoma slično, možete da vidite da su oni… 

Ivan Minić: … A da budemo iskreni, iako je prošlo dvanaest ili trinaest godina, prvobitna sprava je i dalje odlična. 

Dave Birss: Zaista jeste, a izmene su bile tako male. Čak, toliko male da svaki put kada izađe novi, uvek neki ljudi kažu “Ma, jedva da su bilo šta promenili”. Prosto… tako treba, to je dobra inovacija. Ne želiš svaki put radikalno da menjaš proizvod. Želiš konstantno da ga poboljšavaš. Pogledajte Nike Air… prve Nike Air su se pojavile čini mi se 84-te, Air Max. Zapravo prva verzija Nike Air-a je izašla još u sedamdesetima pod imenom Tailwind. Tailiwind su imale mehurić vazduha u peti, ali niste mogli da ga vidite spolja. To znači da su morali da ga reklamiraju i da kažu ljudima da postoji. 

Ivan Minić: … a ljudi ne veruju jer ne vide. 

Dave Birss: Upravo! Tako da se isprva nisu dobro prodavale, dok pet ili šest godina kasnije jesu. Izašao je Air Max 1 i u njima ste mogli da vidite mehurić. I tačno se sećam kada se patika pojavila i odete u prodavnicu i možete da gledate kroz mehurić i da ga stisnete i prosto ste samo iz toga znali o čemu se radi. Razumete da hodate po vazduhu. Bilo je genijalno. I onda pogledajmo šta se iz toga razvilo tokom godina, bila je čitava evolucija koja je počela od tog malog mehurića u peti. Onda smo imali veći mehurić koji je pokrivao gotovo čitavu petu. Pa onda mehurić i spreda, pa se to onda samo proširivalo dalje. Mislim da je sada jedini način da ide dalje to da čitava noga bude okružena mehurom vazduha. Pa ćemo onda čitavi biti u mehuru vazduha, samo da nam lice viri. Tako će biti za 20 godina, ubeđen sam. To se vidi svakim novim izdanjem, da uvek ima više poznatog nego nepoznatog. I to je pravi način, mnogo bolje nego da svaki put ponovo izgrađujete čitav koncept. Eto Apple verujem da nije ni jedan svoj proizvod ikada potpuno promenio. 

Ivan Minić: Ali ono što su prvobitno napravili bilo je nešto što tada nikada ranije nije bilo viđeno. Nije to bio prvi put da su ljudi videli telefon sa velikim ekranom u boji, ali nikada nisu imali direktnu interakciju sa takvim ekranom. Zašto ovo govorim? Zato što sam gledao pre par nedelja kada sam se vraćao iz Kine, na drugom letu iz Dohe imali smo sistem za razonodu tokom leta i imali su sekciju sa TED razgovorima, sa kojima ja imam odnos ljubav-mržnja (ali naginjem više ka ljubavi). Jedan od njih je bio, sad ne sećam se kako se žena zvala, ali govorila je o tome kako je bila jedna od mnogih ljudi koje su pozvali u pomoć tokom čileanske katastrofe sa rudarima pre nekoliko godina, iako njena stručna pozadina nije imala veze sa tim problemom. Govorila je o tome kako nesvakidašnje situacije i okolnosti zahtevaju nesvakidašnje mere i rešenja. Sedamdesetoro ljudi je bilo zarobljeno duboko ispod zemlje, i realno gledano bila je to bezizlazna situacija gde je katastrofa bila neizbežna. Ipak, uspeli su da ih spasu i izvuku na bezbedno žive i zdrave upravo zato što su doveli toliko različitih ljudi iz raznih pozadina u situaciju gde se individualni ego mora potisnuti u pozadinu. U takvoj situaciji bilo je lakše to učiniti jer ljudski životi su bili u pitanju – niko neće da bude egomanijak u toj situaciji. Svačiji glavni interes i prioritet je da izbavi što više ljudi, idealno sve njih, žive i zdrave. Tokom razgovora navela je koji sve profili ljudi su bili tamo i koliko je bilo različitih stavova i mišljenja. Neki od njih jesu radili u toj struci, u poljima koja su imala veze sa bušenjem i rudarstvom, ali mnogi su došli iz potpuno različitih pozadina i projekata. I ono što je bilo zanimljivo kod tog TED govora – uzgred, publiko, ako vas zanima možete ga potražiti a potrudiću se i ja da ostavim link – je da je organizacija u tim situacijama bila drugačija nego što smo navikli. Tako je, organizacija je veliki razlog zašto inovacija često ne uspeva. Jer u mnogim situacijama u velikim firmama imate nekoga ko je različit od ostalih i ima različite ideje ali mu posle nekog vremena neko iznad njega kaže da prestane da se ističe i da radi isto kao i ostali… 

Dave Birss: … to se meni dogodilo nekoliko puta.

Ivan Minić: Mi se već 30 godina bavimo ovim, tako da sve znam. Kako da… ono ključno kod korporacija, kod velikih sistema je da su toliko spori u svemu što rade. Čak i ako su optimizovali ključne procese koji ih održavaju kao kompaniju na svakodnevnoj bazi, sve ostalo – bilo kakva promena, čak i kada se ne radi o proizvodu nego o bilo čemu drugom – ide neverovatno sporo, zato što to nikome nije prioritet. Sa druge strane, ako imate grupu zaposlenih koji rade otprilike istu količinu posla za istu platu na istom radnom mestu, ne želite da se bilo ko od njih suviše ističe jer to je problem. U takvoj organizaciji, to se smatra problemom. Kako da od toga napravimo priliku, a ne pretnju. 

Šta ubija kreativnost?

Dave Birss: To se potpuno svodi na upravu. Mislim da je uprava u organizacijama, posebno poslednjih godina, obično prepuštena onima koji upravljaju finansijama. Ranije su vizionari vodili kompanije, ali sada su uglavnom ljudi iz finansija na čelu. Oni mere sve u dozama i sve što je njima važno je: ovo nam je cilj u ovom kvartu, moramo da ga dostignemo. To je sve veoma… to je sve dobro. To vam treba ako hoćete da vodite kompaniju, to je ono što vas održava na površini. Ali zbog toga dobili smo to uverenje da su ljudi radne mašine. Ako im date određeni zadatak, iz njih ćete dobiti određene rezultate. To je verovanje koji su usvojile mnoge kompanije, umesto da vide svoje zaposlene kao neostvareni potencijal. Ako pokušate da previše cedite svoje radnike videćete da neće samo da izgore od toga, već ćete da imate pravu epidemiju problema mentalnog zdravlja na radnim mestima. To se desi kada se fokusiramo na produktivnost, kada je sve fokusirano na rad, a ne na razmišljanje. Rad i razmišljanje moraju da se odvojeno tretiraju jer su veoma različite. Ako želite ideje, onda se fokusirajte na razmišljanje. Ako se potpuno fokusirate na rad i produktivnost tako što ljudima govorite da rade svoj posao na određeni način, u sistemima koji ih ne ohrabruju niti im dozvoljavaju da razmišljaju, onda je takav sistem fokusiran na produktivnost. To govori ljudima da vas samo zanima rad, a ne njihove ideje. I onda ljudi neće da razmišljaju u takvom sistemu. Ali ako hoćete da se izdvojite u poslu, onda vam je potrebno razmišljanje. Samo golim radom jedino što ćete postići je da pomalo povećavate efektivnost – kako da ovo umanjite, kako da ovo ubrzate… 

Ivan Minić: … kako da bude malo jeftinije. 

Dave Birss: Tako je, slažem se. To je trka do dna. Nije trka do vrha industrije, već do dna, jer jedino što onda možete je da počnete da umanjujete profitnu maržu a vaš proizvod gubi na originalnosti.

Ivan Minić: A uvek postoji neko ko to može da radi još jeftinije.

Dave Birss: Upravo tako. Što se mene tiče, mislim da moramo da se podelimo na rad i razmišljanje i da razumemo da ako vam trebaju ideje, fokusiranje samo na rad će u tome da vas ograniči. A ja sam… poslednja agencija za koju sam radio, jedna od stvari koje sam mrzeo tamo je što su imali metriku za to koliko je svaki radnik dobro iskorišćen. Za mene se, čini mi se, očekivalo da budem 92% iskorišćen. To znači da sam 92% svog radnog vremena morao sam da radim striktno ono za šta sam bio plaćen. Ali kao kreativni direktor, moj posao je bio da razmišljam, a u tom poslu je važno imati vreme da gledaš kroz prozor, šetaš, razgovaraš sa ljudima. A kod njih nije bilo tako. Morao sam da popunjavam vremenske tabele da objasnim šta sam, kada i koliko uradio, iako je veliki deo mog posla teško izraziti na taj način. Tako da u jednom trenutku sam – bilo je smešno – u jednom trenutku sam pitao “Da li mi možete reči koliko sam dobro iskorišćen?” a oni su mi rekli “Da, veoma smo zadovoljni. Iskorišćeni ste 123%”. Iskorišćen sam preko sto procenata. To je apsurdno, ali oni su bili stvarno srećni zbog toga. Možda sam ispunjavao svoje vremenske tabele pogrešno, ne znam. Ali nismo imali kulturu u kompanijama i to je takođe postalo problem. Produktivnost je rezultat kulture koja smatra da treba stalno nešto da radite. Ali kultura… ljudi o tome godinama govore kao o nečemu važnom što treba da radite. Ali ako imate kulturu koja vam govori “ovo treba da radite, ovakva osoba treba da budete, ovako mi to radimo ovde, ovo čini naš brend, ovo je kalup u koji morate da se uklopite, ne želimo da budete različiti ili individualac ili originalna osoba”. Tip kulture koja je dobra za stvaranje ideja je da ne govorite ljudima šta želite da rade ili budu, već da im date slobodu i ohrabrite ih da budu nešto različito. Da ljudi treba sami da odgonetnu kako da nešto urade i da to vredi pohvale, bilo da se isplati ili ne. 

Ivan Minić: U mnogim situacijama nije reč samo o završavanju posla već o rešavanju problema. Obično kažemo ovo je problem i vi treba da nađete način da ga rešite, ali često je i slučaj da kažemo ovo je problem a mi ovako želimo da ga rešite. 

Dave Birss: Tako je. 

