Killer Innovations with Phil McKinney
An award-winning podcast and nationally syndicated radio show that looks at the innovations that are changing our lives and how their innovators used creativity and design to take their raw idea and create game-changing products or services. Phil McKinney, retired CTO of HP and the creator, and host of Killer Innovations has been credited with forming and leading multiple teams that FastCompany and BusinessWeek list as one of the “50 Most Innovative”. His recognition includes Vanity Fair naming him the “The Innovation Guru”, MSNBC and Fox Business calling him "The Gadget Guy" and the San Jose Mercury News dubbing him the "chief seer".

Some of the smartest, most creative people I know spend time doing nothing but thinking. For example Einstein was often criticized for his day dreaming. His form of day dreaming was to run his thought experiments.  Experiments carried out completely within his imagination.

Our society doesn't embrace or allow for day dreaming. Most organizations view this as being lazy and unproductive. Companies are focused are measuring things like hours worked, project deliverables and improved productivity.

Henry Ford and Day Dreaming

There is a famous Henry Ford story where an efficiency expert he had hired complained about a man who sat at his desk with his feet up. The expert's point was the obvious lack of productivity and output from this person. Ford said that that specific person came up with an idea that saved him millions by setting at his desk and just thinking. Ford added that he was paying that man to come up with the next great idea.

When I look at people whose ideas have changed the world, day dreaming combined with "reflective thinking" was a common trait.

Is it a coincidence or is there something to this?

[shareable cite="Fiona Kerr, University of Adelaide"]Daydreaming (with reflective thinking) allows the mind to wander. The outcome is consistently more productive when dealing with complex problems or coming up with creative solutions and ideas.[/shareable]

Day Dreaming Experiment

To either prove or disprove the hypothesis that day dreaming improves creativity, I'm proposing an experiment. This experiment was inspired by Zat Rana.

I commit (and invite you to do it yourself) to two hours per week for two months of focused day dreaming. What does that mean?

  • No computer
  • No mobile phone
  • No music
  • No talking

I will be using my Moleskine notebook to record my thoughts and ideas to see if I can notice an improvement in my personal creativity.

How To Get Started Day Dreaming?

One way to spark your day dreaming is to simply ask yourself a set of questions. Here are few to start with (again, inspired by Zat Rana)

  • Do I have the right set of priorities and do I apply them?
  • Is my work/life balance working?
  • What idea do I have that I am not pursuing?
  • What small step could I take that would have a MAJOR impact on the idea
  • Where do you want to be in one year with your idea with your life?

Be Part Of The Experiment

If you are part of The Community, I will setup a Slack channel for this experiment so that we can discuss, share and track the results. If you are not part of The Innovators Community, you should check it out. Its a community of innovators and creatives from around the world who share, challenge and grow as innovators.

I will also share my results in a future show.

[callout]Listen to this weeks show on how day dreaming can be the spark to boost your creativity.

Note: We apologize for the background clicks and pops in this weeks show. [/callout]

Show Links:

Direct download: Day_Dreaming_2_Hours_To_Boost_Your_Creativity_S13_Ep27.mp3
Category:Past Shows -- posted at: 1:02pm PDT