What makes Ideas stick?

What makes ideas stick and what makes them worth sharing? How can we make our Message stick? In the great book Made to Stick by Chip and Dan Heath we get an answer, they call it the stickiness Factor:

Ideas must be

  1. Simple
  2. Unexpected
  3. Concrete
  4. Credible
  5. Emotional
  6. Tell a Story
  1. Simple: Strip the Idea to the core! What is the most important thing you want people to take away from it? What is the main problem your idea seeks to solve? Keep it Simple
  2. Unexpected: Things that are boring don’t get shared so we have to grab attention by suprising people! How to do that?
    • Break a pattern people are used to
    • Pose a Question or a puzzle
    • Use a mystery story
    • Open a knowledge Gap, people get curios when they feel that they don’t understand something
  3. Concrete: Your Idea should be grasped and remembered! Be clear in your message.
  4. Credible: Make sure that your idea is believable! Some ways to do that:
    • Borrow someones credibility
    • Create stories with real people
    • No lies
    • Details matter
    • Give them something they can test themselves
  5. Emotional: People love drama so provide them with it. What emotions do I want to invoke in people?
  6. Story: Empower people to use an idea through narratives! Tell a story, the more hocks it has the more it will stick. Make sure to tell a compelling story.

These are the six factors that give your idea the biggest chance to get shared by other people.

Buy the book?

Related Blog Posts:

How to Fascinate?

Habits of a Innovator

What are the most important habits that helped the most successful inventors in history to get their insights?

In the book Innovators DNA the authors give the three key habits that can help everybody to have creative ideas. It all starts with the courage to question status quo! You can’t innovate unless you question the rule others made.

The main habits are:

  1. Questioning: Every innovation starts with a question. So great innovators make it a habit to question rules. The questions should outnumber the answers! Make it a habit to ask “Why?” frequently.
  2. Observing: Successful Innovators watch their surroundings and make notes. Make it a habit to watch and observer your surroundings, be it customers, products, technologies etc.
  3. Networking: Great Innovators have a diverse network of people for very different backgrounds, this helps with getting insights from very different perspectives.
  4. Experimenting: Always try to test your ideas and make diverse experiences. Try new things, expose yourself to things you never done before. Make it a habit to test your ideas in the real world in some way.

 

You can buy the book I got this from here.

Creativity by Mihaly Csikszentmihaly, Book Notes

Here are my notes:

Without access to a domain, and without the support of a field, a person has no chance of recognition.
So the first step toward a more creative life is the cultivation of curiosity and interest, that is, the allocation of attention to things for their own sake.
Creative individuals are childlike in that their curiosity remains fresh even at ninety years of age; they delight in the strange and the unknown. And because there is no end to the unknown, their delight also is endless
Try to be surprised by something every day. It could be something you see, hear, or read about
Be open to what the world is telling you. Life is nothing more than a stream of experiences—the more widely and deeply you swim in it, the richer your life will be.
Try to surprise at least one person every day . Instead of being your predictable self, say something unexpected, express an opinion that you have not dared to reveal, ask a question you wouldn’t ordinarily ask. Or break the routine of your activities:
Write down each day what surprised you and how you surprised others to record each evening the most surprising event that happened that day and your most surprising action.
When something strikes a spark of interest, follow it .
Wake up in the morning with a specific goal to look forward to . Creative individuals don’t have to be dragged out of bed; they are eager to start the day discover at least one thing every day that is worth waking up for. Choose a particular task that, compared to the rest of the day, should be relatively interesting and exciting
On FLow:
If you do anything well, it becomes enjoyable
To keep enjoying something, you need to increase its complexity
Nor can you enjoy the same activity over and over, unless you discover new challenges, new opportunities in it. Otherwise it becomes boring
After creative energy is awakened, it is necessary to protect it. We must erect barriers against distractions, dig channels so that energy can flow more freely, find ways to escape outside temptations and interruptions.
What can you do to build up habits that will make it possible to control attention
  • Take charge of your schedule
  • Make time for reflection and relaxation. These are times when you should not expect any task to be done, any decision to be reached. You should just indulge in the luxury of reflection for its own sake. Combine these periods of reflection with some other task that requires a certain amount of attention, but not all of it. Preferably this should involve some physical or kinesthetic component. Creative individuals usually sleep longer and claim that if they cut down on sleeptime the originality of their ideas suffers
  • Find out what you like and what you hate about life. Creative people always know the reason for what they are doing, and they are very sensitive to pain, to boredom, to joy, to interest, and to other emotion.
    1. The first thing is to keep a careful record of what you did each day and how you felt about it.
    2. Start doing more of what you love, less of what you hate.
    3. Develop what you lack .
The point here is that everyone can strengthen the missing end of the polarity. When an extrovert learns to experience the world like an introvert, or vice versa, it is as if he or she discovered a whole missing dimension to the world that creative persons are able to integrate is being open and receptive on the one hand, and focused and hard-driving on the other
  • Aim for complexity
To do so we need to explore and strengthen those traits that are now lacking, to learn to shift from openness to discipline, within a context of curiosity and awe for the miracle of life.
They question the obvious—not out of contrariness but because they see the shortcomings of accepted explanations before the rest
Look at problems from as many viewpoints as possible .
How you define a problem usually carries with it an explanation of what caused it
A good way to learn problem finding in everyday life is to stop yourself when you sense you have a problem and give it the best shot at a formulation.
This happened because the boss dislikes me.” As soon as you do this, reverse the formulation : “It happened because I dislike the boss.”
Nevertheless, it is extremely important to identify the nature of the problem, because what you will do next depends on it. By naming the problem and attributing a cause to it you will shape not only the past but, more important, the future.
Figure out the implications of the problem . Once you have created a formulation, you can begin to entertain possible solutions.
Implement the solution . Solving problems creatively involves continuous experimentation and revision learn from the emerging work;
Produce as many ideas as possible
First, come up with as many options as you can think of
Have as many different ideas as possible . Quantity is important, but try to avoid redundancy.
Try to produce unlikely ideas .