Tehnologija i inovacije

Ivan Minić: Ako im sami dajete način na koji hoćete da reše problem, onda bilo ko to može da uradi. Možete da napišete program ili napravite mašinu. Ali mislim da je važno što ste pomenuli radnu kulturu jer u nekim kompanijama, znate, inovacija je takođe deo toga. Posebno u IT kompanijama – ja sam poslujem u polju IT-ja i marketinga. Poslednjih možda desetak godina preovladava verovanje da samo inženjeri treba da budu deo procesa razmišljanja. Inženjeri su sjajni jer razmišljaju na veoma struktuiran način i mogu, ako postoji rešenje, mogu da to naprave u proceduru koja će vam svaki put dati rezultate istog kvaliteta što je od velikog značaja za poslovanje. Ali ako je u pitanju nešto što nije do tada urađeno, onda verovatno za to ne postoji stalno ili trajno rešenje jer nijedno rešenje nije imalo kada da se ustali. Postoji toliko načina da se uradi ista stvar i ima ona stara izreka Bila Gejtsa koja kaže “Ako imam komplikovan problem, unajmiću lenju osobu da ga reši jer će ona naći najlakši mogući način da to obavi”. Zanimljivo je razmišljati o tome i mislim da ima dosta smisla jer ako govorimo o nekome ko je lenj to ne znači nužno da ta osoba ne radi ništa svakodnevno već da radi stvari na svoj način, pronalazi sebi prečice i olakšice. Ponekad takve stvari prave veliku razliku. Poslovi u kojima ima dosta ponavljanja i rutine će možda posle par decenija da obavljaju mašine i tehnologija jer je tako jeftinije. Mašina ne mora da odmara ili spava, a obavlja isti posao sa istim rezultatima, samo ih treba povremeno održavati a i to nije previše često. Ali kada već razgovaramo, imao sam situacije, možda par puta, da razgovaram sa mlađima kada odlučuju na koji fakultet da se upišu i šta da studiraju i u čime da se bave u životu. Dosta često se desi, bar ovde u Srbiji, da ti mladi nisu svesni da ono čime žele da se bave neće postojati ili će biti mnogo drugačije kada završe studiranje. Na primer, ako hoćete da se bavite računovodstvom, već sada postoji aplikacija za to, a za deset godina ta aplikacija će znati više o tom poslu nego bilo koji računovođa. Dok u mnogim drugim, znate, za novinare, biće mesta za neverovatne ljude da stvaraju neverovatne stvari, ali generalno gledano mnoge od njih već sada su generisane automatski, a ne napisane. 

Dave Birss: Tako je! Kada sam radio kao urednik konsultant za Drum časopis, to je bila jedna od mogućnosti koju smo razmatrali. Ne da zamenimo, bilo je samo, ne da zamenimo naše novinare, ali bilo je tehnoloških dostignuća koja su nas zanimala jer smo sagledavali tehnološke trendove u medijskoj industriji. Bile su te, da kažemo, mašine koje su učile, kao AI sistemi. Ne volim baš da koristim izraz “AI” jer mislim da je to generalno glupo skovan naziv, ali bilo je sistema koji su mogli da uzmu recimo sportske rezultate i da napišu nešto o tome što ste mogli da pročitate i da ne znate da je to napisala mašina – prosto su vam izneli podatke. 

Ivan Minić: To ide automatski.

Dave Birss: Tako je, mašina uzme suve podatke i pretvori ih u nešto što čovek, ljudski um, može da konzumira. Mislim da je to neverovatno!

Ivan Minić: A i prilično je jednostavno!

Dave Birss: Zaista jeste! A mi smo radili u vreme kada se razmatrala ova tehnologija. Počeli smo pregovore sa Watson timom u IBM-u i stvorili smo prvi magazin na svetu koji je uređivao AI. Uzeli smo Watsona da nam uređuje časopis i on je napisao neke od članaka. 

Ivan Minić: I bili su dobri. 

Dave Birss: Jesu. Bio sam fasciniran da smo mogli da uradimo tako nešto.

Ivan Minić: A to je samo početak.

Dave Birss: Tako je. Mislim da, ako se vaš posao sastoji od ponavljanja nekih akcija ili rutine… hoću da kažem da nije dobro imati repetitivan posao. Nije dobro za vaš um, a nije dobro ni za budućnost vaše karijere jer bilo koji repetitivan posao će jednog dana lakše, brže, bolje i jeftinije obavljati kompjuter. Bilo da je u pitanju fizičko ponavljanje ili mentalno, pronaćićemo način da kompjuteri obavljaju taj posao, tako da ne želite da radite bilo šta repetitivno. 

Kako negovati kreativnost?

Ivan Minić: Kada razgovaramo o kreativnosti – da se vratimo na početak razgovora – kada govorimo o kreativnosti, ima tu brojnih zabluda. U mnogim slučajevima ljudi misle da je to talenat. Pričali smo kako organizacije i firme mogu imati koristi od toga, ali hajde da pričamo o malom čoveku. Nekom malom čoveku koji je oduvek verovao da nema nikakve bogom-dane talente niti da je kreativan ili kreativna i da ništa ne mogu da učine po tom pitanju, da ne mogu nikako u sebi da probude kreativnost, snalažljivost, dovitljivost jer u svemu tome vam treba da razmišljate na neuobičajeni način. Da i to je teško. Osobito kada vam neko čitavog života govori da morate da, znate, idete u školu, imate dobre ocene, studirate, samo vi lepo iščitajte sve u tim knjigama, dobijte dobre ocene i onda dobijete neki posao gde radite za lepu platu. Posebno u Srbiji – u zapadnim zemljama nije baš tako – ali ovde uglavnom nađete prvi posao, radite tu četrdeset godina i onda idete u penziju. To nije, to neće nikada da bude tako. Imati alternativu, uopšte razmišljati o alternativi, zahteva da promenite način razmišljanja gde na uobičajeni način pokušavate da dobijete uobičajene rezultate. Kako neko može da sebe izazove i pomogne sebi da se razvije u tom smislu? 

Dave Birss: To sve ide kao što ste rekli unatrag do škole. Kažete da još u školi imate očekivanje da ćete ući u neki posao, ostati u njemu 40 godina i to je oduvek bilo vaše očekivanje. Ako tako razmišljate, to je užasno – da ostanete na istom poslu 40 godina. Mene užasava sama pomisao na to. Ono što se tu desilo je da je škola obeshrabrila vašu radoznalost. Radoznalost je najvažnija stvar. Zato petogodišnjaci gvire ispod živih ograda i pronalaze uginule ptice ili bilo šta drugo. 

Ivan Minić: I postavljaju stalno pitanja. 

Dave Birss: Tako je! Radoznalost je super! Ali ne, prestanite da postavljate pitanja. Dosta, dosta! I roditelji to obeshrabruju. Škola obeshrabruje radoznalost jer ne kaže deci “hajde da saznamo kako ovo ide” već im direktno kaže to ide tako i tako. Ovako rešavate ovaj zadatak. Nema dovoljno istraživanja i radoznalosti. Moramo da negujemo radoznalost. Srećom, to je nešto što možete da radite bez obzira na godine. Radoznalost nam je potrebna. Mozak nije kompjuter, nego procesor. On je procesor a da bi procesor radio morate da unesete podatke. Ako hoćete tehnološku analogiju, zamislite da imate Raspberry Pi koji vas je koštao oko 20 eura, ili koliko već košta Raspberry Pi kompjuter. Onda sa druge strane imate IBM-ov najnoviji superkompjuter i unesete u oba ta kompjutera neke stvarno, stvarno loše podatke. Pustite te loše podatke kroz algoritam na oba kompjutera i dobićete iste loše rezultate. Zapravo, izraz u programiranju za to je

Ivan Minić: … dobićete ih brže.

Dave Birss: Tako je! Izraz u programiranju za to je “GIGO” (garbage in, garbage out). A onda ako uzmete… ako uzmete stvarno dobre podatke i pustite ih kroz oba kompjutera, dobićete dobre rezultate iz oba. Samo će jedan od njih da bude sporiji. Ono što je ovde bitno je ishod, a ne nužno brzina, ako vam treba dobar rezultat. Isto je sa markama. Imate iste informacije koje vam ulaze u glavu kao što ulaze u svačije druge glave i dobićete iste rezultate od toga kao i oni. Zato što je radoznalost toliko ograničena kod mnogih ljudi, ljudi uglavnom samo dobijaju informacije masovnih medija. Odu na posao i dobiju iste informacije kao i svi ostali zbog ove snažne radne kulture. I onda svi zaposleni imaju isto znanje, iste pretpostavke, iste procese razmišljanja i svi se jave sa istim idejama. To nikome nije od vrednosti. Ako hoćete da dobijete nove ideje koje niko ranije nije imao, a obećavam da možete, veoma je jednostavno. Treba da zapazite stvari koje niko drugi nije zapazio. Ako ste radoznali i napunite svoj um raznoraznim informacijama, te informacije će vam dati jaču pozadinu da smislite bolje ideje. Tako da kada pokušavate da rešite problem ili smislite ideje, kockice se slože jer ko zna – možda ste nekada gledali dokumentarac o parenju morskih lavova i iz toga vam se izrodila ideja.

Ivan Minić: Naravno.

Dave Birss: A to vam može pomoći na isti način na koji se pravi tabela. Ne znam ali, unos hrani iznos a mnogi ljudi imaju veoma, veoma ograničeni unos. Tako da veoma je lako smisliti ideju, samo treba da ispunite um znanjem koje možda nije karakteristično ili rasprostranjeno i to će vas ubaciti u naviku da opažate stvari koje drugi ljudi nisu i vidite nešto što im je promaklo. Kada vidite nešto što vam se dopada, upitajte sebe “zašto mi se ovo toliko sviđa?”. Zapišite to. Zapišite po stavkama. I to je ono što ću pokušati da uradim sa ljudima sutra u radionici, da im dam neki unos i onda ih pitam šta iz toga možemo da naučimo. Uzmite ove stavke i onda kada treba da smislite ideje vratite se onome što ste naučili i iskoristite to. Potpuno će vam promeniti pogled na te stvari. Tako da bitno je sve što vam se dogodi pre trenutka stvaranja ideje. To je ono što zaista utiče na stvaranje ideje i onda možete da očekujete da vas vaše “brejnstorming” veštine spasu od toga da nemate ništa od vrednosti u mozgu. 

Ivan Minić: Imamo još par stvari o kojima treba da razgovaramo, a prva od njih je to da jedna od glavnih stvari zbog koje ljudi i kompanije igraju na sigurno čak i kada imaju priliku da urade nešto različito je njihov instinkt. Dosta često imate neke velike vođe koji će reći da je njihov instinkt doveo kompaniju tu gde jeste, ali u mnogim situacijama ti instinkti prosto govore hajde da igramo na sigurno, da ne rizikujemo. Zašto se to događa? I kako ubediti sebe da možda ne treba raditi tako? 

Dave Birss: Genijalno! Da. Hajde da se malo bavimo neurološkim naukama. Dakle, svi mi volimo da mislimo da se razmišljanje odigrava u toj sivoj materiji unutar naše glave. Mislimo da se tu odvija svo naše razmišljanje. Ali kao i sve životinje, i mi imamo rasprostranjeni nervni sistem. Kao gitarista, recimo, ja krenem da odsviram notu. Neću sebi svesno da kažem “Dobro, stavi prst ovde na petu žicu, na sedmoj dirki pomeraj ga napred nazad u ovom ritmu da dobiješ melodiju”. Ne razmišljam tako. Znate zašto? Zato što moje ruke tu razmišljaju. Imam mišićnu memoriju! Moja ruka. Moja ruka razmišlja! To me malo plaši, ali imamo drugu…

Ivan Minić: Ako razmišljate napravićete grešku.

Dave Birss: Upravo tako!

Ivan Minić: Kao kada recimo igrate košarku i promašite šut, deset od deset puta ako ste promašili to je zato što ste razmišljali o tome. 

