Where Good Ideas Come From

My full name is Robert Pauling Sawasky Bailey Lennon. My nerdy parents named me after dual Nobel-Prize recipient and great mind Linus Pauling, among others.

I noticed this morning that my namesake believed in the value of Agile long before it even existed:

Our first instinct is to see the highest point as the most positive place on the graph, but statistics tell us a different story--that our best ideas are going to be in that little range at the end.

With so many sub-par ideas to get through, the Bell Curve makes a great argument for a fail fast, agile method for innovation, whether it be in marketing or software development. Quickly move through all the pretty good ideas, to uncover which nuggets are actually gems.

I came upon the slide above while browsing the closing keynote from Agile Day 2012: Everything Is Marketing, Everyone Must Be Agile.

If you're interested, you can read Scott Brinkler's write up about his own presentation here.