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Breakthrough Thinking: The Seven Principles of Creative Problem Solving Paperback – August 31, 1998
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About the Author
Gerald Nadler, Ph.D., president of the Center for Breakthrough Thinking and chair emeritus of engineering management at the University of Southern California, is a consultant to some of North America's foremost corporations and government organizations.
Shozo Hibino, Ph.D., professor of planning and design at the Chukyo University, Japan, is vice president of the Center for Breakthrough Thinking and vice president of the Japan Planology Society.
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Top customer reviews
The book, however, is cumbersome and a bit philosophically pretentious in style, and the authors could have used the aid of a "breakthrough thought" concerning a ghostwriter.
I still feel that the overall tenor makes this a worthy read, and it should grace the shelf next to Covey, Collins, et al.
Readers will find that many of the individual ideas, concepts, considerations and perspectives are familiar. However, as Proust stated, the real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. Professors Nadler and Hibino show that you, and any group that you are part of, can significantly increase your chances of achieving breakthroughs if you adopt a certain approach to solving problems and making decisions. It is a purpose-directed approach. The focus is on the solution, not the problem.
They proceed to outline this approach in some detail. It includes a holistic set of steps to guide your use of the seven principles. They also describe a number of optional tools. When adapted to your own style and circumstances, and used in context, these tools really do maximise your chances of achieving breakthroughs e.g.
· `Exploration and expansion of purposes' enables you to creatively find the right problem to work on
· `Solution after next' helps to unfetter the team's creativity, to rise above current limitations, wrong assumptions and misconceptions - whether conscious or subconscious - and to ensure that today's solution is future-oriented and innovative
· `System matrix' facilitates a comprehensive consideration of all aspects of a solution thus maximising the chances of successful implementation
The thinking skills outlined in this book and ensuing practice can serve you well for the rest of your life. These skills are so fundamental, they can be beneficially applied in countless ways and in countless situations - both business and personal.
I first read this book six months ago and have no hesitation in recommending it.
Regardless, if you haven't used these principles before then it is likely to be something of a breakthrough. The authors present a remarkably well planned overview of the steps needed to come to creative solutions to problems.
Many readers are likely to find hints of De Bono, Senge and even some NLP in the reading. That shouldn't detract from the book though - it brings some rather disparate structures together to achieve an extremely beneficial approach to thinking and problem solving.
4 stars because it could have been edited down by 50 pages without detracting from the message.
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