Dave Birss: To je potpuno tačno. A drugi mozak koji imamo – a pri tome ne mislim na “onaj” drugi mozak kojim kažu da muškarci razmišljaju – naš drugi mozak je naš želudac, naš digestivni trakt. Tu imamo više neurona nego što čitav jedan hrčak ima u celom telu. Ima tu oko četvrtina mozga jedne mačke. Ono što je zanimljivo kod tih neurona je da devedeset posto njih putuje u gornjem pravcu. Zašto je to tako? Zato što ovaj deo vašeg mozga, vaš želudac, vaš enterički nervni sistem je dizajniran da reaguje na opasnost. Mnogi ljudi, osobito u poslovnom okruženju, misle da ti osećaji u stomaku dolaze iz prošlih iskustava, njihovog prošlog znanja. Moj stomak mi govori ovo, to mora da me moja prošla iskustva upozoravaju na nešto. Moja poslovna mudrost koju sam izgradio iskustvom mi govori da ovo nije dobra stvar. I tu greše. Tu potpuno, u celini greše. Kada imate neki osećaj u stomaku koji je stvaran jer vaš digestivni sistem ima u sebi funkciju da oslobađa hemikalije koje vas… koje ga pauziraju u opasnim situacijama… on se samo odnosi na pretnju. Kada se to desi, mnogi ljudi kažu “Oh, ovo mi daje loš osećaj u stomaku, imam loš osećaj” i onda podignu ruku i kažu “Ne!” i misle da su dobro uradili jer su poslušali svoj instinkt i iskustvo. Ali to nije bilo njihovo iskustvo, to je bio njihov strah. Dosta često vaš strah se aktivira iz manje očiglednih razloga. Ponekad ne zato što znate da je nešto pogrešno, već što znate da je ispravno. Tako da ako ste hteli da uradite nešto što nikada ranije nije urađeno, ako pokušavate da steknete neku prednost, istaknete se na tržištu, bilo koja nova ideja će vam dati taj nelagodni osećaj. Aktiviraće vaš strah u stomaku jer znate da će biti teško da “prodate” tu ideju poslodavcima. Uvek postoji elemenat rizika. 

Ivan Minić: Pre svega zbog nepoznatog.

Dave Birss: Tako je, toliko toga nepoznatog! Upravo nepoznatost i neizvesnost aktiviraju ovaj osećaj. Sad, to ne znači da je to što radite pogrešno. To znači da ste pronašli nešto što je neizvesno i tu postoje rizici. 

Ivan Minić: Ali i prilike. 

Dave Birss: Tako je. Onda ono što tu treba da uradite je ne da odmah reagujete negativno, već da analizirate zašto se tako osećate i protumačite to na pravi način. Kada rešavam probleme sa kompanijama da im pomognem u projektima, ako hoćemo da steknemo prednost nad konkurencijom ili tražimo nove ideje, pre nego što započnemo projekat ja sednem sa donosiocima odluka i zajedno napravimo spisak stavki koje svedemo na pet ili šest najvažnijih, a to su:
– Kako ćemo da presudimo uspešnost na kraju?
– Koji ishod ćemo da smatramo uspešnim?
Ako hoćete prednost nad konkurencijom, onda jedna od ovih stavki mora da bude da ćemo da uradimo nešto što niko ranije nije uradio ili što niko trenutno ne radi na tržištu. To mora da bude jedna od stavki. I onda ćete da imate tu i druge stvari, biće drugih načina da se protumači uspeh. To postane veoma korisno jer ono što radite na samom startu je, pogađate, fokusirate se na najvažnije stvari u projektu i ove diskusije često izmene zahteve i proces projekta. Kada uvide da zapravo žele ili traže pogrešne stvari. Tako da to je dobra stvar na koju se treba fokusirati na početku. Druga stvar koju tu postižemo je da su onda ljudi usredsređeni i tokom projekta, dok ga izvršavaju mogu da se vrate na ove stavke u bilo kom trenutku i uvere da su na pravom putu ili su odlutali od njega. Ako smisle ideju mogu da se upitaju “Da li ovo čekira sve stavke?” Ako ne, možemo li da prilagodimo ideju da to čini ili smislimo novu koja će to uraditi bolje? Onda kada predstavljate projekat lakše ga je prodati jer možete da kažete “Kada smo se sastali na početku, ovako smo se složili da biramo ideje”, sada ću da vam pokažem ideje i siguran sam da smo sve čekirali od samog početka. Hajde da pogledamo ove ideje koje su od početka filtrirane po ovim i ovim kriterijumima. Genijalno! Uspeli ste, potpuno ste uspeli. Toliko je lakše prodati na ovaj način i znači da ste dobili nešto što zaista postiže ono što ste od starta želeli da postignete i da se vaš sud na samom kraju ne oslanja na onaj osećaj u stomaku. Ako i imate tu reakciju, onda možete sabrano da razgovarate o tome zašto i da li je to dobra stvar ili ne. 

Ivan Minić: Da li želite da kažete da ovaj model treba da zameni “brejnstorming” sastanke? 

Alternative brejnstormingu

Dave Birss: Ne! Ima drugih stvari koje radim za… mislim, brejnstorming je… ne podnosim ih. Taj koncept je osmišljen 1940-tih, i nekih 10 godina posle toga sprovedene su studije, mislim na Jejlu ili Harvardu, gde su okupili neke studente – čini mi se 20-toro njih – i rekli im da smisle ideje koristeći brejnstorming tehnike, a sa druge strane još 20-toro kojima su rekli da slobodno smišljaju ideje u istom periodu vremena. Pronašli su da su oni koji su individualno smišljali ideje imali više ideja i to raznovrsnije, i da su njihove ideje bile praktičnije po proceni stručnjaka. Oni koji su radili u brejnstorming sastancima su se osećali ograničeno i zbog toga su smislili lošije ideje i to je bila trka do dna. 

Ivan Minić: Ošišali su krajeve.

Dave Birss: Tako je. Sve ono što je “štrčalo”, sve najzanimljivije stvari. Uklone sve to, dok ne dobijete nešto na kraju što je… kao toplo pivo. Prosto grozno. Tako da to je… brejnstorming, tolike studije su urađene o tome. Predlažem da umesto naziva brejnstorming koristimo skraćenicu BS (bullshit) što smatram da i jesu. Potpune gluposti. Tako da imam vežbe. Radim sa kompanijama da im pomognem u smišljanju ideja. Imam određene vežbe i izmeniću ih zavisno od toga šta radimo. Ima raznih načina da navedemo ljude da sagledavaju stvari iz različitih uglova i perspektiva, a ja koristim strukturu da nas kroz to sprovedem. Zovem to R.I.G.H.T. razmišljanje što je skraćeno za research (istraživanje), insight (uvid), generate ideas (smišljanje ideja), hone the ideas (unapređivanje ideja) i test the ideas (testiranje ideja). I tako čitavim putem treba da tražimo to nešto nesvakidašnje jer kada sam rekao da treba da ispunite glavu stvarima koje ljudi obično ne zapažaju, to moramo da radimo tokom čitavog procesa. Tako da istraživanje – treba da tražimo stvari koje ljudi obično ne uočavaju, umesto da samo “guglujemo” i znate, i… 

Ivan Minić: … Internet je odličan način da ispunite mozak stvarima…

Dave Birss: … istim stvarima koje svi drugi vide 

Ivan Minić:… I nekima koje retko ko vidi. 

Dave Birss: Da, da ima i toga… ako možete da nađete YouTube video sa manje od tri pregleda…  

Ivan Minić:… to je dobar početak. 

Dave Birss: Znači, istraživanje. Pokušajte da pronađete to i osobito tražite ljudski uvid jer mnogi problemi koje rešavamo uključuju ljude a ljudi su najnestabilniji deo svakog procesa. Tako da tražite ljudsku tačku gledišta. Može biti da ako se dugme stalno kvari a razlog tome nije loš dizajn dugmeta – to je zapravo standardno proizvedeno dugme. Razlog možda nije u dugmetu nego u povratnoj informaciji. Možda ljudi ne vide odmah da je pritiskanje dugmeta imalo učinak, pa ga udare jače. Tako da će mnogi ljudi da prijave dugme kao problem a to uopšte nije slučaj. Istraživanje će vam pomoći da to razumete. 

Ivan Minić: Dugme je samo indikacija da problem postoji.

Dave Birss: Tako je. To je vežba koju često sprovodim, prilično stara vežba. Jedan od direktora Toyote ju je smislio 1950-tih, a to je vežba od “pet zašto”. Samo pitate sebe zašto pet puta, toliko je moćno i genijalno i…

Ivan Minić:… i metod mnogih čevoro i petogodišnjaka. Oni često pitaju “zašto” brže nego što možete da im odgovorite. 

Dave Birss: Ja dosta često, kada konsultujem za kompanije, kažem im – vi me plaćate da budem dete koje vam dosađuje. Čak sam ponudio jednom svom klijentu da im izgradim repliku sebe koja će da im sedi u stolici i ispred nje je dugme i oni mogu da dođu i da ga pritisnu i da dugme samo kaže “Zašto?”. A kad ga pritisnu opet, ono opet kaže “Zašto?”. Pa opet i ono opet: “Zašto?” i tako posle pet puta dugme kaže “E sad znate.” Tako da istraživanje je važan deo sakupljanja svih informacija i veoma je vredno videti stvari koje drugim ljudima promaknu. Onda uviđaj – kada saznate nešto zanimljivo iz svog istraživanja. Na primer, često kažem ljudima da ako bismo saznali da svakog petka “Milenijalci” imaju 20% veću verovatnoću da obuju dve različite čarape, to je statistika, rezultat istraživanja. Interesantno je. To postaje nešto što u kafićima pričate ljudima. “Stvarno? Jeste li znali da dvadeset posto… “, ali nije od neke velike pomoći, bar ne još uvek. Uvid je razlog iza toga. Onda iznađete da je razlog iza toga to što je četvrtak novi petak – ljudi su počeli četvrtkom uveče da idu u provod a onda onako umorni i mamurni u petak ujutro ustanu i obuku šta prvo dohvate. I onda saznamo nešto što jeste od koristi. 

Ivan Minić: Metod iza ludila.

Dave Birss: Imamo razlog iza posmatranja. A to nam pomaže da smislimo ideje. Ta statistika od dvadeset procenata nam ne pomaže da smislimo ideje. Ali uvid nam pomaže jer sada znamo da oni idu u provod četvrtkom uveče, možda možemo da napravimo aplikaciju da im pomogne da nađu zanimljiva mesta za izlazak ili recepte za pića sa nižim procentom alkohola. Možda možemo da ih nagradimo da što ranije odu kući jeftinije plaćaju taksi. Možda petkom možemo da počinjemo sa radom kasnije jer znamo da će biti mamurni pa im dozvolimo da pomere radno vreme za jedan sat. Razne ideje se izrode iz uvida. Ali sama statistika ne pomaže puno. Ja više volim da navedem ljude da sami razmišljaju. Onda, ako imate sesiju za smišljanje ideja, ljudi dođu sa idejama koje su već smislili. Ne očekujete da odmah smisle ideju. Date im informaciju i onda smisli ideju, jer tako samo dobijete prve misli koje su najočiglednije i najmanje smele. Date ljudima da razmisle o tome, a onda im pomognete da grade na tim idejama. Onda naučite kako da ocenite te ideje na samom kraju. 

