Creative Blindness (And How To Cure It) | Dave Trott

Summary of: Creative Blindness (And How To Cure It): Real-life stories of remarkable creative vision
By: Dave Trott


Prepare yourself to explore a plethora of real-life stories about the power of creativity in ‘Creative Blindness (And How To Cure It)’ by Dave Trott. This book summary unveils the remarkable creative visions of individuals from diverse backgrounds, demonstrating that anyone can nurture their creative muscle to achieve remarkable results. From unconventional war strategies to ingenious marketing techniques, the examples shared will spark your imagination and cultivate your own corkscrew thinking. You’ll learn how creativity can give you an unbeatable advantage, the gist of grasping human motivation, and the significance of using the right language to reach your audience.

Unconventional Thinking

The ability to think creatively is not limited to artists or professionals in creative fields. Winston Churchill coined the term “corkscrew thinkers” to describe individuals who can think unconventionally. Unconventional thinking was critical in aiding the United Kingdom in winning World War II against stronger opponents. Unconventional thinking is a skill that can be developed through practice, training, and the ability to spot creativity everywhere. In short, understanding human psychology and motivation, coupled with an unconventional approach, can lead to success in any field. This is demonstrated through various examples, from a cable TV station’s successful trickery to target criminals, to a Girl Scout’s clever marketing strategy outside a marijuana dispensary. Finally, the story of Steve Jobs and the creation of the iPhone proves how unconventional thinking can lead to market dominance and revolutionize entire industries.

Creative Thinking that Wins Wars

During the Iraq War, the US army faced a challenge in identifying the most wanted targets to remove from the regime. A smart solution came in the form of a deck of cards featuring images of the top 52 names on the list. The cards were a huge hit, and soldiers enjoyed playing with them. The initiative’s success was reflected in the fact that only six missing people were still on the list by the end of the operation. This exemplifies the importance of using creative thinking to solve problems. This has been evident throughout history, from Thomas Newcomen, the steam engine inventor, to William Golding, who reaped great success by merely changing the title of his novel to Lord of the Flies. The key to success is to speak the audience’s language and think out of the box.

Action through Attention

The most effective way to influence people and get them to take action is by capturing their attention. This is exemplified through stories such as the introduction of the first escalator, where people’s fear was only alleviated after seeing a one-legged man ride it without harm. Similarly, a cyclist in Bury garnered attention from town council members by spray-painting phallic symbols around potholes, resulting in a quick resolution to a persistent problem. This idea is also illustrated by Colonel Sanders, who attracted customers to his gas station by selling homemade food, ultimately leading to the creation of KFC. The key takeaway is that the best advertising doesn’t tell people what to do, but rather shows them. To affect change, one must first grab people’s attention and then deliver a message that moves them to action.

Targeting the Right Group

In “The Art of Creative Thinking,” the author explores the concept of triage thinking and explains how it applies not only to medical situations but also to advertising. By dividing consumers into three groups, advertisers can focus their efforts and budget on the group that might be swayed by advertising, thus making their marketing efforts more efficient. The McDonald’s brothers unknowingly applied the Pareto Principle by streamlining their menu to just the top-selling items, which resulted in sales doubling and eventually giving birth to the fast food business model. Additionally, targeting the right group can also be applied to combating illegal fly posters. A neighboring town was able to effectively discourage posters by covering them with a bright orange sticker that read, “Cancelled,” making passersby interpret the poster as cancelled event or sale, instead of attracting customers. The Town eventually cleared itself of the nuisance. The key takeaway is to focus resources where it will make a difference and not waste it where it can’t, applying simple triage from a creative perspective.

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