Picture the following scenario. You ask your friend to come up with a creative meal that will amaze your guests at a dinner party you are holding, but you impose some constraints. Your friend can only use the ingredients from a restrictive list and must follow the specific directions from a meal you cooked these same guests just weeks earlier.
What are the odds that your friend makes something innovative? Not good. After all, you’ve practically defined the solution by specifying nearly all of its inputs before she can even consider what she might cook.
A far better way to generate an innovative solution is to define the outcome you need — a five-course meal for eight — and then allow your friend to figure out the best way to get there.