Ivan Minić: Kad kažete ocenite, mislite procenite.

Dave Birss: Da procenite, tako je, da odaberete najvrednije. Onda imate negovanje ideja, što znači da treba da razvijate ideju jer ono što dobijete iz ovih sesija nije uvek potpuno i besprekorno razrađeno. Često je u pitanju veoma široka ideja… 

Ivan Minić:… ili gruba ideja… 

Dave Birss: … a onda je razvijete da bude najstabilnija što može, da pogleda na druge načine izvođenja i vidite možete li da je napravite većom ili manjom, bolje usmerenom i slično. Onda treba da je isprobate, pretvorite u prototip, testirate ga dok ne dobije rezultate koje potvrđuju vaš način razmišljanja i iz kojih možete nešto da naučite a takođe možete da upotrebite te rezultate da vam pomognu da prodate ideju onima koji odlučuju na kraju. Umesto da kažete “Hej, imam ovu dobru ideju” a onda oni kažu “Pa gde vam je dokaz da je dobra… ” 

Ivan Minić: … imate dokaz koncepta… 

Dave Birss: … tako je, imate… ako ne možete da kažete da je neko drugi ovo uradio pre vas a ovo su rezultati, onda bar imate podatke da pokažete da ima nečega u tome. I opet, to je nešto što sam uvideo da mnogo pomaže kada treba da prodate ideju. Ako bilo šta hoćete da izvedete iz ovog podkasta, to je da ako hoćete da prodate ideju, glavne dve stvari su da imate testiranje koje to dokazuje i da ste sigurni da ste razradili kriterijume na samom početku tako da možete da ih koristite na kraju. 

Ivan Minić: Dejv, hvala vam puno za ovo o čemu smo razgovarali. Ono što sam takođe hteo da kažem, a mislim da sam pomenuo na početku, možda i nisam. Vaša knjiga o idejama je takođe u prodaji na srpskom već nekih par nedelja… 

Dave Birss: ..što je sjajno! Još jedna knjiga koju ne mogu da čitam! 

Ivan Minić: Vi ste jedinstveni u tome što ste već prevedeni na mnoge neke čudne jezike. 

Dave Birss: Imam knjigu koja je samo dostupna na makedonskom. Nisam čak ni… kada je izašla na makedonskom prvo sam odlučio da neću da je prevodim na engleski jer mislim da je urnebesno smešno da imam knjigu koju ne umem da pročitam. Tako da pokušavam da isposlujem da je prevedu na švedski i arapski. Mislim da bi to bilo sjajno. Više je neću izdavati na engleskom. 

Ivan Minić: Vaša knjiga na srpskom ima dosta vaših razmišljanja, studija, analiza i ideja o svemu ovome o čemu smo razgovarali. Šta budućnost donosi za vas? Koji sledeći poduhvat želite da postignete? 

Dave Birss: Trenutno radim na nekim eksperimentalnim filmovima za YouTube. Tako da sam… verujem da još ne razumem i ne znam mnogo toga u procesu kreativnosti. Toliko toga je već urađeno i toliko se izučava u laboratorijama, ali ono što mene zanima, jedna od stvari, su studije na radnim mestima koje istražuju kako dobiti bolje ideje od zaposlenih. Trenutno radim na nekim studijama. Naš prijatelj podkasta Relja, Relja Dereta – jutros sam se sreo sa njim da uradimo neka snimanja za te moje eksperimente jer smo uradili eksperimente koji su zapravo u mojoj knjizi. Tako da Relja je u mojoj knjizi, njegovi crteži su pored mojih jer smo uradili eksperiment da vidimo možemo li naučiti našu suprotnu ruku da crta. Ja sam desnoruk i svakoga dana tokom mesec dana sam levom rukom crtao autoportret. On je učinio isto, ali on je levoruk pa je radio desnom rukom. I samo iz toga smo toliko naučili. Tako da baš nas zanimaju eksperimenti. Imam neke LinkedIn kurseve koji izlaze početkom sledeće godine. Jedan od njih je kako upravljati ljudima da dobijete bolje ideje. Početkom godine će oni izaći. Takođe radim i na novoj knjizi sa mojim prijateljem Sun Ju-om. Napisali smo još jednu knjigu “Iconic Advantage” koja je izašla prošle godine. 

Ivan Minić: Sa sjajnom naslovnom stranom!

Dave Birss: Hvala! Ja takođe konsultujem, tako da… konsultujem firme. Firme koje žele da dobiju bolje ideje od zaposlenih, reše probleme i dobiju prednost nad konkurencijom, ja radim sa njima da to postignu jer sve to zahteva ideje, a idejama trebaju pravi uslovi. U tome im pomažem. 

Ivan Minić: Hvala vam.

Dave Birss: Nema na čemu! Hvala vama! I hvala što ste slušali do kraja, ako i dalje slušate i niste nas isključili – vi ste sjajan slušalac! 

Ivan Minić: Bilo je i za mene malo čudno i teško jer nikada nismo ovo radili na engleskom. U drugim okolnostima radio sam intervjue na engleskom ali onda ste i vi pred kamerom a vaš glas se drugačije snima… nadam se da je ovo bilo zanimljivo. Poštovani slušaoci i gledaoci nadam se da vam je bilo zanimljivo, a ovaj sjajni čovek ovde, moj dragi prijatelj, svake godine dođe na neku radionicu ili trening ovde i kada bude bilo ponovo prilike da ga upoznate i poslušate uživo neke od stvari i probate neke od stvari koje radi, predlažem vam da iskoristite tu priliku, a najbolji način da vas uverim u to, ako vam ovaj podkast nije bio dovoljan, je da pročitate knjigu. Kao jedno, da kažemo, posebno iznenađenje koje nismo najavljivali, podelićemo tri srpske verzije knjige u giveaway-u, tako da, molim vas da u komentarima na društvenim mrežama i ispod ovog videa, u suštini, u komentarima ispod ovog videa najbolje, na YouTube-u, ostavite svoje podatke i onda ćemo, kada bude vreme za naredni podkast izvući tri srećna dobitnika i podeliti sa njima Dejvovu knjigu. Dejv, hvala vam još jednom za ovaj neverovatni razgovor – radujem se sutra vašoj radionici. 

Dave Birss: Thank you. Hvala.

Ivan Minić: Dear listeners and viewers of the Pojacalo podcast, welcome to episode 43. This time it’s a slightly different situation as this will be the first episode so far we’ve done in English. In case you do not feel comfortable listening to English content, the transcript posted on the site will be translated so that you can read the transcript. However, I don’t think it will be a problem for most of our audience to listen in English, and the reason why they listen in English is our current guest, my dear and great friend…

It is my great pleasure to introduce my dear friend Dave Birss.

Dave Birss: Thank you. Lovely to be here! I apologize for not being able to speak Serbian. Please, forgive me.

Ivan Minić: Well, it’s been I think your third or fourth time here, so I expect within the next couple of times that you should learn at least the basic things.

Dave Birss(laughing)

Ivan Minić: David is a special guy. Very special friend of mine, a book author, marketing experts within his past and a guy who spent last couple of years dealing with some very tough questions.But dealing with them in the perhaps, not the most usual way. And why am I saying that? Last year.. you have four, five books?

Dave Birss: Yeah, last year I was… There’s four, or five books that I’ve written myself, and then last year I was involved with seven books, just last year alone. It was ridiculous.

Ivan Minić: OK.

Dave Birss: And it’s because I’m a Scotsman. And I started the year on New Year’s Eve and looked and there was a gap, it was about that big, he says holding his hands out which is terrible for podcast, in my bookshelf, and I thought: “I’m not gonna buy the books!”, so I sort of  wrote then. So I wrote, yeah, I brought out a few books last year and contributed to some other books and illustrated a book.

Ivan Minić: In the beginning, when we first met, you were talking about how we should, you know, do the advertising and marketing to get more reactions, to be more noticed, and after that in the past few years you focused more on the creativity as a concept, but what I like with your approach is that you are the demystifying, debunking creativity as something that’s a god-given talent, that you have to, you know, be a special person born in a certain region on a certain date and stuff like that. That it’s something that can be taught; that it’s something that…It’s a skill. It’s a, sort to say, system that you can learn.

Dave Birss: It’s an attitude, I guess, probably, as much as anything.

Ivan Minić: How did you get involved into this? How did you start thinking about it? And what was your process of identifying the key things and what’s your conclusion in that process?

Dave Birss: So, I came from the ad industry and I quit advertising in about 2010 and I’ve been a creative director of a few agencies. And if you’d asked me then if I knew what creativity was, I would say, I’d say yes. And I then decided that I was going to try and solve problems that were bigger than the advertising industry, bigger than just marketing. So I started working with companies to help them come up with ideas that might even be for product ideas. I was working with the things with the oil industry to look at how we cap oil wells under the sea. So, you know, working with all sorts of industries to come up with the ideas and solve problems. And the one thing that I discovered is that the word creativity is a problem because it’s so many assumptions that people just have wrong about it. So, the more I, I then, because I’m very inquisitive and curious, I started to do lots of reading, started to conduct my own experiments, I started to look at what actually is creativity and how do we get better at coming up with the ideas.

And now that I’ve written a couple of books on that subject and I have done lots of research and lots of reading. I think I am even less sure that I know what creativity was than when I was in advertising when I thought I knew creativity was. I think there’s so many misunderstandings that we really need to deal with because most people, most people have it wrong, I think.

Ivan Minić: Let’s try to debunk some of them. Let’s see what are the most usual misconceptions people have about creativity. One of them, of course, is that it’s some god-given talent and that while single person with that god-given talent it’s the only creative person and that’s something that only can be done and delivered by that person only.

Dave Birss: Yes. I mean, the thing is we are all different people; even throughout the day, give us the sam input we will respond differently at different times, according to context , according to how tired we are, according to what the weather is like outside. So we respond differently, but the idea that some people have got a special talent on this, and other people haven’t been given that talent. I just don’t believe it’s true and I don’t necessarily believe that initially we learn to be creative, and some people learn to be crazy. But I think that most people learn to be uncreative so over time, as people start to go “Oh, that’s not very good drawing. So, I can’t draw.” And, there are studies that have been done with kids. That if you get a five-year-old and you give them some crayons, and ask them to draw an alien for you, he will draw something. It will be horrendous, it will look awful, they’ll hand it to you with complete pride. And, then, if you ask an 8 year old to draw you an alien, they’re going to start saying “Oh, hold on. What do you mean? What, what, they are better at drawing than me!” And what they end up drawing is actually something that they’ve seen before, somebody else’s idea of an alien. So what we’re doing is we’re starting to restrict the possibilities the ideas we can have. So he finds there was a NASA engineer who did a study many, many years ago, back in the 1950s. I think it was, and he found that kids who were about four or five, 98% of them have like a genius ranking when it comes to creative thinking. Genius ranking! 98%! When you reach the age of 30, 2% of people have a genius ranking when it comes to creative thinking. That’s extraordinary! The truth is that we lose our ability to think broadly overtime. And a lot of what I do is try to create situations that take away the barriers to allow the talent the abilities that we all already have to come to the fore, because even people who are the most conservative bankers, you can still put them in a situation where they will come up with ideas. And that’s why that’s why I really love that.

