Best Practices Are Stupid by Stephen M. Shapiro - Book review

Best Practices Are Stupid

40 Ways to Out-Innovate the Competition

By: Stephen M. Shapiro

Published: September 29, 2011
Format: Hardcover, 224 pages
ISBN-10: 1591843855
ISBN-13: 978-1591843856
Publisher: Portfolio/Penguin

"Let's face it, the old models of innovation are broken, are inefficient, and fail to produce results", writes speaker and innovation expert Stephen M. Shapiro, in his provocative and thought provoking book Best Practices Are Stupid: 40 Ways to Out-Innovate the Competition. The author challenges the traditional and standard practices for creative thinking and innovation, and recommends discarding them for fresh concepts that lead efficiently and effectively to new and exciting innovations.

Stephen Shapiro recognizes that the usual procedures and techniques for creative thinking are not effective. The author also considers them to be inefficient and time wasting, as they result in too many ideas that are not useful, and cause delay as the most useful ideas must be sifted out of the excess volume. In place of the time wasting methods that have yielded little in the way of real creativity and innovation, Stephen Shapiro shares forty proven and often contrarian strategies that will transform any organization from a moribund organization that fails to focus on the real goal of staying ahead of the competition. The author dispenses with the idea of thinking outside of the box and instead proposes building an entire new and superior box in its place.

Stephen Shapiro (photo left) understands that the key component of innovation is change, including change within and outside of the company. Organizations that seek innovation simply to survive will not succeed, but need to consider the real goal of innovation as the ability of the business to adapt to and overcome the changes in an ever evolving marketplace. For Stephen Shapiro, a faster rate of external change from the pace of change within the company, places the business on the road to disaster.

Stephen Shapiro proposes a three level approach to innovation, to enable a clear eyed examination of where and how innovation fits into the company culture. The three steps are as follows:

* Innovation as an event
* Innovation as a capability
* Innovation as a system

For me, the power of the book is how Stephen Shapiro completely deconstructs the standard practices utilized in companies to achieve some form of innovation. The best practices approach to creativity and innovation have not produced the desired results, and in many cases have inhibited or even derailed the entire innovation process. The author shares forty real world proven techniques to stimulate efficient and effective innovation designed to move the company to the forefront of its industry. Stephen Shapiro provides a repeatable and sustainable innovation system that can be used over and over again to move a company ahead of its competition.

I highly recommend the often contrarian, but always real world marketplace focused book Best Practices Are Stupid: 40 Ways to Out-Innovate the Competition by Stephen M. Shapiro, to anyone seeking an entirely fresh and straight talking approach to innovation and its real goals and purpose. The author makes clear that the usual tactics employed by companies, in hopes of stimulating new ideas and innovation, are simply too inefficient and ineffective for today's ever changing and highly competitive business environment.

Read the no nonsense and very focused book Best Practices Are Stupid: 40 Ways to Out-Innovate the Competition by Stephen M. Shapiro, and introduce some real innovation into your organization. To stay ahead of the ever adaptable competition, this book will help you abandon those outdated and ineffective best practices forever.

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