Thanks to Stacey Miller for pointing to this great marketing article by Dan Tudor. It's an excellent example of how important it is to think about taking the task at hand to the next level. In this case, Dan notes how a marketer took a different approach in solving a problem, the result of which generated far more revenue than the traditional approach.
I see two interesting points in Dan's article. First, it shows how the development of e-content can and should be thought of differently than print content. He takes advantage of the platform by incorporating links to the various author products, generating additional revenue in the process. I'm much more likely to click on a live link in a PDF, for example, than I am to type in the full url that I just saw in a magazine, book, etc. It's simply more convenient and I'm probably already online, so why not take advantage of this in an e-doc?
Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, when I stepped back for a moment I found myself thinking about how this applies to just about everything. Seeing how someone else solves a problem often inspires me to think differently. For better or worse, I bring a set of assumptions to the table they may not have. I'm also guilty of accepting the status quo and not asking "why do we do it this way?" often enough. How about you?