A More Beautiful Question by Warren Berger.

I learned that asking the right questions is the best way to come up with breakthrough solutions to our biggest challenges. I also learned that there is a formula for coming up with the right questions.

Here is an insight and an exercise inspired by the book to consider this week

Idea: What If?

Asking "what if" gives us the power to imagine how things might be different.

One of the best ways to do this is through the combination of ideas. As David Kord Murray, a former NASA rocket scientist who later became the head of innovation at Intuit points out in his book Borrowing Brilliance:

“The nature of innovation [is that] we build new ideas out of existing ideas.”

For instance, Walt Disney asked himself “what if this amusement park could be like a movie, brought to life?” The good news for us is that according to the latest neurological research, the human brain is built just right for this type of task, constantly searching through the random data in your brain and asking “what if I put this together with that?”


Take one of your biggest challenges or opportunities you are facing, and start combining existing ideas to solve it. Be creative, and make sure to approach it with an attitude that any combination is possible, and no combination is too crazy.

Eventually you'll come up with a combination that actually works.