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Chapter from: "The Innovator's DNA: Mastering the Five Skills of Disruptive Innovators"
Published by: Harvard Business Publishing
Published in: 2011

Abstract

When it comes to disruptive innovation, you don't have to start from scratch to create something new. Asking questions and fusing knowledge across disciplines and industries are the keys to improving your aptitude for association, a cognitive skill that lies at the core of innovation. In this chapter, authors Jeff Dyer, Hal Gregersen, and Clayton Christensen teach you how to strengthen your capacity for associating by describing how companies such as Oracle and Starbucks and devices such as the BlackBerry are in fact the products of association. ‘Defocusing,’ ‘Lego thinking,’ and ‘curiosity boxes’ are just some of the practical strategies and activities designed to help you develop the associating skills that could lead to your own breakthrough innovation. This chapter was originally published as Chapter 2 of ‘The Innovator's DNA: Mastering the Five Skills of Disruptive Innovators.’ This chapter is excerpted from ‘The Innovator's DNA: Mastering the Five Skills of Disruptive Innovators'.

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Abstract

When it comes to disruptive innovation, you don't have to start from scratch to create something new. Asking questions and fusing knowledge across disciplines and industries are the keys to improving your aptitude for association, a cognitive skill that lies at the core of innovation. In this chapter, authors Jeff Dyer, Hal Gregersen, and Clayton Christensen teach you how to strengthen your capacity for associating by describing how companies such as Oracle and Starbucks and devices such as the BlackBerry are in fact the products of association. ‘Defocusing,’ ‘Lego thinking,’ and ‘curiosity boxes’ are just some of the practical strategies and activities designed to help you develop the associating skills that could lead to your own breakthrough innovation. This chapter was originally published as Chapter 2 of ‘The Innovator's DNA: Mastering the Five Skills of Disruptive Innovators.’ This chapter is excerpted from ‘The Innovator's DNA: Mastering the Five Skills of Disruptive Innovators'.

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