Embracing Positive Ambiguity


Any act of creative discovery needs a structured process that allows you to develop, hold and then explore multiple, competing thoughts. But too often, we limit ourselves by putting the answer into the question.

Real breakthrough comes from a mindset free of judgement, fear and prejudice. One that gives you the room to learn, discover and adapt before trying to define the solution. It requires a form of positive ambiguity - a vital ingredient in Design Thinking.

As one of Australia's founding innovation consultancies, we’ve undertaken a pioneering research project to unpack the attitudinal frameworks that support successful innovation, in particular into this area of ‘Positive Ambiguity’ as a key driver of innovation discovery and the design thinking process.

After conducting interviews with a cross-section of 50 of Australia’s most innovative companies, we have entered the quantitative stage of our research study in partnership with Dr Joel Pearson and the UNSW Science of Innovation Lab.


Get Involved


We’d love to hear from individuals and companies interested in taking part in this next stage of research or receiving further updates as our insights progress. Register your interest below or get in touch with the team directly via cindy.tan@howtoimpact.com


In The News



4 Principles to Help Unlock Positive Ambiguity in Your Organisation Now


1. Embrace Complexity

You have to play with uncertainty, learn from it… but then you have to stop and say that based on your assumptions this is the best you can do… and then test your assumptions going forward.
— Dr Peter Hayward, Swinburne University

2. Get Past the Data Paradox

Most decisions should probably be made with somewhere around 70% of the information you wish you had. If you wait for 90%, in most cases, you’re probably being slow.
— Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon

3. Be Problem-Centric

One of hardest things about working with start-ups is convincing them how much uncertainty still exists in their plans… It’s our job to make you stop, hit rewind, go back with us to really clarify the problem you’re solving.
— Alan Jones, Startup Advisor, BlueChilli

4. Reframe Failure

Everyone hates the word ‘failure’, so we reframe it as ‘learning’. What really works is the scientific language of experimentation and the language of the business model canvas.