Ivan Minić: I remember that there was an old joke. It says something like the teacher in the kindergarten asked a little girl what she was drawing and she says God. Well no one knows how God looks. They will in about 5 minutes! So, yes, in many cases, in many situations in many social interactions, you got blockages and you got limitations and after a while you start only doing the safe stuff, which sometimes is okay. But, if you’re trying to come up with something new that’s usually not the way to do it.

Dave Birss: Well, the question is do you want to be replicating the same results, or do you want to get different results? You know, for some things you want to replicate the same results. I’ve got to be honest. Creativity isn’t right for everyone. I don’t want..

Ivan Minić: … my surgeon to be creative

Dave Birss: No! My dentist, my airline pilot. I’m sorry. I want certain things to be done in a certain way. But there are times, I’m finding this more and more, studies are showing that in the world of business more and more people are being asked for ideas. People who are never hired on their ability to have ideas. But they’re being asked to come up with ideas. They’ve not been taught how to do it. They’re in an environment which is absolutely toxic for the ability to come up with ideas. Yet, these companies are asking for it. And it’s one of the reasons I think why companies are not happy with the ideas they’re getting from their employees and why innovation… There’s a Mackenzie study a couple years ago that I often site is that I believe it’s 86% of CEOs believe that innovation is vital for the future of their company. yet only 6% of CEOs are satisfied with their companies innovation. So something’s gone badly, badly wrong.

So either they’re not getting the right ideas, or they are getting the right ideas and they’re not executing on them…

Ivan Minić: … Or they are getting the right ideas, but they are not liking what they are getting.

Dave Birss: Yes, bad judgment, indeed.

Ivan Minić: When we are speaking about creativity, one of the things that always come up with these studies and interesting, you know, pieces of data and analysis. I was able to read in the past couple of years and watch nice TED talks as well. The one thing that’s a really been big deal is how much diversity brings to the table in these situations when I say diversity it can be diversity of backgrounds, educations,

ethnical diversity, gender diversity, in many of these cases most of these things bring something special to the table, and some different point of view in many cases. We just, we have the same situation, but from a different point of view, it looks completely different. And some different options are available that from standard point of view you are not seeing. You’ve been writing on this topic, you’ve been talking about this. You’ve been speaking publicly about it as well. You’ve been doing some trainings. How does it, you know, if we can make some small exercise for people to, you know, get the idea of what needs to be done to make a change. What’s the first small step they should do in these situations?

Dave Birss: Is to hire to, I think the first thing is to hire people who are different to the norm within your organization. I think that’s the first thing because what very often find that ad agencies that I’ve worked in had graduate recruitment schemes who would get people from universities who are all very similar; they thought the same, they’d have the same experience; they generally come from like quite privileged backgrounds. And what happens is when you hire the same kind of person you get the same kind of ideas the same assumptions, the same shared knowledge, the same approaches. And that’s the stuff that isn’t helpful, so the first step is definitely to try and get people in who aren’t your normal people. And if you’re… there’s one way of doing this when you’re coming up with ideas is you don’t even need to hire for them. You just, if you’re having sessions to come up with ideas, why don’t you invite in a dentist, an architect, the street sweeper, a poll dancer. Somebody who is different will come with a different perspective, different knowledge, and will change the conversation you’re having, and that is really valuable. But with diversity, and I champion all kinds of diversity, I think that anything, any people who are different to the majority, different to the norm in a group, are going to be beneficial, going to be positive. But there is a second part of it that companies haven’t even thought about yet, and it’s what I called divergency. So it’s all worthwhile getting people who are really different together into an organization, but if you expect them all to act the same, if you expect these people from different cultural, ethnic, social backgrounds to come in and just be like a well-educated white man, you don’t know nothing! You have actually… that’s an absolute insult. So the second part of it is what I call divergency in that stability of an organization to encourage and embrace difference, and to use that difference in a way that’s beneficial both to the staff and to the organization. And that is, the companies who manage to crack that are the ones who are really going to benefit from this because so many companies I’ve gone into they just expect people, regardless of how diverse they are, to fit into the same mold, and it’s this too strong a culture can kill any form of divergent thought.

Ivan Minić: If you want to inspire innovation, we have to keep an open mind, and we have to, you know, relax when it comes to certain limitations, and then comes to certain state of a mind saying let’s do one hundred percent of these things safe, but that’s really tough to do so in many cases we have companies that have one department which is in charge of innovation and creativity, and the rest of the company is working the regular stuff that’s paying the bills which is not ideal, of course, but perhaps it still makes sense because these these guys who have their own little community and can, you know, make some difference, get isolated and they don’t have to follow the way things are done in the main part of the company, but even then it’s still quite hard to help people make that switch that it doesn’t have to, everything doesn’t have to be one hundred percent safe. How do you do it? It’s tough. How do you try?

Dave Birss: There’s another point I want to come back to there but the way I look at budgets and companies is as investments. So if you are, if you’ve got a hundred euros to invest and you got a financial advisor, they’re going to say “We’ll take, we’re gonna take eighty percent of your investment, and we’re going to put into low-risk low-return investments.” That means that your money is probably gonna be pretty safe. And it might increase a little bit. That’s great. That’s what you want to do. “And we’re gonna take twenty percent, and we’re going to put into high-risk high-return.” Now, this stuff might lose your money on this stuff. But my goodness there is a chance that this is going to skyrocket, and you’re going to do really out of this. So, if you’ve got a budget, let’s say some marketing budget, then that’s why I believe you should be doing with it seeing it as an investment. Take eighty percent of it, even ninety percent of it and put it into the stuff you’ve always done. It will make you feel safer because you know this stuff. That’s great to put that into the stuff you’ve always done. But always make sure that you have got a little part of that set aside, a ten, twenty percent part of your budget which is to do the stuff you’ve never done before, to do the stuff is unproven, because if somebody comes to someone like you for marketing you might say something to them that they don’t have the understanding of the expertise to judge properly, but you know what you’re talking about because you know what’s happening in media, and you’ve got a good instinct that this is something that we should be taking advantage of just now. Now, if they were only going for safe they would say no to you because they don’t understand it, but giving, having that ten to twenty percent ability to spend money on the things that you can’t really quite prove yet that is then giving you the trust to be able to do that. And I think that that make a huge difference to most people’s marketing budgets, and it’s something that I think that all marketers should be understanding and it’s the way that they should be following, the way they should be spending their money, and the way they should be dealing with their own marketing plans. Did you think that would help from your point of view?

Ivan Minić: I think so. I think that there is this old note I read before they did Avis campaign for the rent-a-car, or Hertz, I think it’s Avis, between them and DDB saying the agency will never know about rental business as much as we do, but we will never know about advertising as much as agency does. So, let’s each of us do our side best and let’s have faith in one another, and it’s not the ATM machine where you enter something and the money comes out. Sometimes, you don’t hit the target you are hoping for, but you learn something from that in the next attempt perhaps you will be better. But if you don’t have the opportunity to test this and to experiment, and if everything is tough on your side that, you know, after one day, if campaign you have to analyze everything and if it’s not going right you have to pivot it somewhere you’re not having enough data to make better assumption. You’re just circling around, and you’re not getting anywhere. So, perhaps it’s, it’s a matter of trusting your own people, trusting their judgments, and, of course, investing in innovation is something…investing itself is something you do for the future and innovation is something that’s in some period of time, sometimes shorter, sometimes maybe quite long, something that can make a difference for the company. It’s not core business. No one’ s core business is innovation. And, usually, when you analyze the situation, in many cases, those guys who are the most innovative ones, and who talked loud about that didn’t live long enough, the product didn’t live long enough for it’s time to come. So we have to maybe be smart about it, but, still, the only way for companies to survive through iterations, and generations of products is to do stuff better, and to do a different kind of thing, because, you know, improving on a certain process that’s that can be innovative in a small dosage, but that’s just, you know, a small difference somewhere, and result it makes maybe a little bit more difference, but it’s not revolution of any kind. It’s not a new product, it’s not a new way of doing things. It’s just improving on what’s already there. That can be done in any system, that can be done through repetition.

Dave Birss: But I think that most successful innovation has that approach though. I think there’s, there’s a myth in the West about disruption, and it’s that we need to be disruptive. You know, we’re hear it at conferences all the time, people talkin’ about disruption. It annoys me because I don’t believe it’s the way things work. I don’t believe you become successful by trying to disrupt. I believe that you can only use disruption in the past tense to say that that disrupted, and it’s actually, it’s the way that when we look at Clayton Christensen’s book “The innovator’s Dilemma” which is the book that popularized the term disruption, that’s what he says is that it’s any technology that comes around and changes a market unexpectedly. That means it has to change the market before you can call it disruptive. But the problem is that people are putting the whole thing backwards and saying we want to be disruptive, and that is a thing that what you’re then doing is saying that as a company we need to unlearn what we’re doing, and do something completely different. We expect our supply chain to act in a completely different way and to unlearn the previous way and start doing this now. We want our customers to stop doing it that way and to do it this way now. That’s what disruption is. You don’t want that. That’s huge risk and massively costly. That is a terrible, terrible way to do business, as far as I’m concerned. But, when I talk about the way that innovation actually works; I very often talk about the two hundred and fifty year history of the smartphone. So, of course when you ask people what’s the most disruptive piece of technology in recent years they very often say the smartphone, that’s the most common answer I get from people. Okay? Well, two hundred and fifty years ago, it was before the steam engine was invented, and there was countries were at war with each other and they had their ships. And if you wanted bigger guns, you needed bigger ships, bigger ships needed bigger masts, and there’s the person at the top of the mast in the crow’s nest, he’d be looking out to see what’s happening around about. And further you are from the deck, and the guns are firing, and there’s wind, and there’s rain, then if they’re trying to shout down to the people in the deck, the people in the deck can’t hear them. So, they improvised, and they got some canvas from some damaged sails, and they put the canvas into tubes, and they strapped it to the mast, so there was a tube of canvas that went from the top of the mast to the bottom, a nice simple, easy thing to do. The person could shout into this tube, say “There’s a ship on the horizon!”, and they would be…the people at the bottom would hear them! Fantastic! So, that’s iteration one. What then happened from that is when a Scotsman, of course, invented the steam engine, invented the steamship, decided to build this technology into the vessel itself, so that the captain up with his oversized wheel on  the top of the ship was then able to just using the same technology shutting down a tube down to the engine room, so the people in the engine room would understand what he wanted. So, we’ve gone from one iteration to another iteration. It’s exactly the same technology at the moment. Now we go to the third iteration when these captains, these admirable admirals who were all quite wealthy, returned back home to the UK. I thought ,you know, that was quite a useful invention! I think I’ll have that put in my house.So, they put these speaking tubes into their house which meant that they were upstairs, the servants were downstairs. They could ring a little bell, it would ring done in the servants quarters, and they could shut down the tube, and ask for ask her more port, and Stilton, and cigars. And then the next iteration was when electricity came around. Actually, made it easier to do this because you used electricity instead of a tube. And it meant that you didn’t have to be directly underneath. It meant it could go to a different part of the house, and it still was very similar to the speaking tube because you have to go up to the wall to shout into a hole, and because you couldn’t put the microphone and the speaker in the same device, you had the separate thing to put up to your ear. But, you’re still, you’re standing beside the wall, shouting into a hole that then somebody in the other end can hear. Then that came off the wall and became like a candlestick, so that people could have it on the table so you don’t have to stand by the wall. And then you took that, and this device came together into one thing, the telephone handset that we think of from the 1970s, 1980s, you know, these lovely old telephone handset. Then in the 1980s we cut the curly cord, and it meant that people could walk around and they’d have a radio phone inside their house, and the, well, why stay within the house. We can have mobile phones, we move outside the house. And then now, as we get technology that becomes more and more miniaturized. We’re able to cram more and more things in, which meant there was more functionality. So the screen was able to grow at the same time to allow us this extra functionality, until now we have a slice of glass with a computer inside it and a phone, and a camera, and all of this amazing…

Ivan Minić: … and a television.

