If you are working for a company, the reality is totally opposite. A company trains people to think "inside of the box" even in a new business development office. When engaging in producing executive summaries, proposals, or examining new proposals from other organizations, even in a company brain position, such as a strategic business development, a company disciplines its staff to think inside of the box, not outside.
Are you surprised? In periodic executive meetings, or when you need to produce executive summaries, your boss was constantly watching and asking what could be different from the previous time. They had their own file of all of previous summaries. The first step, for staff making new proposal, was to open the past example from Hard Disk Drive. If this way, there is no way they can "think outside of the box".
One day, Mr. Jack Welch, GE, was visiting my former employer. He was not as tall as I thought. He was calm, smiling, and gentleman looking person. I met him before. He remembered me from the previous meeting and asked my name, and politely accepted my business card. He was speaking for directors in that afternoon. I could listen to his speech. As he spoke, his gentleman like approach did not change, but his reasoning was, sharp, keen, and acute. He spoke in the way he got right to the point.
His point in his speech on that day was that he appreciated people who proposed "something different" from what they did in the past. He said, when one was proposing a copy of what he already did, Mr. Welch would have never accepted it. He was joking that his company has 200 years history of bureaucracy; therefore, it is not easy to find something, which they have not done before.
The contents of speech by Mr. Welch on that day reminded me of one scene in the movie "The Matrix". The hero Neo was trying to save their leader Morpheus. He decides to attack military building. It looked impossible and suicidal. His partner Trinity told him that nobody had ever done like that. Neo answers, "I know. That is why it works."
People tend to think that it did not work when they came across something belongs to outside of their box. People are judgmental and hypocritical to those who think differently. They will discourage those who try things outside of the box. They may laugh at you, criticize you, and tell you it does not work.
They were excellent signs, if you meet people who laugh at, criticize, oppose to, and reject your idea. Do not worry. There will be a person who views the value of our thinking outside of the box, and settle with it, like Mr. Welch. Time will prove that you are right.
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