inside the box

Forget what you were told: think inside the box

In this two-part series, Uma Nnenna lets you in on how to think inside the box. Leveraging what you have to get going.

Sometimes to expand is not just forward, it can happen in any direction. Sometimes to create something new you need to go backwards, to how it used to be.

The process of ‘Thinking outside the box’ is overrated almost everywhere.

It’s common for us to hear a new punchline and hold on to it with so much zeal that we forget that before that line ever existed people were creating ideas. Technological advancement shines all through history and if we acknowledge that a certain time back they all thought inside the box, then we should agree that one can also create ideas inside the box I dare say even better ones.

A few days back, I had to decorate a cake and being an amateur I went through YouTube videos and was in awe of the skill and beauty in decorating cakes, from roses to laces, to even transferable designs! But wait a minute, those designs needed a special metal tool and I had the old plastic tools. It was apparent I could never get that. I went to the kitchen to bring out my old limited tools. Moreover, I had lost a little rubber that without it all of my plastic old decoration tools are useless. But then I remembered that before Wilton (the new tool), people decorated.

Here’s another example, years back, a musician was compelled to play music on an old worn out and incomplete keyboard; for a large theatre at that. He did, he worked with the mess. He worked inside the box forgoing the opportunities outside the box and that album turned out different; unlike any sound anyone had heard before.

Now I know there are endless resources, technology and tools out there to help you build great business ideas but I also want you to try staying inside the box and see what comes out.

I hope for women in entrepreneurship to work both outside and inside the box, because we see the mess as an opportunity to create something extraordinary. If a glass is not cracked you would not have realized you could used nail polish on it to create the most beautiful glasses ever.

Happy Women’s month!

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