This is how Moonshot Thinking can be done in your organization

This is how Moonshot Thinking can be done in your organization

Let’s explore some frameworks.

According to Astro Teller, Captain of Moonshots at Google X, improving 10x is often easier than improving 10%. In essence, that’s the underlying principle of Google’s Moonshot Thinking strategy. A moonshot is a project where the goal is not to create a 10% improvement but to focus on a solution that brings 10 times the improvements or completely solves a problem. Radical new and innovative solutions are thought of and explored using breakthrough technology.

Moonshot thinking is the opposite of many innovation frameworks currently in use, which are built on small incremental changes. Moonshots live in the gray area between audacious projects and pure science fiction. They are always 10x better, not 10%. Google is leading the 10x movement. 

Leaps of innovation require a bravery that borders on absurdity

Astro Teller Captain of Moonshots, Google X

Close the connectivity gap
A very recent example of a moonshot project is ‘Project Loon’. This project entails an innovative way of spreading the internet. Instead of using ground structures, the Loon project uses different balloons that float high above us. These balloons can spread internet connections that, for example, people in rural areas can use. Also, in the event of a natural disaster, access to the internet can be offered quickly. In July this year, the balloons were tested in Kenya, marking a new step in development and further implementation and a new step in developing solutions to close the connectivity gap.

So how can Moonshot Thinking be implemented in your organization? The Singularity University has an interesting framework to guide you through the process:

  1. Moonshot Mentality. Use new mental frameworks to start thinking exponentially and embrace change. Change what will be possible into what could be possible. Celebrate failure.

  2. Moonshot Launch. Hack your organization by ‘unlearning’ what you are currently doing and ‘relearning’ what needs to be done to innovate fast. Let’s start bottom-up. How many ideas can be collected?

  3. Moonshot Landing. Learn how to implement new ideas and unlock full human potential in your organization. See what works and what doesn’t.

  4. Transform Yourself. Embrace a potential culture shift. Is your knowledge, attitude, and behavior supporting the change? Do you encourage failure?

  5. Transform your Company. Who is making decisions? Listen to the lab coats, not the suits. Ask lab coats to produce prototypes, not slideware.

Five principles
According to Peter Diamandis, five easily implementable principles can help your organization transition to a Moonshot-ready state: first, you hire people in their twenties to do ‘some digging’. You encourage colleagues to question everything and everyone and as a result generate ideas without limitations. You catalog, prioritize, and select these ideas and fund the best ideas and teams.

Despite there not being one definitive answer to implementing moonshot thinking in your company, this article provides some frameworks to build on. Remember that the most important thing is to be open to change and accept the fact that not every idea is going to work in practice. For more information regarding Moonshot Thinking and what can be achieved, take a look at the website of Google X.