New Ideas About New Ideas

Book Reviews | Feb 17th, 2007

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Author: Shira P. White
Publisher: Perseus Publishing
Genre: Business
Pages: 352
Retail Price: 9.99
Buy on Amazon.com link

One of the few books I gave up before finishing, New Ideas lacks any original ones. I guess its goal is to describe how companies benefit from innovation and creativity, but unfortunately, the book is too poorly written and organized to even get THAT out in a clear manner.

The author, an “innovation consultant” (whatever the hell that means), just spews jargon all over the place like “spark soup,” “H3s,” “bubbling” and even “innovation” (that word finds its way into almost every paragraph), while rehashing case studies that usually have nothing to do with innovation. For instance, AOL’s quick entry and overexposure and its obvious result in gaining the lead market share is attributed to innovation, when really it’s just business as usual. (In fact, AOL gained so much market share, not from customer satisfaction or a superior product, but because they just kept dumping it on people.) Other dubious companies, like ImClone and Enron, are praised highly for their innovation, which is sort of like praising Stalin in a book on leadership.

Worse yet, she brings up companies and artists in a random, chaotic way, confusing readers and complicating her point, if she has one. I finally put the book down, not out of frustration, but from the realization that it wasn’t written to be insightful but, like other marketing jargonheads, to be self-advertising.

This book was a bad idea and should never have evolved out of the primordial “spark soup.”

Bottom Line: Book on ideas and creativity that lacks both.
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