Dave Birss: Yeah, all of this stuff in this incredible device. Now compare that to the rolled up tube of canvas that I talked about at the beginning. Is there any similarity there? No, no, functionally, and visually there’s no similarity. These things are entirely different. Yet, at no time through that process was there anything that was more unfamiliar than familiar. So there was always more familiarity than unfamiliarity every stage of that process. That’s how proper iterative innovation works. You look at what Apple have done when they were late to the market with smartphones, but they come in at just the right time. Because smartphones have been around since 94 and they came in and when was it 2006 I think it was…

Ivan Minić: … six or seven.

Dave Birss: You look at the iPhone now, you look at the original iPhone, which I still got in the drawer in my desk.

Ivan Minić: Same here.

Dave Birss: Yep, and they look very similar. You can see that they are…

Ivan Minić: … And to be perfectly honest, even though twelve or thirteen years have passed, or something like that, that original device is still amazing.

Dave Birss: Yeah, it is! And it’s been little changes. I mean so much so that every single time Apple brings out another phone there’s always people that go “Ahh, they’ve hardly done anything. It’s just that… that’s good, that’s good innovation. You don’t want to be radically changing all the time. You want to be constantly improving it. You look at Nike Air…so that came around in ’84, I believe the first Nike Air, the Air Max ones. Now the first version of Nike Air actually came out in the late seventies, and it’s called the Tailwind. And the Tailwind had an air bubble in the heel, but you couldn’t see it which meant that you had to market it, you had to tell people there’s an air bubble in the heel…

Ivan Minić: …And they wouldn’t believe it because they can’t see it.

Dave Birss: Exactly! So it didn’t really sell very well as a shoot and sell very well in five six years later. They brought out the Air Max 1 and you could see the bubble. And I remember the shoe coming out and going to shoe shops and you look through the bubble and you squeeze it and it kind of told you what this was about just by looking at it. You can understand, you are walking on air. It was brilliant. If you look at then how that has developed over the years. There’s been an evolution that’s gone from this little bubble in the heel to covering most of the heel to then there was also a bubble in the front and then there was the whole of the heel was a bubble and then it just expanded until now I think the only way is to go upwards until her legs are surrounded in cushioned bubbles and then we’ll end up with just our face sticking out of a bubble. That’s the way it will be in 20 years, I’m sure. You can see that every single time there’s an iteration. There’s always more familiarity than unfamiliarity. And that’s the way to go, rather than trying to completely reinvent because Apple I don’t believe any of the things they’ve done they’ve completely reinvented.

Ivan Minić: But the first thing they did was something, in that sense, never seen before. It’s not the first time you see a cell phone with a big color screen, but you never had the chance to have an interaction with that kind of screen. Why am I saying this? Because I watched, maybe a few weeks ago when I was coming back from China on my second flight from Doha I had this entertainment system, and I watched all the movies so it did make sense to search for something like that, but there was a section with TED talks, and I have a really long love-hate, but mostly love, relationship with TED talk. And one of these talks, I can’t remember the woman’s name, but she was talking about how extraordinary situations and circumstances require extraordinary measures. And she was talking from point of being one of people and her background has nothing to do with the technical aspects of the whole thing, I think. She was one of the people who were invited back in the day when there was this big catastrophe in Chile for miners. Seventy of them were way below ground and from you know, realistic point of view and analytical point of view it was a no win situation. There’s nothing that could be done to you know, evade the inevitable catastrophe. Yet they managed to rescue them and they managed to rescue them through bringing so many different people with so many different ideas where their egos hd to be succumbed. Mostly, and in that situation, it’s a little bit easier than in others because it’s people’s lives so no one is looking to be egomaniac in that situation. Everyone’s key interest and priority is to get as many of these people alive and safe as possible ideally all of them. So she was talking about what kind of profiles were there and there were so many different people with so many different ideas. Some of them who were working the core business of drilling and mining and stuff, but many of them working on completely different kind of projects, and the interesting thing with that TED talk (and, perhaps, if you like what you’re hearing, audience, you can Google it, and I’ll find the link as well), is that management in these situations is not the usual kind of management. Yes. And management is also one of the key reasons why innovation doesn’t work in many cases because when you, in many situations in big corporations when you have someone who is different and has some ideas, after a while someone from above, comes and tells them to stop being so special and to do things a certain way…

Dave Birss: … It’s happened to me a couple of times.

Ivan Minić: … we’ve been doing for the past 30 years. I know, I know. How to… the thing with corporations, the thing with big systems is they are extremely slow when it comes to everything.Perhaps they optimized their key processes for their well-being as a company, but everything else, any kind of change, and it doesn’t have to be a change in the product, any kind of change, they are extremely slow about because it’s no one’s priority. In other ways, if you have a group of guys doing fairly same amount of work for the same salary under the same job title, you don’t want any of them standing out too much because it’s a problem. In that kind of organization it’s considered a problem. How can that be an opportunity instead of a threat?

Dave Birss: It’s completely about leadership. I think that leadership in organizations very often in recent years, it’s been finance people who are the ones who’ve made it to the tops of the companies. It used to be visionary people who run companies. But it’s very much, it’s finance people who are the top of the companies. And they measure things with metrics. And they want to make sure that this quarter this is our targets, this is what we want to hit. That’s all very… that’s all good. You need to have that to run a company, to you keep the company going, but what’ve ended up with is this belief that people are working. You take a unit of human, and you get them to do this task and this is the amount of productivity you will get out of them. That seems to be the belief that a lot of companies have rather than understanding that people are bundles of potential. And that if you try to work people really hard what we’re finding now is that not only are people getting burn out, not only have you got an absolute epidemic of mental health issues in the workplace created by the workplace. But what we’re doing is when you focus people on productivity, it’s all about doing, and doing is the opposite of thinking. They’re very different. You need you need to manage these things very differently. If you want ideas, you need to focus on the thinking part, and if you are completely focused on doing, as in telling people this is the way you do things around here giving them systems that doesn’t encourage or allow for them having thought, if you reward them, that’s all about how much productivity they’re having. Then that says to people we are only interested in you doing stuff. We’re not interested in your brain. And people then, they won’t go away and think about stuff. But if you want to differentiate yourself in business thinking is how you do it, not doing, because all you can do with doing is to try and make it slightly more effective all the time. To rationalize that to reduce that department, to automate this…

Ivan Minić: … you make it slightly cheaper.

Dave Birss: Yes. I’m with that. It’s a race to the bottom. It’s not a race to the top of the industries, a race to the bottom because the only thing that you can do from there is start to erode your profit margin, and there’s less and less special about your product.

Ivan Minić: And there will always be someone who can do that kind of work cheaper.

Dave Birss: Exactly, so, to me, I think we need to split thinking and doing up, and understand if you want ideas, then the focus and productivity is actually causing us a problem with that. And I am…the last agency that I was employed by one of the things I hated is that they had a metric to see how well utilized people were. And I was expected to be, I think ninety two percent utilized. So ninety two percent of the time I had to be doing billable work. Yet as a creative director, my job is about thinking which requires input which requires time to look out the window, walk around, talk to people. Yet, that’s not what it was about. I needed to just fill in timesheets to show that I was doing stuff, and a lot of that stuff is quite hard to put on timesheets. So, I actually ended up, it was ridiculous, at one point I said, can you tell me how well utilized I am, and they said yes, we’re really happy. You’re one hundred and twenty three percent utilized. Okay, so I’m over a hundred percent utilized. That is ridiculous, but they were really happy with that. Maybe I, maybe I’ve been filling out my timesheets wrong, I don’t know.  But, we didn’t get the culture thing in companies, and culture has also become a problem. And, of course, productivity is very often part of a culture that we believe you should be doing stuff. But culture..People have been talking about it for years as this important thing that you need to do. But, if you’ve got a culture that’s telling you this is what we want you to do, this is the kind of person who we want you to be, this is, this is the way we do things around here, this is what makes up brand X kind of person then what you’re saying to people is this is the mold we want you to fit in, and we don’t want you to think outside that mold, we don’t want you to be anyone different. We don’t want you to express any of your individuality, or uniqueness. The kind of culture that works for ideas is not to tell people what to do and who you want them to be, but instead to.. a culture that gives them the freedom and encouragement to do something different. A culture that says to people we want you to actually discover your own way of doing this, and we will celebrate that whether it works or not.

Ivan Minić: In many situations it’s not about doing things. It’s about solving problems, and usually it’s being said that this is the problem we want you to find the way to solve it, but in some situations it’s about this is the problem and this is the way we want you to solve it.

Dave Birss: Yes.

Ivan Minić: If you are giving them the way then anyone can do it then, you know, a software or hardware piece can do it as well. But what I think is important is you mentioned company culture, and in some companies, you know, innovation is part of that as well. Especially IT companies, and I’m also marketing and IT related. For the past maybe ten years. There is a big understanding that not only engineers should be part of the thinking process. Engineers are excellent because they have structured thinking, and they can, if there is a way of solving things, they can make it into a procedure that can provide you with the same quality of results every time which is for, you know, if it’s a business thing that’s quite important. But, again, if it needs to be done, if it’s something that hasn’t been done before, there is probably not a usual way of doing that. There is no usual way because there has no been a chance for it to become usual. There are many different ways things can be can be done, and there is this old quote from Bill Gates saying that if I have a complex problem, I would hire a lazy person to do it because they would find the easiest way to do this and that’s a in many situations, that’s a very interesting hypothesis which I think makes a lot of sense because when we are speaking about someone as being lazy, it means he is not doing, or she is not doing a bunch of repetitive tasks everyday, but they are doing certain things maybe their way. They are finding a different way or short cuts and stuff. And sometimes these things make a big difference and, you know, repetitive tasks are something that, in the next decade or two will be replaced by manual labor, will be replaced by robots, and technology because it’s cheaper, it doesn’t need to, you know, doesn’t need to sleep or relax, and it does the same thing every time one hundred percent. It just needs maintenance from time to time and that’s not really too often. But when we talk, I have situation to, maybe a couple of times, to talk to youngsters right before they’re deciding which college should they enroll to and which should be their primarily primary field of study, and work in the future. And in many cases, at least here in Serbia, these youngsters are not aware of the fact that many of the things that are thinking about, by the time they finish their school, will not exist, or at least they will not exist the same way they’re doing now. For example, if you are, I don’t know how someone can be, but if you’re into accounting, there’s an app for that even now, and in ten years that app will know more than any accountant you can find now. And in many other, you know for journalists, there will still be enough room for some amazing people doing some amazing stuff, but the general stuff even now most of these things are generated. They are not written.

