The purpose of this article is to present the challenges we have faced and the solutions we have developed over the many years we have been developing a series of software packages, including "Journalism & Public Relations Techniques", "HeadLiner" and "EXPO: 1001 Advertising Media".
Based on the experience of TRIZ-CHANCE's specialists since 1992 (including more than 600 seminars for businessmen, advertisers, designers, copy-writers, public relations specialists, political scientists, psychologists, consultants and so on, hundreds of business consultations, and the analysis of some 2,000 business objectives on the largest specialized Internet forum in the CIS and the Baltics, http://www.triz-ri.ru/forum
), we can affirm that, given growing competition, there is a growing need to find solutions to nonstandard (creative) objectives in various spheres of business
Historical facts and experimental data
Throughout time, there has always been a shortage of good specialists.
The existing system of higher-education, formed over centuries, is oriented toward the preparation of exploitative specialists, who are not prepared to cope with complex, nonstandard situations. Unfortunately, universities do not teach the necessary skills.
Our research shows that in order for the average specialist to become a consultant, he or she must carry out at least 200 practical objectives. Meanwhile, the majority of business consultants and business trainers - their advertising claims notwithstanding - can only offer at best a handful of effective solutions…
Effects of Thought
Limiting of the search parameters.
Statistics show that a person resolving a nonstandard objective unwittingly narrows the search field, using only 10-15% of the total number of potential resolution vectors. Thus, boxers consistently use only a few "classic moves" out of their arsenal, artists and photographers generally exhibit only a few proprietary techniques, while film and theater directors repeatedly make use of their best "discoveries"…
We accommodate such an effect within the bounds of "personal opinion" or "style", but we are critical of it as it concerns the resolution of problems that fall outside these bounds, including those complex tasks connected with the advancement of production, the management of personnel and so on, when the potential economic loss from a mistake exceeds that of an individual's creative failure by several orders of magnitude.
Around the world, so-called "expert systems" are brought to bear in such situations. For example, the on-board computer of the American "Stealth" aircraft contains a precedent-based expert system to deal with unexpected situations, while Nikon's professional cameras contain a program to help deal with 30,000 shooting conditions . In order to solve any technical problems that clients may face, GE created an expert system, comprising a growing database of 1.5 million potential problems and their solutions. Thanks to the latest developments in artificial intelligence, the system allows real-time diagnostics and helps answer questions quickly .
The multidimensionality of the object of study.
Such phenomena as
- conflicts between employees of a firm;
- the specificities of written and oral language;
- human decision-making processes, and so on
are fundamentally multidimensional, which makes it practically impossible to develop written instrumental
 rather than descriptive
business-methods. Unfortunately, paper is two-dimensional.
For example, every month a number of books are published on rhetoric, advertising and PR, but it is fairly difficult to actualize the advice they contain in practice. As a result, we have developed our own multidimensional classification, including hundreds of advertising, journalism and public relations techniques , .
The idea of modeling human action is not new, and it is difficult to find an arena in which it has not been attempted (for example, the crane was thought up as a "long iron arm"). The first industrial revolution in the 18th
century was, to a large extent, based on such mechanisms (spinning and combing machines, and so on). But those were attempts to model physical action. It took more than a century and a half before the task of modeling mental activity became thinkable. And it turned out that complex tasks require a person to use several models of a situation in parallel .
Below, we will briefly discuss our main solutions and the objectives they address.
Some of the most common approaches to
- nonstandard (creative) tasks include:
- refusing to attempt nonstandard tasks;
- following well-known examples;
- trying to find the "secret" in a book or on the Internet;
- turning to expensive consultants;
- studying to raise professional qualifications, and so on.
While not ignoring the above-mentioned approaches, we believe it is useful to employ computerized expert systems
under the condition that the user:
- allow a mildly gifted person to broaden his or her creative palette (see Effect 1 and Fact 3);
- allow the use of several multidimensional models of the subject area simultaneously (see Effects 2 and 3);
- do not guarantee but significantly raise the probability of a solution to specific types of creative tasks,
- shows good will;
- is not afraid of a computer;
- is willing to spent one to two hours on training.
We and our partners have developed several such systems, which already have several thousand users.