“Creative People Must Be Stopped is among the best books ever written about human imagination in the workplace. David Owens is a master innovator, having practiced his craft as a product designer, researcher, teacher, creativity coach, and executive. The breadth and depth of his experience fills every page of this little gem, which is chock full of hundreds of big and little steps that you can take right now to do more creative work and to lead more innovative teams and organizations.”
—Robert Sutton, Stanford Professor
Author of the New York Times bestseller Good Boss, Bad Boss
“This is no rarefied academic treatment on innovation as an abstract ideal, but a nuts and bolts handbook to dissecting our thought patterns about innovation. Owens dispels the myth that innovation is a binary trait that either exists or does not in a given product, process or business model. Creative People Must be Stopped addresses the myriad ways that novel ideas can fail in the marketplace. Working through a combination of thought experiments and real world examples, the book demonstrates how failures in understanding the context for innovation can prove every bit as deadly to progress as failures of imagination.”
—Mark Rowan, President
Griffin Technology Inc.
“Dave Owens has delivered the survival guide every would-be innovation team requires before entering the fracas battle of bringing ideas to life. Read ‘6 Ways We Kill Innovation’ if you are serious about making stuff and making stuff happen in this dangerous world for good ideas and the creative people who love them.”
—Peter Durand, Alphachimp Studio
Leading expert in graphic facilitation
From the Inside Flap
"Why do so many organizations continue to kill good ideas and to fail in their innovation attempts despite this wealth of research and advice?"—From the Introduction
While most organizations give lip service to promoting innovation and creative ideas, they all too often sabotage "outside-the-box" thinking among the rank and file. In this book, David Owens has identified the six dominant types of constraints (individual, group, organizational, industry-wide, societal, and technological) that can keep creative new ideas from being formulated, developed into marketable products and services, or adopted by the intended users. Creative People Must Be Stopped organizes these innovation killers into a conceptual framework that demystifies what innovationis, how it happens, and how we stop it without even trying. This proven framework has been usedto diagnose the primary causesof innovation failure within hundreds of organizations that have gone onto develop strategies that foster innovation rather than stopping it in its tracks.
Filled with illustrative examples from real-world organizations, the book explores each type of constraint in detail and shows how it operates and why. This analysis is followed by a discussion of ways that particular constraints can be overcome. Every chapter concludes with a "Constraints Diagnostic Survey." These asessments are based on Owens's research and consulting work, and they provide a pointer to the most urgent and potentially limiting constraints an organization may be facing. In addition, Creative People Must Be Stopped contains an exercise tool designed to help move leaders toward action to overcome the constraints that have been identified. Owens also explores the big-picture issues that can arise when spearheading an innovation team and discusses the steps needed to help organizations become more strategic about innovation.
Creative People Must Be Stopped gives leaders the tools they need to foster an atmosphere of creativity and innovation.