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Reviewers, Bloggers, Journalists, PR, and Podcasters

Book themes to use for discussion for ‘A Thousand Little Light Bulbs: How to Kickstart a culture of innovation in your organisation’ by Simon Banks. Simon is a sought-after speaker, author and thought leader in business innovation and creativity.

The book is a uniquely Australian look at Innovation. Simon succinctly summarises the need for Australian Businesses to stop thinking creativity is something that other people do – designers, hipsters, advertising and PR agencies; that in fact creativity could, and should occur every day. Each and every individual in large organisations has something to contribute. Companies need to start empowering their people and creating an environment where diversity, freshness and people’s unique self can thrive.

People are Australia’s most underused Innovation resource.

There are plenty of potential stories in the book. The themes and corresponding page numbers are listed below.

The importance of people in Innovation

  • P. 6 Every leader interviewed for this book stressed the importance of people as critical to the future success of their business
  • P. 31-33
    • People are the starting point for all Innovation. Not digital/processes/systems or things (where the focus usually is).
    • UTS Chancellor and former CSIRO chair, Catherine Livingstone states, “The starting point for any discussion on innovation has to be people. Not governments, not institutions, not businesses, but the people inside them. It’s an intensely human activity – minds rubbing on minds.”

The importance of creativity

  • P. 8/9
    • Creativity is no longer a nice to have, it’s essential.
    • The World Economic Forum lists creativity, which it defines as “the ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation” 2 as the third top skill that will be needed for employment in 2020.
  • P. 23 – 26 We were designed to be creative and have been innovating since day 1. Creativity and Imagination is what makes humans unique.

Australia has an Innovation Problem

  • P. 10 – 11 On Global Innovation indexes, Australia ranks poorly compared to the rest of the world.
  • P. 12 The Australian Innovation Systems Report has further bad news about Australia’s innovation performance.
  • P. 15 If pursued, Innovation makes a big difference to the bottom line of Australian business.
  • P. 17 Australia’s unique peculiarity: According to the Global Creativity Index, Australia has the world’s most talented workforce but Australia struggles with innovation. Australia has the right ingredients but it’s making it happen.
  • P. 26 – 31 Australian companies need to reframe the Innovation Challenge to get greater buy in.

Creativity, Curiosity and Imagination are normal

  • P. 35 – Great ideas exist everywhere, everyone has them.
  • P. 45, 49 – 58 What’s killing our creativity (and why we fear it).
  • P. 67 – 71 – The number one reason people tell themselves they’re not creative.

A framework for Innovation (but not as you know it)

  • P. 62 Innovation methodologies are useless unless they are accompanied by curiosity, braveness, imagination and agility.
  • P. 64-65 The Framework steps
    • P. 71 – 77 Dealing with your Ogre: The number one reason you tell yourself you’re not creative
    • P. 93 – 100 Two Words that kill ideas and fresh thinking
    • P. 115 – 119 You need to be a curious cat

What’s killing Innovation?

  • P. 45 The problem with left brain dominated thinking
  • P. 77 – 81 The fear of failure
  • P. 93 – 100 Two words that kill ideas and fresh thinking
  • Australian Corporate Mindsets, Myths and Fables
    • P. 104 – 107 I love sport, not arty-farty stuff
    • P. 108 – 109 People not bringing their whole self to work
    • P. 147 – The over analytical death roll

How to have great ideas/How to get unstuck in your thinking

  • P. 128 Great things in = great things out
  • P. 129 – 135 Innovators constantly look at the world with eyes wide open. Inspiration is everywhere.
  • P. 142 – 145 Why a diverse team drives great ideas
  • P. 153 Completely disrupt your thinking and assumptions
  • P. 157 Steal, poach and borrow
  • P. 162 Have Empathy
  • P. 164 Embrace Constraints
  • P. 175 Walk, Look and Write
  • P. 201 – 204 How to develop an idea and keep it alive The Power of Prototyping p.179
  • P. 180 Why you need to get your hands dirty
  • P. 186 The importance of storytelling
  • P. 186 – 187 Why our brain loves visual communication

A culture of Innovation exists when people share ideas

  • P. 207 – 208 The importance of pitching
  • P. 211 How to give feedback so ideas thrive
  • P. 212 – 217 How to reward and motivate for Innovation

Essential steps to create a culture of Innovation

The transformative power of an Innovation mindset
For Teams P. 218 -222

  • Possibilities are endless when people embrace their imagination and creativity
  • The power of an innovation mindset: New ideas, higher productivity and increased collaboration

For Companies P. 222 – 225

  • A new way of solving problems
  • Creating a culture of Innovation is something all companies can achieve

For People’s lives P. 225 – 229

  • A creative life is a fulfilled life
  • A creative life means more possibilities for you and your family
  • Life wasn’t meant to be lived in the comfort zone. Start your bucket list straight away
  • P. 230 How to keep your imagination alive

Leadership and creativity

  • 233 How to maintain your creative flow
  • 235 An innovation mindset doesn’t require more time, just a shift in how you spend your time

If you would like to use any of the Illustrations in the book in your story, please contact the team at If you need to download the Questions, click here.


simonbanks book Newsroom Resources:

  • Photos of Simon, the Book, Innovation Framework, Sneak Peek at Layouts and Media Release can be downloaded here Simon Banks Newsroom Resources
  • If you need to download the Questions from this page, click here.
  • If you would like to use any of the Illustrations in the book in your story, please contact the team at

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