Dave Birss: That’s right! And when I was editor at large for the Drum magazine it was one of the things that we were looking at. Not to replace, it was just, not to replace our journalists, but it was just a technology we were interested in because we were looking at trends in technology in the media industries. There were these, I guess, machine learning, AI kind of systems. I mean, I always struggle to use the term AI because I think it’s a bullshit term a lot of the time, but was systems that could take information like sports results. And it could write something that was you would read it, and you wouldn’t know it wasn’t written by a human, and they just brought the data…

Ivan Minić: … it all happens automatically.

Dave Birss: Yeah, so the machine takes dry data, and it turns it into something that’s digestible by human, by the human mind.I think that’s extraordinary!

Ivan Minić: And it’s fairly simple!

Dave Birss: It is! And we ended up working when we were looking at this technology. We then started talking to the Watson team at IBM and we did the world’s first magazine to be edited by an AI. So we got Watson to edit the magazine and Watson wrote some of the articles.

Ivan Minić: And they were good.

Dave Birss: Yeah. This to me was was pretty fascinating the fact that we could do that.

Ivan Minić: And it’s just the beginning.

Dave Birss: Yeah. So, I think if your job is to do with repetition, and I’m saying that… the one thing I’m saying here is that it’s not good to have a repetitive job, it is not good for your mind, but it also isn’t good for your future career because any job that is repetitious can be done better and cheaper by a computer at some point. Whether that’s a physical repetition, or where there’s mental repetition, we’re going to find that computers will replace those jobs, so I don’t want to be doing anything repetitive.

Ivan Minić: When we are talking about creativity, to come back to the beginning of our conversation, when we are talking about creativity there are many misconceptions. And in many cases people think it’s a talent. We talked about how organizations, how businesses can benefit from that, but let’s focus on the little guy.

A little guy who always believe that he didn’t have that God given talents, and he’s not, or she is not creative, and there is literally nothing they can do to you, you know, show some spark of creativity, or some good idea. In many cases, I find a very strong connection between creativity, entrepreneurship, problem solving as terms, because in all of these cases it requires you to alter the usual way of thinking to accomplish something. Yeah, and that’s tough. That stuff especially if you’ve been told your whole life that you just need to, you know, enter the school, get good grades, then enter the university, just learn what it says in these books, get good marks, and then start some job somewhere for a decent pay, and work there for, in case of Serbia, in Western countries it’s not the same, but here, basically you got your first job, and you spend there forty years and then you go to retirement. That’s not that’s never going to happen. And having an alternative, thinking about the alternative, requires you to change the way you’re thinking because usual way you get usual results. How can someone challenge themself and help themself to grow in that manner.

Dave Birss: It goes all the way back to as you’re saying in school there. You’re saying that in school that we have the expectation that we will step into a job and we will do that job for forty years, and that was always the expectation. If you think about that, that is absolutely horrendous stepping into job and doing that for forty years. That to me makes me shudder the thought doing the same thing for a lot time. Now what has happened is that school, it puts a wet blanket over curiosity. Curiosity is the important thing. It’s the one skill that we need to nurture from the very beginning in kids. Kids are naturally curious. That’s why you’ll find five year old boys looking under hedges, spotting dead birds under there, or whatever that deal

Ivan Minić: And ask so many questions.

Dave Birss: Yes! Curiosity is brilliant. Yet, stop asking those questions. Stop, stop! I mean, the parents are dampening the curiosity. The school is dampening the curiosity, cause it’s not saying let’s discover how to do this. It’s saying this is how you do this. This is how you solve this kind of equation. There’s not enough spirit of discovery and curiosity. We need to foster curiosity. But, the fortunate thing is that you can do that no matter what age you are. Curiosity is what we need. Because, the brain is a processor, it’s not a computer, but it’s a processor, and you’ve got input process happen. So, if you were to think of it as an analogy of a computer, if you imagined you had a Raspberry Pi that cost you like twenty euros or something like that for a Raspberry Pi computer. And then you had IBM’s newest supercomputer that they brought out last year, and you get some crappy data, real crappy data, you put it through an algorithm on both these computers, you get crappy results because crappy data equals crappy results. In fact, the term for it in computer programming is…

Ivan Minić: … you’ll just get them faster.

Dave Birss: Yeah, exactly! The computer programming term is “GIGO” (garbage in, garbage out). And then you’ve got… if you’ve got really good, powerful data put it through both of them. You’ll get good results out of both of them. You’ll just get slower out of one of them.Now, surely what you’re looking for there is results, not necessarily the speed if you’re wanting to get a great output. It’s the same with brands. If you’ve got the same information going into your brain as everyone else has gone into their brains, you will come out with the same kind of ideas they come out with. Because curiosity has been dampened in most people, most people are just getting the mass media mass-market information. They go into their workplace and they get the same information as everyone else in the workplace because of this strong culture they have. And everyone in the workplace has the same knowledge the same assumptions the same processes. So everyone comes up with the same kinds of ideas. And that’s not a value to anyone. So if you want to be able to come up with ideas, that no one else can come up with, and I promise you you can, it’s quite simple, you just spot things that no one else spots. If you are curious and you fill your mind with a breadth of information that breadth of information gives you more to draw on. So that when you’re trying to solve a problem or come up with ideas or anything? You can bring all of this stuff together because you may find that actually a documentary you saw on the mating dance of the some sea lion and in the Galapagos, actually has got something that you could learn from.

Ivan Minić: Of course.

Dave Birss: And that could help you in this way of structuring a spreadsheet. I don’t know but, input is what feeds output, and most people have very very narrow input.

So ,it’s very easy to get good at coming up with ideas. It’s just to fill your mind with the stuff that you don’t think other people spotted to get into the habit of looking for what other people haven’t spotted to when you see something that you really like ask yourself. Why do I like that? Write that down. Write down the different points, and this is what I’m about to do in a workshop tomorrow is give people input, and then they work out what we can learn from it. You take me points, and then when you need to come up with ideas, you go back to this list of things you’ve learned from good things, and you start using these points to help you come up with ideas, and it completely changes the way you think. So, it’s everything that happens outside of an idea generation session. It’s what affects what happens inside the idea generation session, and you can expect just brainstorming skills to be able to get you out of the fact that you’ve got nothing valuable in your brain.

Ivan Minić: We have a few more things we need to talk about, but one of the first things is that one of the key reasons why people and companies go safe when there is an opportunity to pick a different way is their gut feeling, and in many situations you have some “great leaders”, or great leaders saying that my gut feeling got us this far. In some situations that got feelings make in the end some amazing results, and amazing things, but in many situations those gut feelings just say, let’s play it safe, let’s not take a chance. Why does that happen? And what is the way of persuading yourself that you shouldn’t maybe do it that way?

Dave Birss: Brilliant! Yes. Let’s do a bit of neuroscience here. So we like to think that all of our thinking is done in the meatball on the top of our neck. We think that that’s where the thinking happen. But like all animals, we have a distributed nervous system. So, as a guitarist, I go to play a note. I’m not consciously going “Right, put your finger there on the fifth string on the seventh fret move it backwards and forwards in this rhythm to get the brothel.” I’m not thinking that. Do you know why? Because my arm is doing the thinking. I have muscle memory! My arm. My arm is thinking! That freaks me out, but we’ve got the second…

Ivan Minić: If you’re thinking, you are going to make a mistake.

Dave Birss: Exactly!

Ivan Minić: Like when you’re playing, you know, basketball, and if you make that shot ten out of ten times, if you missed it, you’ve probably thought too much.

Dave Birss: Yeah, so true! And the second brain that we have is not what the sort of thing that people think that men’s second brain is. Our second brain is our gut, our digestive tract, and it’s got more neurons than an entire hamster. So there’s more neurons in your gut than a hamster has in its entire body. It’s about a quarter of a cat’s brain you have in your gut. Now, the interesting thing about that is those neurons, ninety percent of them only fire in an upward direction? Why is that? Well, this part of your brain, your gut, your enteric nervous system is designed to respond to threat. Yet, a lot of people, in particularly in business, think that a gut reaction comes from all the past experience they have, all the past knowledge they have. My gut’s telling me this therefore my past experience is telling me this isn’t the right thing to do. My business wisdom that I built up is telling me this is not the right thing to do, and they are wrong. They’re absolutely one hundred percent wrong. When you feel something in your gut and you do genuinely feel it in your gut because the brain down here in your digestive system is designed to be releasing chemicals to do the… stop your digestive system when it’s fight or flight, all of that stuff. It only deals with threat. And what happens is when people react to this and they go “Oh, that makes me feel uncomfortable in my stomach. My gut’s reacting, they put their hand up and they say “No!”, and they think that they’ve done the right thing because of their gut and their expertise. It’s not their expertise, it’s their fear. That’s all it is.

And very often your fear can be activated, actually for a different reason than you think. Not because it’s the wrong thing, but because it’s the right thing. So if you were going to…if you’re wanting to do something it’s never been done before, if you’re looking for competitive advantage, you’re looking to stand out in the marketplace any idea that you get will make you feel uncomfortable. It will set off your gut, set of your threat reaction because it’s going to be hard to sell in to the decision-makers. It’s going to have elements of risk to it.

Ivan Minić: First of all it’s unknown.

Dave Birss: Yeah, all the unknowns! And the unknowns set this off. Now, that doesn’t mean that it’s wrong. It means that you found something where there are unknowns, there are those threats.

Ivan Minić: And the opportunities.

Dave Birss: Yeah, so what you have to do is not react to this and think that this is making a decision for you, is to interpret it. So what I do when I’m doing problem solving with companies to help them with these projects, if we’re looking for competitive advantage, or we’re looking for new ideas in one part of the business, is at that the very beginning before we start off the project,I sit down with the decision-makers and we together, we collectively create a list that we end up having to come up with a lot of points, and then narrow it down to the five or six most important points which are:

How are we going to judge the success of this at the end?

What will make this a successful outcome for this project?

And if you’re wanting to get competitive advantage then one of these points has to be that we are going to do something that no one else in the market is doing.

That has to be one of those points.

And then you’re going to have other things in there, there are ways you are going to judge it. And this becomes really useful because at the beginning what you’re doing is you are guessing it on focusing on the most important things you need to do in this project, and the discussions that I have very often end up changing the brief and the requirements. When they realize that we actually are probably asking for the wrong thing. So it’s great for focusing at the beginning. The second thing that it does is it keeps people focused throughout, so when they’re working on it they’re able to refer back at any time to see are we on track, are we not on track? Then when they come up with ideas they can go “Does that tick all of these off? If it doesn’t, is there anything we can do to adjust this idea to make it take tick these off better?”

