The premise of the talk was based on the idea that you only truly understand what you have experienced. I gave people exercises to struggle with the boundaries of language and experience.
So how is any of this related to innovation?
Innovation at its core is new language construction. You find words for that which doesn’t yet exist or remains unseen.
Most of our communication is of a non-verbal nature, most of it “unseen” in the sense that we don’t make it explicit. I lived in a world in which I had to make the implicit, the intangible but understood context, explicit for myself through observation and deduction. It’s not that black and white though; some of it was understood without the need for words. It is a skill that took decades to develop. It is the same skill that underlies the work necessary to innovate.
During the workshop I created experiences that helped people develop language for their unique perspective and to experience a different one.