Whenever I have described to people what it is that I do, I always expect them to ask me if I’ve seen a Nightline special about the shopping cart. It has happened time and time again. The Nightline Special these people are speaking of is this video about an organization in Silicon Valley called IDEO. This “Deep Dive” special showed people the world of systematic innovation in the context of redesigning a shopping cart. It wasn’t just starting with an idea but rather people saw that there is a deeper design process involved that started much earlier with problems and needs and involved a world of multiple ideas and prototypes. This video helped people to get it and it is clear now that it has stuck over the years. This IDEO process is still relevant and innovative today.
We facilitated a program called “Innovation Trip” where we brought a group of professionals to IDEO in Palo Alto. This was a highlight of the trip. As I talked to many people young and old about their dream career…working at IDEO seems to be the ultimate job for many innovators, inventors, and designers. If this video is still on the top of the mind there must be a good reason why. I am passionate about helping people to learn how to innovate. This starts with having a passionate interest in innovation…and this IDEO Nightline video lit the fire for many people.