The author presents 101 techniques to stimulate creativity and innovation in individuals and groups.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Higgins spends two short chapters discussing problem solving and innovation, then he gets down to the techniques. He has techniques for recognizing and identifying problems, analyzing the environment, brainstorming problem-solving ideas, and choosing solutions. One of my favorite facts about this book is that he has 38 techniques for individuals to brainstorm ideas, yet also has another 32 group brainstorming techniques. He really includes something for everyone in this smorgasbord.
I have adapted and used a number of these successfully: the Lotus Blossom and Two Words Techniques have been excellent brainstorming processes for me. I have shown a large number of people the Why-why diagram for uncovering the root causes of problems. I have shared my copy of this book with five or six people, each of whom went out and bought their own copy.
If you're looking for an easily read book that gets you started on formal, process-oriented problem solving (as advocated by Quality Management philosophies), this is a great starting point.
I liked the way the author James M. Higgins, gave real life examples of Giant Corporations that have used one or more of these problem-solving techniques.
The 101 techniques described in this book are broken down to by problem solving stages: environmental analysis, recognizing and identifying problems, making assumptions, generating alternatives, making choices and implementing solutions. Each one of these processes is described in detail with graphics and, some chapters will have exercises that are deemed helpful in understanding the technique.
The techniques are presented in alphabetical order and are numbered twice, the first number denotes the techniques position from 1 to 101, and the second number is the techniques position within that section of the problem-solving model.
Chapter 4 which focused on individual techniques is the one that I personally found to be most helpful. In my line of work as an IT Consultant I have exercised a few of these techniques such as mind mapping, but I also found other techniques that I can't wait to start using my next project.
There are many techniques to try in this book, some of these techniques you may not like, others won't fit, but overall this is a handy book to use for your problem-solving efforts.