Ignore Everybody by Hugh MacLeod Notes

The more original your idea is, the less good advice other people will be able to give you.

GOOD IDEAS ALTER THE POWER BALANCE IN RELATIONSHIPS. THAT IS WHY GOOD IDEAS ARE ALWAYS INITIALLY. People dont want you to change.

Your idea has not to be huge but it has to be yours.

Time, effort and stamina seperates successful from failure.

Important:
“And then as soon as they get a foothold inside the inner circle, you soon realize they never really understood your idea in the first place, they just want to be on the winning team. And the weirdest part is, they don’t seem to mind sabotaging your original idea that got them interested in the first place, in order to maintain their newfound social status.”

Often Employers want 110% from you but are not willing to give anything in return. Fuck them!

The artist (everyone) is much more creative with very few tools then with many.

Dont try to stand out of crowds, avoid them completely.

Never compare your inside with some ones elses outside.

There are no shortcuts dont try to find any.

The people that trust you pay your bills in hard time no one else.

The best way to get approval is not to need it.

Blog to get discoverd/ gain advantage.

If you are successful, it’ll never come from the direction you predicted. Same is true if you fail

“Work hard. Keep at it. Live simply and quietly. Remain humble. Stay positive. Create your own luck. Be nice. Be polite.”

How to get new ideas?

In his short book “A Technique for Producing Ideas” James Webb basically provides us with a step by step guide to the next groundbreaking idea. Here they are:

  1. Gather raw materials for your mind! There are two kinds of materials worth gathering:
    1.   First: Material specific to the problem or field! You do that by interacting and talking to people in the field (but not just the higher ups)  as well as reading books on those topics or attending seminars.
    2. Second: General Knowledge, which you gather through out your life, this obviously never ends.
  2. Now write down on paper all the facts about the industries/ areas you are interested in. Then start trying to make connections between them where do you find possibilities  for synergies or processes that would make a process more efficent. Basiclly make connections between the different fields. This is the hardest part about the whole process take time at least 4 hours.
  3. The third point might be the easiest but it is crucial for the production of the idea, here is what you do: Drop the project completely and do something that stimulates your senses like going for a walk for instance, just get the project out of your conscious.
  4. At some point in the the following days of weeks a idea oder many of them will appear and your job is to record them  by writting them down and then immediately write down one little step towards testing them. But dont get discouraged if the idea does not appear groundbreaking at first. This exercise lets your sub-conscious mind do the work without you doing much.
  5. The last step is to test the idea start doing some experiments they dont have to be big. James calls it taking your little new born idea into the world. You need to seek feedback and criticsm to pivot your idea till it fits the marktet conditions. BUT dont get discouraged if you get a lot of negative feedback some of it might just be rejection of the new or unknown. Stay with it but pivot if needed.

 

I highly recomend picking up James Webb`s book its short but knowledge packed and makes anymore books on this topic basically obsolete.