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The Ten Faces of Innovation: IDEO's Strategies for Defeating the Devil's Advocate and Driving Creativity Throughout Your Organization
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The Ten Faces of Innovation: IDEO's Strategies for Defeating the Devil's Advocate and Driving Creativity Throughout Your Organization

3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  1,645 ratings  ·  85 reviews
The author of the bestselling The Art of Innovation reveals the strategies IDEO, the world-famous design firm, uses to foster innovative thinking throughout an organization and overcome the naysayers who stifle creativity.

The role of the devil's advocate is nearly universal in business today. It allows individuals to step outside themselves and raise questions and concer
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published October 18th 2005 by Crown Business
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The author, general manager of the design firm IDEO, explains ten roles employees can fill to help companies create and innovate. The roles are Anthropologist (sees everyday life as a source for new ideas); Experimenter (celebrates the prototype process); Cross-Pollinator (uses a wide breadth of learning to improve their main field); Hurdler (turn constraints into opportunity); Collaborator (leads cross-functioning teams where players exchange roles); Director (puts together teams with good chem ...more
Good book on innovation and I want to read the early work, "The Art of Innovation". So 10 roles in innovation, but I focused on the first as they are more applicable to most projects.

1) Athropologists - Observers of the world. Rought edges, work arounds self-modify. Interns are good Athropologists as they have a different perspective. Always keep up with diverse magazines.

2) Experimenter - Allow for failure, many times.
3) Cross-Polinator - Value Diversity, People with "T" shaped backgrounds - d
This is another book that I've meant to read for a while and it's an interesting one by Tom Kelley of IDEO, the famous innovative design company. It has some good ideas for creating an innovative and collaborative environment. Instead of having a devil's advocate in a brainstorming session, IDEO's way of innovating, creating and solving problems encourages different people to take on different roles that are more productive.

The ten roles they suggest are broken up into three types:

Learning Pers
I read this book as a professional development assignment for work. I was part of an online book study with other professionals from my organization.(K-12 public education) I found the book fascinating and the personas that Kelley described very interesting. I was attracted to the book study based on Kelley's description of the Devil's Advocate. Throughout my career I have really disliked the Devil's Advocate as it relates to work and life in general! Kelley speaks about how the Devil's Advocate ...more
Bernard Farrell
Kelley describes the folks who make up an ideal team for innovating within a company. Ideo is fortunate that they can probably create teams with ten folks, each filling one of these roles, but most companies cannot do this. Kelley does a good job of describing the roles of each person, and where they fit in the innovation process. He also explains how to put together a team with fewer folks, each filling more than one role at the right time.

One day I'd like to be a member in a team like this.
seeing what passes for the latest business solution being shoe-horned into the wrong context(yes, six sigma, i'm looking at you)has thrown me to a discipline i previously mocked. sorry about that innovation design.

breezy, well paced and packed with ideas. it's getting a bit dated, but still essential business reading.
Dec 18, 2010 Mike marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I've never seen Erica quite so excited about a book. You'd think she was reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, the way she talks about it keeping her up all night. It sounds like "A Pattern Language", but concentrated on the process, not the results.
Dec 20, 2010 Ghuneim is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Very inspiring book, it shows how great firms like Ideo are established and very creative roles help to keep this kind of firms going.
it's recommended for any type of people, as Tom Kelley gives tips to creative thinking in all aspects of life.
This was a pretty good book about ten different roles people play in doing creative work. The ten roles made sense to me and I have lately found myself thinking things like 'oh yeah this guy is a total hurdler...'

Beyond this however I have a hard time figuring out how to use this book to make myself or my team better at creative work. It felt this was mainly because the author stayed on the surface of describing 'what' the roles were and 'how' they did their job, rather then talking about things
Richard Mulholland
Very very good book - great quotes.
D/E 27/167: 10%
No idea what the above means - but it's what I wrote.
Sergei Nemirovsky
This book had some good, creative ideas, but some of them were too "creative". For example in one of the chapters, Kelly describes how these two guys started developing their product while being consultants at another company because the client had good lab resources. When their contract ended and ID's got revoked, they figured out how to sneak in and continue working. It all ended up good for them, but is this REALLY an example of good creativity?! It's like advising somebody to hack into a cou ...more
Paul Sidwell
For a self-diagnosed paralytically creative person such as myself, this book really helped explain the (author's) ten different types of innovative people. What they do best, how they impact the world using their gifts, and how to best utilize each of these ten types of innovators is the most important part of this book.

Most of us have several of these "faces" within us, sort of like the different hats we get to wear throughout our daily lives.

