Personal brand and lateral thinking

It's been done. 40 years that the Maltese thinker Edward de Bono published his "Side Thinking", one of the best creative manuals that has ever existed. I assure you that the method set out in Bono's book is still more in force than ever. Today I will try to establish an analogy between lateral thinking and personal branding.

If we consider that a personal brand is the bearer of a message and if we take into account that that message should be convincing, differential and relevant, we already have a justification for using divergent or lateral thinking techniques.

To make a difference that helps us generate a preference we need to think and act differently (that also was picked up by Einstein). Tom Peters, In "The brand You 50" establishes divergent thought forms such as "The main chance is becoming a free agent in an economy of free agents, looking to do your best work and to secure a remarkable track record".

If we spend our lives trying to solve our weaknesses, we will abandon our strengths and lose a unique opportunity to Position in a linear environment.

Here we summarize some of the techniques that includes lateral thinking, both in provocations and in analogies:

Random word

It's about introducing a random word (entry point), then generate a word that's related to it, and so on, repeating this last step. Every time you change your word, you will try to join this to the problem for which a solution is being sought, generating possible ideas.


In this case the object(s) involved in the problem is examined and a feature of the same is denied or canceled. From this new environment, this new situation generated, you look for ideas with the usual tools.

Stone on the Road

Here the idea is to exaggerate, distort or modify in any way an entity in the environment of the problem (it is generally very useful to assume that a certain entity is as you wish it was, not as it really is).

The investment method

In reversing problems these are altered in their sense to see what is their opposite and see how they can be solved, see the problem and turn it to a favorable outcome. As for this method it is not planned to solve the problem completely but the taking of the main idea when investing it will serve to approach your solution. The investment method also tries to avoid chaining ideas and closing, looking for the most far-fetched solutions can sometimes work. Seeing the problem from different points of view, don't just look at one, have different viewing angles that allow us to have a clearer view of the problem, don't see it superficially.

Fractionation or division

The goal of fractionation is to break the strong unity of ideas models, regardless of whether it's confusing in some points, but it's not about finding the parts or dividing the models into components, but to create new parts and split the same components. Thus, by dividing the model, material is obtained for a restructuring of the models, you try to form a new order. The objective of fractionation is to avoid the effects of implicit inhibition on fixed models by decomposition.

Ideal answers

According to De Bono, there are three ways in which thought can be obstructed: Some information may be missing, there may be a mental block or the obvious obstructs the vision of a better option. The third case would have a solution with lateral logic. Once the information is structured it is already difficult to transform it into anything else. In this way it seems obvious that the only way out is that which offers the information already structured, so if you answer the problem you try to solve, it seems that there is no need to look for another.

I assure you that if you apply any or more of these techniques to improve your personal brand. Often I meet clients presenting clear cases blocking. For example, people with extensive experience in a field that, having failed in a project, decide to reinvent themselves by giving up the experience gained.

I wish you all the best in the attempt. If you need a little help, count on me.

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