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Brainsteering: The Better Approach to Breakthrough Ideas [NOOK Book]

Overview

Change the way you think about new ideas by steering your creativity in new and more productive directions.

Ideas. Whether the goal is to create a billion-dollar business, fix a broken process, reduce expenses, or simply find the perfect gift for that special someone, we all need a steady stream of breakthrough ideas?and we've all learned from experience that traditional brainstorming doesn't generate them.

Former McKinsey consultants Kevin ...

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Brainsteering: The Better Approach to Breakthrough Ideas

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Overview

Change the way you think about new ideas by steering your creativity in new and more productive directions.

Ideas. Whether the goal is to create a billion-dollar business, fix a broken process, reduce expenses, or simply find the perfect gift for that special someone, we all need a steady stream of breakthrough ideas—and we've all learned from experience that traditional brainstorming doesn't generate them.

Former McKinsey consultants Kevin P. Coyne and Shawn T. Coyne have spent more than a decade developing a better approach—Brainsteering—that takes brainstorming and other outdated ideation techniques and "steers" them in a more productive direction by better reflecting the way human beings actually think and work in creative problem-solving situations. By introducing just the right amount of structure into the process, and asking just the right questions, Brainsteering has helped Fortune 500 companies, small not-for-profits, and individuals alike generate ideas they previously could never have imagined.

Peppered with thought-provoking and entertaining examples drawn from the workplace and popular culture, Brainsteering can help anyone develop breakthrough ideas, whether working alone on a one-time problem or turning an entire organization into an ongoing "idea factory." And getting started is easy: simply ask the right questions, and good ideas will follow.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Tired of interminable brainstorming sessions dominated by a few bloviating blowhards--and rarely resulting in a usable idea? Good news: it's not only frustrating, it's been proven to be ineffective. While we all need a regular influx of breakthrough ideas, there's got to be a better way of sparking that creativity--and the brothers Coyne present a cogent way of doing it. They introduce readers to techniques for asking the right questions and sparking more powerful ideas. The concept underlying "brainsteering" is to encourage users to focus, to look into an idea deeply rather than ricocheting around, brainstorming-style. The Coynes present a number of real and proposed business cases, including successes like Forever Stamps and Jiffy Lube. Their logical thinking exercises will help readers to maximize their ideation skills, both by systematically exploring every possible nook and cranny of an issue to find new ideas, and by systematically evaluating and honing the results. (Mar.)
Kirkus Reviews

Why think outside the box? Write business consultants Coyne and Coyne, "the key is to find just the right box in which to think."

Readers may not have known that a famed Broadway producer, responsible for such hits asThe Lion King andBeauty and the Beast, was also the father of the corn maze, an idea whose time, it seems, had come when he hit on it back in the '90s. Corn mazes are now a big draw in some parts of the country, though the authors must be using faulty stats to set the number of visitors at twice that of the Grand Canyon. Why couldn't we think of that contribution to American civilization? We can, write the authors—it's mostly a matter of learning how to ask lots of questions that might generate the desired answer, which presumably is to hit it rich, in the manner of the "Z-1-4" ("zero to $1 billion within 4 years") businesses they profile here. Enter "Brainsteering," a gimmicky but, at least on the face, effective method for "consistently generating breakthrough ideas." It would steal the authors' thunder to describe this method too closely, but let's take, for instance, their thoroughly useful series of questions meant to help pick out a welcome gift for the person who may have everything: "What was their favorite toy, hobby, or activity during the period of their life on which they look back most fondly?" "What event or accomplishment in their life are they most proud of"? The authors pepper their narrative with such idea-sparkers, with an appendix that is worth the cover price, and introduce acronym-tagged concepts that seem as if they ought to bear fruit, as with the notion of a "mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive" system of investigation.

The occasional distractions of pop-business cheerleading notwithstanding, if the book evokes a few creative ideas, it will have done good service.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062042255
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/1/2011
  • Sold by: HARPERCOLLINS
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 256
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Kevin P. Coyne is a senior teaching professor at the Goizueta Business School at Emory University and a former senior partner and leader of the worldwide strategy practice at McKinsey & Company.

Shawn T. Coyne is a management consultant with twenty-five years of experience in strategy, marketing, and organizational leadership at Procter & Gamble, McKinsey & Company, and other leading firms.

Kevin and Shawn are the managing directors of The Coyne Partnership, a boutique consulting firm serving senior executives and boards of directors in both the private and public sectors. Their articles have appeared in the Harvard Business Review, McKinsey Quarterly, Sloan Management Review, and on BusinessWeek.com, and they have been featured throughout the media, including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, BusinessWeek, CNBC, NPR, and Fox Business News.

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 25, 2011

    Must Read!!

    In my fifteen year career in marketing, I have sat through more than my fair share of unproductive "brainstorming" sessions. This book provides a practical, productive approach to creating breakthrough ideas. After several years working in new product marketing and strategic planning for a Fortune 500 consumer goods firm, I now work as Director of Development for a large arts organization. I believe the approach described in this book can be successfully implemented regardless of industry with positive results. I have already begun using some of the techniques to uncover new sources of funding for my organization. Further, while some of these books can be painfully boring and predictable to read, the many interesting examples highlighted make it a lively read!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 25, 2011

    A Must Read!

    This book has been a phenomenal asset to me. I'm able to come up with much better ideas and solutions than before, and in less time! Their approach is effective, time-efficient, and applicable in a multitude of situations. It answers the question "How'd they come up with that?" and provides tons of examples (from CNN to Cirque du Soleil to Corn Mazes). It's also an enjoyable read and the material is easy to digest. My bookshelf is basically divided into two sections- books that I like to read and books that I feel like I should read, and this book is one of few that falls into both categories.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 26, 2011

    Great How-To Guide For Hatching New Ideas

    This book does a great job of explaining why most traditional approaches to hatching new ideas -- especially old fashioned group brainstorming -- fail, and how to get it right. The authors prove their points with over a hundred examples, citing everything from scholarly research studies to case studies of billion-dollar companies to their own experience as consultants (some of their "war stories" were so funny I laughed out loud). The best thing is that they show you how to come up with great ideas whether you're working by yourself or with other people, and whether you're trying to launch a new business or just buy a great Christmas present for your wife. As an entrepreneur, I really liked the last section about how to create your own billion dollar idea.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted May 11, 2011

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    Posted March 19, 2011

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