One idea might not work solo, but you could combine several ideas, processes, or products into one for a more efficient outcome. You don’t have to come up with something completely new, because the solution(s) already exists. Like a hamburger effect!
For example, the pandemic has brought in the hybrid form of working in most organizations globally. Employees are allowed to combine workdays partly from home and partly from office.
Mostly you would already have had the right solution to your problem, you just don’t know it yet. Sometimes an idea that worked to solve one problem, could also be used to solve a different problem.
For example, thanks to the Covid situation, schools have adapted their curriculum for virtual modes of learning.
Change an aspect of your product or service, for example by magnifying, i.e., exaggerating or minimizing them, and see whether it gives you a new insight or adds more value to the user.
For example, denim pockets magnified to be bigger in size to accommodate your large-screen smartphones or minimized to tuck in a key.
• Put to another use
Think of how you might be able to put your current product or service to other uses or think of what you could reuse from somewhere else to solve your problem. Many times, an idea only becomes great when applied differently than first imagined.
For example, toothpaste can be an amazing ingredient to polish up not just your pearly white teeth but your silverware too! It is also used as a quick first aid for minor burns because of its cooling properties.
It’s about removing inefficient parts of a process or features of your products or services with a goal to streamline them. Through repeated tweaking of ideas, features, or processes, you can gradually zero in on those functions or features that are most important.
For example, when the pandemic was ongoing, many organizations were trying to find out ways to deliver their products and services with minimum or no contact. This ranged from delivery of essentials and meals to the dissemination of exams and elections. Several innovative practices emerged as a result of these efforts.
Think of what you would do if part of your problem, product, or process worked in reverse or were done in a different order. Sometimes when you reverse the way a product is used, it will help you see things from a different perspective.
For example, McDonald’s pioneered self-service where payment is done first for the service. Hence reversing the process of service.
So now that we have a look and feel of S.C.A.M.P.E.R, why don’t we try and apply this toolkit to a work problem. Are you game?
Arlene is a baker by chance, handmade bespoke products are her forte; she now wants to reach a greater audience in the city. This would surely boost her revenue and brand.
Take a look at how Arlene uses the S.C.A.M.P.E.R. toolkit to approach her problem statement. Below are some points for reflection:
- Can you spot how Arlene uses the SCAMPER toolkit for products, processes, and services?
- What else would you suggest to Arlene?