James D. Feldman CSP

James D. Feldman CSP


A practitioner with insight, wisdom & big picture thinking.

Jim collaborates with organizations to evaluate problems, create a vision where others aren't looking, capture what others are not seeing, on the Journey To Bright Ideas.

Fee Range: Available Upon Request
Travels from Chicago, IL (US)

For more information about booking James D. Feldman CSP, visit

Or call SpeakerMatch at 1-866-372-8768.

James D. Feldman CSP
Mr. James Feldman CSP, , CITE, CPT, CPIM, MIP, PCS - Motivational Speaker

Shift Happens!®

A practitioner with insight, wisdom & big picture thinking.

Jim collaborates with organizations to evaluate problems, create a vision where others aren't looking, capture what others are not seeing, on the Journey To Bright Ideas.

Fee Range: Available Upon Request
Travels from Chicago, IL

  • The National Speakers Association
  • Certified Speaking Professional
James D. Feldman CSP - Motivational Speaker

James D. Feldman CSP

Shift Happens!®

A practitioner with insight, wisdom & big picture thinking.

Jim collaborates with organizations to evaluate problems, create a vision where others aren't looking, capture what others are not seeing, on the Journey To Bright Ideas.

Fee Range: Available Upon Request
Travels from: Chicago, IL

  • The National Speakers Association
  • Certified Speaking Professional

For more information about booking James D. Feldman CSP,
Visit http://www.speakermatch.com/profile/jamesfeldman/
Or call SpeakerMatch at 1-866-372-8768.

3DThinking: Inside the box

December 12, 2014

Once you master the 3Dthinking process and techniques you are ready to solve any problem, to discover opportunities and to create innovative solutions. This technique, when coupled with the KnowBrainer is a the perfect solution to 'mind blocks.'

You’ll be shifting as SHIFT,HAPPENS around you and thriving in this ever-changing world.Innovation is the quickest, most effective, and most lucrative path to success. Waiting for another firm to introduce a product, then playing catch-up may be fine if you are IBM or Coca-Cola and can afford to wait. But such companies are notable exceptions in the game of competition.

For the majority of businesses, real success comes from their own efforts and from timing – their ability to be there first, not from feeding off the ideas of others. And with product and brand proliferation in the marketplace of today the consumer is BEGGING for really innovative solutions to their perceived needs and problems. If you aren’t RE-INNOVATING, chances are you’ve dropped into the “price barrel” along with all the other “me too” products and services.

So how does a firm or an individual begin to use creative thinking in order to innovate? First, understand that innovation isn’t always about inventing products using new technology. Thousands of successful products or services are used in a radically different manner than originally intended; the result…INNOVATIVE new positions for old products. In these cases the true Innovation is in the new method of application rather than in the unique nature of the original concept. 

For example, using PROCESS INNOVATION, you may redirect your excess capacity or processes to support your most profitable products or services.

Innovation is how we make money from creativite thinking– we sell the idea and show others how to apply it to solve a variety of problems.

To INNOVATE I encourage you to Think Beyond the Profits; Think “What If?”

Here is an example of creative thinking that blossomed into INNOVATION without a profit motive;

This is a story about a young girl’s  birthday party demands and how they spawned a true INNOVATION in the world of photography. Daddy , happily snapping shot after shot of her and her friends was mildly put out when his little daughter stamped her foot and demanded “I want to see my pictures, NOW, Daddy!”  Her Daddy happened to be Edward Land. Her demands started his 3D THINKING wheels turning; : “Well, why can’t she have the pictures now?” The INNOVATIVE solution that came from a 5 year old’s party was the Polariod LAND camera. It occurs to us, with example after example of real INNOVATION that comes because people recognize a need that can be met  and, IF ONLY…… WHAT IF? Are part of their vocabulary. 

Perhaps we all need to think more like a child and imagine that we can have that picture now. Zoom ahead a few years and we see that Polaroid is in bankruptcy. They missed the digital revolution because they forgot the modest beginnings.

How could this happen? One common way is when the management of the corporation stifles creativity throughout the organization.This could be due to an overemphasis on the bottom line on a cautious approach to spending.

Centuries ago, kings and other royalty had  many “yes-men” by their side. The yes men played an important role; they simply reinforced the kings choices. But the wisest kings  employed fools who had special permission to make fun of and criticize the king’s policies without fear.

Present day CEOs have “yes-men,” but they are in dire need of someone to give them an honest opinion, someone who can tell those in the royal boardroom that the old ways are no longer effective and that innovation is how to make money.

