Why does this bicycle box have a picture of a flat screen TV?
It’s a fantastic example of an extremely simple solution to a complex problem from Adam Alter’s excellent book “Anatomy of a Breakthrough”.
In 2015, Dutch bicycle company VanMoof had a problem. When they shipped their expensive bicycles to the USA, a lot of them were showing up damaged.
They tried all the obvious approaches to solve the problem… better packaging… tougher boxes… different shipping partners. Nothing worked.
Then they reframed the questions… are there any there any examples of cardboard boxes that don’t get damaged?
The answer: Flat Screen TVs.
So VanMoof tried putting an image of a flat screen TV on every box. Overnight, shipping damage fell by 80%.
The lesson? Find the friction points in your process, and brainstorm solutions multiple different angles and contexts. You’ll be much more likely to come up with a breakthrough idea.