The author, Michael Michalko, prefaces the book by stating that Thinktoys is for “monkeys,” not “kittens.” He defines “kittens” as people who ask for help, but are not willing to make the effort necessary to make changes. “Monkeys,” on the other hand, take the initiative and face challenges head-on. Michalko states that the activities contained within the book must be used, not merely read, for them to make a difference in the reader’s way of looking at problems.
I found this book enlightening. I was surprised over and over by the simple exercises that I couldn’t figure out until reading the explanation. I didn’t even make it into the first chapter before realizing my shortcomings. For example, in the introduction, there is a picture of the word “FLOP.” However, if you look closely, the center of the “O” contains an “I,” so the complete message is “FLIP FLOP.” I’m embarrassed to say that I would never have picked up on that on my own. It gave me an immediate desire to read more and work on my creative skills.
Thinkertoys is the best single collection of quick creative thinking exercises that I’ve found in a single book, ever. It’s not a be-all end-all compendium of these exercises, but many very good ones are in the book, including a few great ones that I knew before reading it and several more that I added to my repertoire after reading it.
Don’t miss out Go buy this book and use it to gain the creative edge. Click here and pick up a copy.