Creativity thinking  goes hand in hand with the courage to embrace the new and innovative. But how do we do that

Embrace Innovative “Disasters”

Innovation can occur where you least expect it. Imagine a scientist is trying to producea super fast glue. He tries and tries, but the glue just does not stick. His product is a complete disaster. Or is it? Every office in the world now has glue that does not stick in the traditional way.

If the scientist had rethought the meaning of stick… perhaps he needed to redefine the question. “How do I join two thinks together quickly?”  The scientist, who worked at 3M, had just invented the raw material for the PostIt® note. While using it for a different purpose he invented a new soltion. The PostIt note is now one of the most profitable products at 3M. 

Even Christopher Columbus, one of the great innovators of his time, could not have been much further from his intended destination of India when he discovered America. But that “disaster” delivered to the civilized world what we now regard as the land of opportunity.

So even though the results you get may not be what you expected, continue to think creatively and the product of that process will be INNOVATION.

Disasters can sometimes become rare opportunities, and unintended results may very well bring you an unexpected gift.

Look for Inspiration Everywhere

Think creatively everywhere. (You can start the process by asking WHAT IF….) Think when you are out walking, when you are in the shower, when you are listening to a boring speaker. Switch your mind off and think about that problem that has been bugging you. Don’t bother with contrived brainstorming sessions and working parties, because you cannot plan to create on demand. But you can organize your mind to be constantly receptive to new ideas wherever you happen to be.

Here’s an example of what we mean;  In 1941, a scientist went hunting with his dog.

When he arrived home, he found that wood-burs were stuck to his woolen jacket and trousers. He was fascinated with the burrs ability to grab hold of his clothing so tenaciously and decided to examine them to find out WHY. Carefully inspecting the burs under a microscope, he found hundreds of little hooks engaging the loops in the material.  

The scientist, George de Mestral, made a machine to duplicate the hooks and loops in nylon. He called his new product Velcro, and the rest is history.

Today thousands of uses for Velcro® Fasteners exist, in both personal use and industry.

This is  all thanks to a man hunting with his dog in the mountains who was willing to ask WHAT IF… and followed it to where it led him..


The only problem with thinking everywhere is that we often don’t have a way to record our ideas when they come to us.

Then we forget then someone one else hits on the same idea and it’s too late. The solution is to keep a pen and paper handy in every room of the house, especially by your bed and near the shower. When you are driving, use a dictating machine in the car. This way you can archive your thoughts before you forget them.

Plan Your Luck

Chance discoveries do not really occur by chance. Rather, an environment must be one that allows new ideas to be conceived, recognized for their potential contribution, expanded into tailor-made solutions, and then finally developed into products for other customers. And the best way to arrive at innovative solutions is to use innovative thinking.

To that end, encourage your employees to ask questions; such as, “Why do we do it this way?” And ask them to answer the question, then quickly ask again…WHAT IF….

The important next step for management is to be open to the wild conjectures that accompany real creative thinking.

Remember, in a truly creative culture NOTHING IS EVER WRONG. Some ideas simply work better than others.

Nurture  new ideas and welcome the questions as a way to open the channels of communication and keep the stream of possible solutions flowing.

Beware of Leaks

Given that  most of the marketplace is busy chasing each other’s tails creating “me too” products and services, genuinely new ideas are hard to come by and very difficult to patent, the shortest route to new ideas can be to get them from someone else. We encourage you to be alert to the possibility that others may be listening to the new idea you are sharing with someone. An idle sentence may just provide the missing ingredient to a competitor’s research and development department. Where innovation is concerned, keep quiet and keep your ears open, because you too may obtain problem-solving ideas from other markets or businesses.  In your own office, beware of boastful types. A surprising number of people proudly broadcast details of their firm’s research and innovation.

And, those who leak the most information are usually higher up on the corporate ladder. 

Perhaps one key to successful innovation is skillful ego massaging. That is, share your ideas, but use caution when choosing who you share them with.

Think Creatively , then Innovate!

Innovation requires more than creative thinking. It is also dependent on the development of ideas into products and services to keep your company shifting as SHIFTHAPPENS. And that takes true determination. In the end, your determination to succeed is the ultimate stimulus for achievement. Although many people can create with innovative concepts, only those who are determined to implement those ideas achieve success. Once you nurture your ideas into being, charge ahead with the innovative spirit that all successful companies possess. Remember that innovation combines effort and timing, and capitalizes on our desire to be first. Using this approach, your business has very opportunity to achieve success.

