VadiK teachings Vadim Kotelnikov

Lateral Thinking

Look wider to find a better solution

Vadim Kotelnikov, founder of 1000ventures - personal logo VadiK

Inventor Business e-Coach

Author Innoball

Founder Innompic Games icon



Lateral thinking is about restructuring questions or problems in order to find
better solutions.

It is concerned with challenging assumptions and generation of new ideas.

  Lateral Thinking DOs and DON'Ts, Vadim Kotelnikov






Lateral Thinking is:


Vadim Kotelnikov advice quotes

Looking deeper for a solution is intelligence; looking wider is creativity; looking higher is enlightenment.

Vadim Kotelnikov

Vadim Kotelnikov, founder of 1000ventures - personal logo    Business e-Coach    Innompic Games icon




Edward de Bono creativity advices quotes

Lateral thinking is concerned with breaking out of the concept prisons of old ideas.

Edward de Bono



Edward de Bono creativity advices quotes

You cannot look in a new direction by looking harder in the same direction.

Edward de Bono


Tagore quotes

The mind sharp, but not broad, sticks at every point but does not move.




Example Problem Solving: American vs. Russian Approach







 I HAVE a DIFFERENCE TO MAKE song lyrics every day create a lot Vadim Kotelnikov Innompic anthem


Lateral Thinking vs. Vertical Thinking

Lateral thinking is not a substitute for vertical thinking. Both are required they are complementary: lateral thinking is generative, vertical thinking is selective... More




Lateral Thinking Tricks for Generating New Ideas

  • Pick a random unrelated word (example: window + flying)

  • Suggest the outrageous (example: no one drives cars anymore)

  • Imagine or ask people to do the opposite (example: students teach, teachers take notes; or customers sell, sellers evaluate the product they are offered)



The Power of Cross-Functional Excellence

If you build broad cross-functional expertise, no idea will be wasted!

Systemic Innovation: 7 Areas

IDEO's 6 Innovation Practice Tips

Your mind can accept only those ideas that have a frame of reference with your existing knowledge. It rejects everything else. If your knowledge is functionally focused, you'll be open to new ideas related to your functional expertise only and will miss all other learning and innovation opportunities.

If you develop a broad cross-functional expertise, no new idea will be wasted. It will immediately connect with the existing knowledge and will inspire  you, energize you, and encourage your entrepreneurial creativity. The broader your net, the more fish you catch... More




Ask Searching Questions

Don't ask one or two questions and then rush straight towards a solution. With an incomplete understanding of the problem it is very easy to jump to wrong conclusions.

Ask open-ended questions that elicit a wide rage of answers:

'Why' questions  to discover the roots of the problem

'How' questions to discover different routes to significant improvement  >>>





Exercise:  Practicing Lateral Thinking

Source: Effective Innovation: How to Stay Ahead of the Competition, John Adair

The Bicycles and the Fly

Two boys on bicycles, 20 miles apart, began racing straight towards each other. The instant they started, a fly on the handlebar of one bicycle started flying straight towards the other cyclist. As soon as it reached the other bicycle, it turned and started back. The fly flew back and forth in this way, from handlebar to handlebar, until the bicycles met.

If each bicycle had a constant speed of 10 miles and hour, and the fly flew at a constant speed of 15 miles an hour, how far did the fly flew?   >>> See the answer



Case Studies Encouragement of Lateral Thinking at GE Work-Out



Akio Morita advice quotes Sony

I see true innovation to be made up of three creativities: creativity in technology, in product planning, and in marketing.

Akio Morita





1. Lateral Thinking, Edward de Bono     2. 101 Ways To Generate Great Ideas, T. R.V. Foster     3. The GE Work-Out, D. Ulrich, S. Kerr, R. Ashkenas     4. The Leader's Guide To Lateral Thinking Skills, P. Sloane