And then when you present the stuff it becomes far easier to sell because you say “When we go together at the beginning this is how we agreed that we’re going to judge the ideas.” Now I’m going to show you the ideas, and I believe we have ticked off every single one of these. Let’s look at the ideas based on the filter of these criteria that we come up with at the beginning. Brilliant! You’ve done it, you’ve nailed. It is so much easier to sell, and it means that you’re actually going to get something which achieves what you are wanting to achieve at the beginning and it means that the judgment at the end is not relying on the threat response in your digestive system. And if this thing reacts then you can then rationally talk about why it’s reacting and whether it’s a good thing or not.

Ivan Minić: And are you trying to tell me that this model is what you suggest as a replacement for brainstorming session?

Dave Birss: No! There’s other things that I do for… I mean, brainstorms is… I hate them. They were created in the 1940s and about ten years after brainstorms were invented there was a study done, I think it was either Yale or Harvard, where they got some students, and I think it was twenty, twenty students they asked to come up with ideas using brainstorm techniques, and twenty they said look just individually come up for the same amount of time generate ideas. They found that the ones who worked individually came up with more ideas, came up with a more diverse range of ideas, and come up with more practical ideas when judged by team of experts. The ones who were in brainstorms they actually found that they’ve been narrowed down, they ended up coming up with crappy ideas, and you’ve got this race to the bottom.

Ivan Minić: They shaved off all the edges.

Dave Birss: Yes. All the spiky bits, all the interesting stuff. They remove all that until you’ve just got this. It’s like a… it’s like a warm beer at the end. It’s just horrible. So it’s… brainstorms have so many studies done into this. So, instead of using the term brainstorm, I recommend you use the abbreviation of BS. Because that is what they are, they are absolute nonsense. So, I’ve got exercises. I work, and I’m working with companies to help them come up with ideas. I’ve got number of exercises, and I will change the exercises depending on what we’re doing. There are all designs to get people looking at things from different directions to bring in multiple perspectives, and I use a structure to get us through this and I call it R.I.G.H.T. thinking which stands for research, insight, generate ideas, hone the ideas, which is like polishing them, making them better, test the ideas. And so all the way through that we should be looking for the unusual because when I said fill your mind with stuff that people don’t normally spot, that’s we need to be doing throughout this whole process. So research – we should be looking for the things that people don’t normally spot, rather than just Googling, and you know, and…

Ivan Minić: … Internet is a really nice place to fill your mind with stuff…

Dave Birss: … with the same stuff that everyone else has got

Ivan Minić:… and some weird stuff very few people see.

Dave Birss: Yes, yes, there is that. If you can find a YouTube video with less than three views on it…

Ivan Minić:… that’s a good start.

Dave Birss: So the research.. Trying to find the stuff, and particularly look for human insight, because a lot of the problems we’re solving involve humans, and humans are the glitchy parts of the machine. So look for the human inside. So it might be that you find when you look at this that the button keeps breaking, and actually the reason isn’t that it’s a bad design of button, it’s actually normal design of button. The fact isn’t maybe not the button itself, it’s the feedback system. So it’s not immediately telling people that the button has activated anything therefore people that hit it harder. So you find that most people would think that the button was the problem, but it’s not. Your research will let you understand…

Ivan Minić: The button is just the tell that there is a problem.

Dave Birss: Yeah. So it is like an exercise I often do, it’s a very old exercise. That’s one of the bosses of Toyota come up with in the 1950s which is just five why’s. You just ask why five times, it’s so powerful, it’s brilliant, and …

Ivan Minić: …and  frequency exercised by up to four or five year olds. They tend to ask “why” more times than you can give them answer to.

Dave Birss: I’m very often, when I’m consulting for companies, I say that you’re paying me to be the annoying child. I even offered one of my consulting clients that I would build them a muddle of me to sit in the chair and they come up and they press a button, and the first time they press the button it just says “why?”,and they press the button again, and it says “why?”, and you press the button again it says “why?”, and then after five times the button and it just says “now you know”. So, research is this important bit of gathering all the information that’s going to be valuable to you, and look for the stuff that people don’t spot. Then insight – t’s when you find an interesting observation from your research, insight is the interesting reason behind the interesting observation. So, as an example of that I very often say to people that if we were to find out that every Friday millennials have a twenty percent  higher chance of wearing odd socks, then it’s like, that’s  apiece of research, that’s a statistic. It’s interesting. It becomes something you can tell people in the pub. “Really? Did you know that twenty seven percent..”, but it’s not actually that helpful yet. Insight is the reason behind that, and then you find the reason behind it is that Thursday is the new Friday, it’s the new going out and drinking night, and what happens is they’re hungover on a Friday morning, and the alarm goes off and they just pick up whatever is on the floor, and put on their feet and they go. So, at this point, we’ve got something that’s helpful.

Ivan Minić: Method behind the madness.

Dave Birss: We’ve got reason behind the observation. And that helps us come up with ideas. The twenty seven percent statistic does not help us come up with ideas. But the insight does because now we know that if they’re out drinking on a Thursday night we could maybe create an app that would help him find interesting places to drink, we could give them recipes for lower alcohol drinks. We could maybe reward them so that the earlier they go home the cheaper their taxi is. Maybe on a Friday we could start an hour later because they’re going to be hungover, and we actually allow them that so we’re going to get better work out of them we just shift the workday back an hour. So there’s all sorts of ideas we can get when we’ve got an  insight. But the statistic itself doesn’t help, but the insight does generate ideas. There’s lots of different techniques we can use to do that. I prefer to get people thinking by themselves first. And then if you’ve got an idea generation session you get people to come along with ideas so they’re already started.

You don’t expect them to come up with an idea. Just give them the information, come up with idea because then you get first thoughts, first thoughts are obvious thoughts, obvious thoughts are low volume. So, get people to think about it first, then maybe get them coming together to help them build on those ideas. Then you need to learn how to judge those ideas at the end.

Ivan Minić: When you say judge you mean evaluate.

Dave Birss: Evaluate, yes, to select the best ones.And then you’ve got honing which is developing the idea, because what we get at the end of these sessions isn’t something completely, brilliantly thought through very often. It can very often be quite a broad idea…

Ivan Minić: … or a rough idea…

Dave Birss: …and then you develop it to make it as strong as it can be, to look at other ways of executing that potentially, to look to see if you can make it bigger, or make it smaller, make it more focused. Then you want to try it out, turn it into a prototype, to test it so that you’ve got results to validate your thinking, and to learn from, and you can also use those results to help you sell in to the decision-makers at the end because rather than just going “Hey, I’ve got this great idea.”, and the decision maker is going well what’s your proof…

Ivan Minić: … you have a proof of concept as well…

Dave Birss: …yeah, you’ve got…if you’re not able to say that someone else has done this, and this is results, you’ve at least got data to convince them that there was something in this. And, again, that something that I found helps with selling ideas so so much. I mean, if anything maybe the summary of this podcast is if you want to sell ideas the two things are make sure you’ve got tests that actually show you that, and make sure you’ve worked out your criteria at the very beginning so you can use them at the end.

Ivan Minić: Dave, thank you so much for what we talked about. What I wanted to say as well, I think I mentioned it in the beginning, but maybe I didn’t. Your book on ideas is also available in Serbian since maybe a few weeks…

Dave Birss: …which is great! Another book I can’t read!

Ivan Minić: You are special in that manner because you have been translated to many weird languages.

Dave Birss: I’ve got a book that’s only available in Macedonian. I’ve not even… when it came out in Macedonian first I decided I’m not going to translate that into English because I think it’s hilarious that I’ve got a book that I can’t read. So I’m trying to get it currently translated into Swedish, and into Arabic. I think that’d be great. I never ever bring it out in English.

Ivan Minić: Your book in Serbian has many of your thoughts, many of the studies, analysis, and ideas on what we’ve been talking about. What’s the future holding for you? What are your next endeavors you were going to accomplish?

Dave Birss: Well, I’m doing some films at the moment for YouTube that are experiments. So I am… I believe that we don’t have enough understanding and knowledge yet particular in the area of creativity. There’s been lots of stuff has been done, and lots of stuff done in laboratories, but I’m actually interested, one of the things that I’m really interested in is doing studies in the workplace to understand how you can get better ideas out of staff. But I’m doing some studies at the momen. So, our friend of the podcast, Relja, Relja Dereta, we met up this morning to actually do some filming for one of those experiments, because we did an experiment that was actually in the book. So, Relja’s in the book, his drawings are in the book alongside mine, because we did an experiment to see if we could teach our wrong hands to draw. So, I’m right-handed. So I did self portrait every day for a month with my left hand, and he did the same, except he’s left-handed and he did the portraits with his right hand. And we learned so much from that. So we’re really interested in experiments. I’ve got some LinkedIn courses coming out at the beginning of next year. So LinkedIn learning has asked me to do a couple of courses on creativity, and one of them is on how to manage people to get better ideas. So the beginning of the year, they will be released. I’m working on another book at the moment with my friend Soon Yu, we wrote another book called “Iconic Advantage” that came out last year.

Ivan Minić: Amazing book cover!

Dave Birss: Thank you! I’m consulting. So, I’m consulting for businesses. So, businesses that are interested in getting better ideas out of their staff, and solving problems, and getting competitive advantage, I’m working with them to help them achieve that, because all of that requires ideas, and they need to have the right conditions to get the right ideas. So that’s why I help them with.

Ivan Minić: Thank you.

Dave Birss: You’re welcome! Thank you! And thank you listener for getting this far through. If you’re listening this far through, and you didn’t switch off already, you are a pretty awesome person.

Ivan Minić: I have been weird and tough for me because this is the first time I’ve done this in English. In many other situations i’ve done some interviews in English, but then you are not the one in front of the camera, and your voice is not recording as well. I hope this was interesting…

Ivan Minić: Dave, thank you once again for this amazing talk, and looking forward for your workshop tomorrow.

Dave Birss: Thank you. Hvala.

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Dave Birss

Kao nekadašnji kreativni direktor brojnih vodećih reklamnih agencija u Velikoj Britaniji, Dave Birss danas posvećuje svoje vreme držanju radionica o kreativnosti organizacijama svih veličina- od startapa do vlada.

Razbija mitove o kreativnosti i inovacijama i pomaže klijentima u njihovim naporima da dođu do novih ideja i mogućnosti.  U portfolio svojih klijenata uvrstio je Google, BBC, ESI Media, Sky, The Drum i mnoge druge.

Putuje i drzi govore širom sveta, samo prošle godine napisao je 5 knjiga i pomogao u stvaranju 7, a u Srbiji gde je inače rado viđen gost, promoviše novo izdanje svoje knjige ‘’Kako da dođete do moćnih ideja’’ prevedene na srpski jezik. 

Pojačalo podcast je video i audio podcast. To znači da ga možete gledati na Youtube-u i Facebook-u, a slušati na SoundCloud-u, Apple i Google podcast.

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