Defining the problem: Amount of Time Required: .5 - 1 hour

  1. Identify the components of the problem.
  2. Using the concept of going inside the box, determine the components of the problem. To fully understand a problem we must break down all the elements that create it. Use the KnowBrainer to generate ideas, questions, images, and what the end results would be if you could predict them.
  1. First write the problem down.
  2. Second write down the desired solution.
  3. Then breakdown all the elements that are contained in the problem that could create it in the first place. And determine what are the next steps and desired income, etc.
  4. Understand how to utilize the components in the solution of the problem-solving process.
  5. Define the problem in the most concise and focused manner.
  6. Select the components of an information collection plan.
  7. Learn how to collect information.
  8. Identify the characteristics of an innovative solution.
  9. Complete the Depth phase of the 3DThinking™ process.
  10. If you do not define the problem correctly you will be working to reach the solutions to the wrong problem. Take your time. Visualize the end results and see if the problem is articulated correctly.

Evaluating a 3D solution: Amount of Time Required: 0.5 - 1.5 hours

  1. Select process-based strategies for generating solutions.
  2. Identify market-opportunity strategies for generating solutions.
  3. Identify the solution generation strategy being used.
  4. Generate solution options.
  5. Identify the steps for selecting the best solution.
  6. Sequence the steps for selecting the best solution.
  7. Select the best solution.
  8. Identify the steps for plan preparation.
  9. Sequence the steps for plan preparation.
  10. Identify administrative actions that should be performed before implementing your solution.
  11. Complete the Distance phase of the 3DThinking™ process.

Discovering the 3D Opportunities: Amount of Time Required: 1 - 2 hours

  1. Identify the steps to ensure that a solution is implemented correctly.
  2. Sequence the steps to ensure that a solution is implemented correctly.
  3. Implementation of the innovative solution.
  4. Determine ways to make a solution profitable.
  5. Select the guidelines for communicating "shifts" to the organization.
  6. Communicate "shifts" to business associated affected by a solution.
  7. Identify the components of the third phase of the problem-solving process.
  8. Identify the components to include in problem-solving documentation.
  9. Complete a 3DThinking™ action plan.
  10. Complete the Determination phase of the 3DThinking™ process.

3DThinking takes practice. Go over the slides. Find problems to solve that are NOT critical to your business or personal life. Just like any skill you must practice. Solve problems. Break them down into components then use each of the various methods to add, subtract, multiple, divide the components to see what can be done with them to reach different results.

Envision Your Future to Achieve Your Goals

Imagine that a simple technique you have used all your adult life will help you to find effective solutions to your most complicated business problems. Picture yourself using a mental image to create solutions that work. By approaching problems with this new method, you can take control of the various challenges life presents and influence the outcome in a positive way.

         What is this technique? Actually, you have just used it. It is called visualization, and successful people worldwide use it every day to achieve their goals.

We often refer to a person who sees things that don’t exist as crazy or weird. But what do you call a person who sees things that don’t exist…YET?  We all know of people who “see” a vision of something that hasn’t happened or doesn’t exist yet, who then work to make it happen – we call them visionaries. 

  • Jules Verne was a visionary author who wrote in detail about travel to the moon and exploration of the oceans before people had the ability to do these things. Although he hardly made enough money to pay for the paper he wrote upon, his ideas influenced others to pursue his visions.
  • When Walt Disney looked at an uninhabited swamp in Florida, what he saw was a giant amusement park, which would eventually become Disney World
  • And then there’s the college dropout who envisioned the most popular operating system for computers. He was a computer nerd who is now worth billions. We’re speaking of Bill Gates, of course.

         These people learned that the solution lies within the problem they are trying to solve, and they use visualization to arrive at the answer. You, too, can produce positive results through innovative problem solving, such as increased company profits, new products and services to market, and innovative ways to attract new customers. With visualization, you’ll find your solutions by carefully analyzing the components that make up the problem, rather than looking to outside sources for solutions. The good news is that we all have the ability to be visionary.

Here’s how:

Remember the Future

         You can use the techniques of the visionary by applying the same process you use when you remember something.

When you remember, you are recalling images, smells, textures, sounds, and feelings. In your mind, it is as if these events were really happening again.

