The Out-Thinker Process

Out-think the Competition

Innovation rarely happens by accident, especially once an organization or team is executing. We tend to think that it’s a magical property that leaders and teams either have or will always lack. But as Kaihan Krippendorff’s work shows, the traits and behaviors for innovation can be cultivated through a purposeful process using proven principles and stratagems. The Out-thinker Process equips leaders and their teams with a practical, repeatable method to develop and adjust an innovative strategy that helps them outthink and outperform their competition.


Times of major change, like the one we are experiencing today, disturb the order of power. They divide leaders into those flexible enough to embrace new perspectives (“out-thinkers”) and those who work within old points of view (“thinkers”). The success of organizations and careers depends to a great extent on the ability to shift a paradigm and inspire others to do the same.

This session draws on the study of hundreds of history’s most competitive companies from Wal-Mart and GE to Google and Baidu. It shows that businesses unlock breakthrough growth when a team of leaders collaborates to shift their perspectives and thereby see strategic options that their competitors overlook.

It packages a set of simple strategizing tools that help a team collaboratively define a creative growth strategy by facilitating a five-stage process (IDEAS):

  • Imagine: define your strategic vision and agree on the key question you must answer to get there
  • Dissect: identify potential points of leverage that will allow you to realize your vision more quickly and easily
  • Expand: use strategic patterns (stratagems) to generate
  • more innovative potential strategies than your competition
  • Analyze: isolate the strategies with the greatest disruptive potential (e.g., the ones clients will love and competitors will not copy)
  • Sell: wrap your strategy in a communication that wins interest and support

During the session, leaders will work on their own real-world business challenge. Immediately applying the strategy design process will both progress their current business challenge and prepare them to use this methodology in future leadership challenges.

“Innovation is not an option. It is a fundamental requisite of survival. Throughout history, innovative societies have dominated their less- creative rivals. The first civilizations to adopt a new innovation — the first to embrace agriculture, direct rivers, learn metallurgy, or organize themselves into governments — always gained power over their neighbors, at least for some period of time. Indeed, the ability to innovate has determined life and death, dominance and subservience, winning and losing for as long as man has been concerned with such things. In the same way, innovative companies dominate their competition.”

Program topics

  • The five phases of change
  • Seven strategic questions that unlock disruptive business ideas
  • The mental mathematical challenge that, once overcome, unlocks breakthrough strategies
  • How to efficiently drive to focused “discontent”
  • How to rapidly identify the most disruptive opportunities
  • Pre-empting our tendency to kill off unorthodox ideas
  • Helping teams collaboratively reach strategic clarity

Learning objectives

  • Learn and gain command over a set of strategic thinking tools
  • Experience applying these tools to real problems
  • Feel ready to apply these tools to problems faced today
  • Feel more confident in the ability to facilitate colleagues to design creative growth strategies


“All innovations start when someone experiences a Shift by naming something, categorizing it, or seeing a use for it in a novel way and then convinces others to experience the same Shift. It is the aim of this book to help you understand how to cause the Shift in yourself, your organization and your environment . . . to become a more effective innovator, better skilled at changing the world.”