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October 29, 2009

A few weeks ago, I was asked by my friend Jeff Klein, author of the recently published book “Working for Good: Making a Difference While Making a Living,” to write a post on his blog on the topic of Constraints. As it turns out, Constraints can be very useful in catalyzing creativity and innovation.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Eugene Robkin permalink
    March 3, 2010 9:48 pm

    This may be in the book or elsewhere a common observation but here it is anyway.

    There is a fundamental difference between something that constrains and something that determines. Confusing these things limits thinking in sometimes fatal ways.

    The pot on the stove constrains its contents to a specific location, heat source, and methods of food preparation. It does not in any way determine what you will eat.

    It you enter a cage with an 800 pound wild animal and the door locks behind you, the cage will constrain all of your subsequent movements in space and time. The animal will determine them.

  2. Robert Beck permalink
    March 10, 2010 2:05 am

    I am sorry to say that I believe the primary hypothesis is invalid. Constraints do not, in reality, exist. Only the incorrect acceptance of them. A pot will only constrain its contents untill the pot boils over or someone tips it on its side or the pot breaks or… Being locked in a cage, with an 800 lb gorilla, is constraining only if you do not have the key or a friend on the outside or a device to spread the bars or …

    In the real world it must be realized that ALL things affect All things at ALL times.

    Most alchoholics find it very difficult to quit. Why? Because when they are in the program they have controls and monitors to assist and direct them. But, once back in the real world, most find, those conrtols and monitors no longer exist. In the real world All things are once again affecting ALL things. And the environment they escaped, while in the program, returns. The constraints are removed, because, in the REAL world, there are no constraints, unless they are artificially created.

    The trap we find in accepting contraints is not realizing they are of your own creation and accepting them as real and constant. When we do this we stop looking for the key to open the cage and escape the gorilla.

    Remember, the ONLY constant is change.

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