The biggest takeaway for me was in identifying whic
Mohammed alkindy
what a time to read such a book, where we need it the most to innovate and stop being consumer only. the 10 persona of the innovation are with in and we just need to discover them within our selves. if i have the choice to be what i want to be, it would be the experimenter and cross pollinator, beside an an anthropologist. good book to read for those who need a refresher dosage of motivation to innovate.
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Leah Wescott
This was a slow read for me, but that doesn't make it a bad thing. I savored every delicious bite. Tom Kelley is nice. That fact that he gets innovation right down to his core is only part of his value. He is also humane and humble.

The Ten Faces... breaks down the types of approaches to the world that yield creative, productive problem solving. IDEO models a process of innovation that is actually process of empathy. Why the business world has adopted this approach while higher education lags be
Mar 27, 2008 Michelle rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: designers, entrepreneuers
Tom Kelley's is that there are ten roles or hats that anyone might put on when approaching organizations and problems. These don't necessarily map to the structure of the team.

He defines the roles of the Anthropologist, Experimenter, Cross-Pollinator, Hurdler, Collaborator, Director, Experience Architect, Set Designer, Storyteller, and Caregiver, and gives very inspiring anecdotes to show how each of these roles are particularly valuable in certain situations.

I think I enjoyed it less than other
Excellent book on the critical roles of innovation by Tom Kelley, the head of IDEO and brother of IDEO co-founder David Kelley.

Kelley identifies the key roles in the innovation process that each face plays with the hope that the reader can understand how to identify gaps and staff/develop to meet the need for these roles in their organization.


Anthropologist - The observer of user behaviors who identifies user needs and innovation opportunities.

Experience Architect - The person with a pa
Fernando Veloso
Role playing is important in dealing with problems and situations with diverse aspects. This is a toolbox for relationship management in group projects, giving you ten ways to address different situations, assuming roles such as "the anthropologist " or "the director". I found many handicaps in my ability to assume certain roles, and this book teaches or remembers readers that there can be other ways to interact with the stakeholders in a project.

According to the autor, main engine of innovatio
Bianca Shiu
The Ten Faces of Innovation is full of anecdotes from innovators in all fields - from pole vaulting to Scotch tape to ice cream to phones. Reading the profiles of each "face of innovation" caused me to think more about my role in the organizations I'm involved with and how I can push myself to bring new and creative elements to my work. I identified most with the Collaborator, the Director, and the Caregiver, and I hope to become more of a Storyteller. Overall, The Ten Faces of Innovation is a q ...more
Nate Desmond
Wonderfully clear and straightforward.
Oct 27, 2014 Daniel added it
One more finished!
I play devil's advocate too often, and I've been wondering recently how I can better work with my department and library, how I can be more of an idea grower than an idea stomper. This book didn't deal with the difference between nonprofit and for-profit, which meant it wasn't a complete guidebook for a librarian, but I really dug its examples, vocabulary and main message. There are a lot of ways to make innovation happen, but it's not ever going to happen accidentally. Recommended for middle ma ...more
Stuart Berman
The process of innovation is a team effort. This book describes the attributes of 10 types of people (or roles) that will create the needed elements to best round out the team.
Jiajia Ren
By giving a lot of examples, the book is easy to understand. And it is a good tool book to inspire innovation ideas in team work. However, it is still a little difficult to divide your team into different personas in practice. Or if there is someone who is one kind of personas, but not satisfied with it, how can you deal with this issue. So I mean it is not that easy to just give projects to your team members. There are still many other factors you should consider.
Gary Lang
Read this if only to get familiar with the Learning, Organizing, and Building personas and how they can keep Devil's Advocates at bay when you're trying to innovate.

Also, the book references an episode of the television show "Nightline" which was about IDEO, which is well worth watching if you're interested in design for innovation.

(Thanks for giving this to me, Maureen - I finally got to it!)
Jonathan Bogott
Fun read, but I think it was originally 6 faces of innovation, but that sounded too much like 6 hats... so Tom added a few extras. He brings up a great point why the Devil's Advocate is such an easy trap to fall into and why we rarely need that persona. In engineering specifically, we are trained to point out problems so they can be fixed. Tom gives great alternatives, but it's unfortunate that he couldn't have stuck with just 6.
Apr 09, 2014 Adriana rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: designers UX directors managers
Recommended to Adriana by: Juan Carlos Morales
Shelves: creativity
Great book to understand the different roles we play in the creative process. As creators we may wear multiple (anthropologists, experimenters, cross-pollinators, directors, etc) hats without knowing it. It is great to learn each role individually not only to understand how we think and work but how others do and how they can benefit the development of an idea.
Adih Respati
Tom Kelley is the General Manager of IDEO --Palo Alto-based leading design firm. In 2003, BusinessWeek magazine wrote a cover story article about IDEO, complementing its genius approach in design: emphasizing human experiences by hiring more social scientist (psychologist and anthropologist included) more than designers. Ten Faces is the elaborate version of that BusinessWeek article.
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