Think how many organizational fires you could put out if, instead of just recalling the past, you could remember the future – things that haven't happened yet – and then plan for them. Actually, many of us do this already; we call it “worry.” When we worry, we imagine all sorts of bad things will occur. Often, we can see these imagined events clearly taking place, and then we see all the terrible side effects. But worry is a complete waste of your imagination. As Mark Twain said, “Most of my life’s worst experiences never actually happened.”

Create an Image

A variation of remembering is imaging. This is when we use our imagination to plan effectively for reality and to help produce positive results for our future. You may have noticed that many athletes talk about “visualizing” their event.         Long before the actual competition, they imagine the event in complete detail and “see” themselves winning their event.

Olympic athletes use this technique all the time. For example, great runners picture themselves at the starting line. They hear the starter’s gun and see themselves coming up out of the starting blocks. They feel the track beneath their feet, hear the roar of the crowd, and see the finish line ahead of them. Finally, they picture themselves breaking the tape with joy and triumph as their fellow athletes congratulate them. When you create an image of what you want to happen, you will naturally follow it, whether that image is of you closing the deal, buying that new business, or advancing up the corporate ladder. Remember, the body believes what the mind conceives.

Pressure to grow the business, increase shareholder value, and create competitive advantages requires innovative thinking. Principles that were good in the past may not be applicable in the future. Get proactive in your business by dedicating yourself to problem solving.

How you think is everything, so focus your thoughts on success and innovation. Rather than follow the tried and true, break away and find a new and more effective way to do something. Evaluate the past and use it to build on the future. New approaches may require an emphasis on service, to bring the fresh ideas to your clients. Review Past Failures.

Understand your company’s “pain” and find the cure. You must understand failure and learn from it. As you evaluate the failures from the past, remember that successful companies combine an immense drive for profit and an indomitable spirit with exceptional intuition learned from their own failures as well as those of others. 

Have a Plan for Change

As you anticipate the competition of the future, complex issues will arise. These are urgent questions of strategic importance that cut across multiple goal or planning areas. They address key questions the organization must answer…

illuminating choices your business will have to make and the challenges it will need to overcome in moving toward the Envisioned Future. (Use your KnowBrainer)

Be Different: Lead Your Company to Success

Businesses that aren’t growing or are having profitability or client service problems have ignored the signals that point to change. Great leaders embrace change because they see opportunities instead of problems. Learn to think like a leader, and then follow through on your ideas. To fully embrace change you must first study it to understand it, and then have the courage to act.

When you follow these principles as demonstrated by successful leaders, you will rise above the competition and learn to lead your company to success. For the committed leaders who take the high road and stay true to their goals and ideals, success is the ultimate reward.

Plan Your Path

How can you turn your remembrance or your mental image into reality? Simply imagine the end result first, and then work backwards to create the path to get there though visualization. For example, if your end result is to increase company profits by 50%, envision yourself already at that goal, and then see the steps you took to get there. Maybe it involved an innovative marketing campaign, adding staff, improving quality, or reducing overhead expenses. When we can picture our future the way we want it to be, we open up great possibilities for ourselves that we never before imagined. So if you can visualize the future, you can formulate the steps to get yourself there.

Visualize Your Future Today

Visualizing is a learned skill that can help you accomplish what you want in your life. You can also use it to prepare to deal with problems if and when they arise, which are more constructive than simply worrying.

So invent your own future today, as many successful people before you have done. 

Decide what you want, then use visualization to achieve actualization.  In your mind’s eye, turn your daydreams into concrete goals for your business and your life.

If you can imagine success, then you can use this image of success as a starting point and develop a specific plan of action to attain your goals. It’s your future, so go out and create it. 


3D THINKCheck List

Use this to reinforce the 3D THINKING process when you come up against a problem that needs solving or an opportunity that comes to you “out of the blue” Use additional paper if you require it. Do not limit your thinking to the space provided. Once outside the box you can think outside the box. Expand your thoughts, fill the page and more.

Defining the problem: Amount of Time Required: 0.5 - 1 hour


  1. Identify the components of the problem.
  2. Understand how to utilize the components in the solution  of the problem-solving process.
  3. Define the problem in the most concise and focused    manner.
  4. Select the components of an information collection plan.
  5. Learn how to collect information.
  6. Identify the characteristics of an innovative solution.
  7. Complete the Depth phase of the 3DThinking™ process.
  9. Use the KnowBrainer. Use it often. Get to the point where       you use it for EVERY PROBLEM
  10. Call me with any questions.
  11. Email me @jfeldman@shifthappens.com

Originally published on by SpeakerMatch Speakers Bureau