Summary of Reinventing Creative Thinking

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7 Overall

8 Applicability

8 Innovation

6 Style


Mental “boxes” influence your views of your business and the future, which is why “thinking outside the box” is so important. But what does this hackneyed phrase really mean? Corporate philosopher Luc de Brabandere offers an approach that harnesses inductive reasoning: the ability to create new boxes unconstrained by existing assumptions. Corporate leaders and strategists will appreciate this intelligent look at the “thinking” aspect of creative thinking.

In this summary, you will learn

  • What the phrase “thinking outside the box” really means,
  • What the difference is between deductive and inductive reasoning, and,
  • How some companies use inductive thinking to innovate.

About the Speaker

Corporate philosopher Luc de Brabandere is a senior adviser to BCG and a professor at École Centrale Paris.



Corporate philosopher Luc de Brabandere was giving a talk about creativity when a CEO asked him to explain what “thinking outside the box” really means. The query forced de Brabandere to reconsider the creative thought process. Creative thinking involves expanding the parameters of thought. For example, finish the following sentences: “An example of a car is…” and “The car is an example of…” The first sentence has rigid parameters, and an answer could be incorrect. Responses originate from a set of established assumptions. In contrast, the second sentence prompts infinite responses, limited only by people’s creativity and imagination. The car is an example of...

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