Michael Michalko Quotes
“Creativity is paradoxical. To create, a person must have knowledge but forget the knowledge, must see unexpected connections in things but not have a mental disorder, must work hard but spend time doing nothing as information incubates, must create many ideas yet most of them are useless, must look at the same thing as everyone else, yet see something different, must desire success but embrace failure, must be persistent but not stubborn, and must listen to experts but know how to disregard them."
[Twelve Things You Were Not Taught in School About Creative Thinking (The Creativity Post, December 6, 2011)]”
“Creators are joyful and positive. Creators look at “what is” and “what can be” instead of “what is not.” Instead of excluding possibilities, creators include all possibilities, both real and imagined. They choose to interpret their own world and do not rely upon the interpretations of others. And most importantly, creators are creative because they believe they are creative.”
“Thomas Edison held 1,093 patents. He was a great believer in exercising his mind and the minds of his workers and felt that without a quota he probably wouldn't have achieved very much. His personal invention quota was a minor invention every ten days and a major invention every six months. To Edison, an idea quota was the difference between eating beefsteak or a plateful of Black Beauty stew.”
“The CEO of a major publishing house was concerned about the lack of creativity among his editorial and marketing staffs. He hired a group of high-priced psychologists to find out what differentiated the creative employees from the others. After studying the staff for one year, the psychologists discovered only one difference between the two groups: The creative people believed they were creative and the less creative people believed they were not.”
“Record all the things you like about yourself—your positive qualities, characteristics, and traits. Include the successes you have had in every area of your life: work, home, school, and so on. Keep adding to this list as you think of more things and as you accomplish more. Acknowledging yourself, your abilities, and your own unique qualities will encourage you to get moving.”
“The person who believes he is a subject is frank, open-minded, sincerely going ahead, facing the situation freely, and looking for ways to make things work and get things done. The person who believes she is an object is inhibited, pushed, driven, acting by command or intimidation, has a one-track mind, and is always looking for reasons things can’t be done or why things can’t work.”
“Think of roses and thorns. You can complain because roses have thorns, or you can rejoice because thorns have roses. You can choose to interpret experiences any way you wish. It is not the experience that determines who you are; it is your interpretation of the experience. You do not see things as they are; you see them as you are.
We are each given a set of experiences in life. The experiences are neutral. They have no meaning. It is how we interpret the experiences that gives them meaning. The interpretations of experiences shape our beliefs and theories about the world. Our beliefs and theories, in turn, determine what we observe in the world to confirm our beliefs, which, in turn, reinforce our interpretations.”
“A popular children’s puzzle shows six fishermen whose lines are tangled together to form a sort of maze. One of the lines has caught a fish; the problem is to find which fisherman it belongs to. You are supposed to do this by following each line through the maze, which may take up to six tries, depending on your luck. It is obviously easier to start at the other end and trace the line from the fish to the fisherman, as you have only one possible starting place, not six.”
“John Patterson, president of National Cash Register, was a fan of Napoleon. Patterson rode horseback with his executives every day at 5 a.m. He demanded that they maintain a "little red book" to record daily activities, thoughts, ideas, and so on. He ruthlessly fired many an employee who failed to maintain a notebook.”
“Whenever Thomas Edison was about to hire a new employee, he would invite the applicant over for a bowl of soup. If the person salted his soup before tasting it, Edison would not offer him the job. He did not hire people who had too many assumptions built into their everyday life. Edison wanted people who consistently challenged assumptions.”
- Description: Michael Michalko is one of the most highly acclaimed creativity experts in the world. As an officer in the U.S. Army, Michael organized a team of NATO intelligence specialists and international academics in Frankfurt, Germany, to research, collect, and categorize all known inventive-thinking methods. His team applied the methods to various NATO military, political, and social problems and produced a variety of breakthrough ideas and creative solutions to new and old problems. Michael later applied these creative-thinking techniques to problems in the corporate world with outstanding successes. The companies he worked with were thrilled with the breakthrough results they achieved, and Michael has since been in the business of developing and teaching creative-thinking workshops and seminars for corporate clients around the world.
He is the author of the best-seller THINKERTOYS: A HANDBOOK OF CREATIVE THINKING TECHNIQUES.
He is also the author of Thinkpak (A Brainstorming Card Set), which is a novel creative-thinking tool that is designed to facilitate brainstorming sessions, and Cracking Creativity (The Secrets of Creative Geniuses)which describes the common thinking strategies creative geniuses have used in the sciences, art, and industry throughout history and shows how we can apply them to become more creative in our business and personal lives.