November 30, 2004

Excerpts: 10 Lessons from History's Innovators - Part IV

By: Dylan Schleicher @ 1:31 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

Lesson #3- ITS OK TO STEAL. The corollary to item 2. More innovations come from borrowing and combination than simple invention. Henry Ford said, I invented nothing new. I simply assembled into a car the discoveries of other men behind whom were centuries of work. The imaginative association of ideas previously considered separate is a hallmark of innovation. Jean Nidetch did not invent the diet she used for Weight Watchers. Nolan Bushnell did not invent the first home video game. Lewis Tappan, a model of moral probity, did not start the first credit agency. Ruth Handler stole the Barbie doll from a German sex doll named Lilli. Good artists borrow, great artists steal, said Picasso, who may have lifted the quote from someplace else. From the book THEY MADE AMERICA by Harold Evans, with Gail Buckland and David Lefer. (c) 2004 Little, Brown & Co.

About Dylan Schleicher

Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.