Science & Non-profit

Leap ahead of the rest / Innovations

A bit of creative chaos is a must

Someone, who can invent, can also innovate with ease. Someone, who can invent on a high level, can innovate and improve a company's product line to the next level in no time. My hottest invention, the New-CVT, was long considered to be the holy grail in mechanics and it is revolutionizing the car industry. It even includes a new type of gear that I invented (the multi-ratio gear). It is on a scale that even scares me.

Small things also matter. I regularly gave tips in a little local restaurant that I went to, and the owner now credits me with helping him create a fast growing and award-winning global restaurant chain. Admittedly I think it is all up to himself, and that at best I only helped him a very little bit, but I do really like how a few of my little creative insights seem to have gone so far.

So I can innovate almost anything and I like helping people. I irritate and appear arrogant to most, while I delight those who are kind. I strive to be kind myself and to respect the other's right to be different.

I have found that there is a big difference between the mindset of an engineer and that of a scientist. Engineers apply the knowledge that they were taught, while scientists question the knowledge that is being taught. A scientist wants to understand every aspect of something regardless of possible practical application or time limits, while an engineer brakes down an actual practical problem until every aspect of that problem falls within the scope of what they were taught. True engineers fit well within a company and its culture, while true scientists are seen as anarchists that refuse to follow the flow. Getting and staying ahead commercially often requires new knowledge, and for this the scientific mindset is indispensable.

Companies competing with each other all tend to do the same things and in the same ways. This is because they all employ the same kind of people. They are all doing everything right, so none of them ever gets ahead. Groupthink and hierarchy are toxic to those with extreme creative logic. So these people are hardly ever part of a company, and yet they are essential. It goes against instinct, but external help is how all the highflying companies bypass this problem and leapfrog the competition. As one said "They don't fit-in, but you go bust without them!".

Helping companies is great fun, both with innovations and with creative insights. Of course I want to get paid doing it, as it needs to be fair. But I judge all requests on the fun-factor as well as the payment offer. Unfortunately I don't have unlimited amounts of time. I can't even answer/read all my mail (sorry). So please use descriptive email subjects if you want to contact me.

I am very inquisitive and have a broad range of interests. I like taking on challenges that are a bit out of my field as this allows me to help people and learn new stuff. I don't do variants on existing designs, as engineers are better at this. Innovators and engineers have very different minds and each should do what they are best at. I see my task as giving the engineers the new knowledge that they need to become leading in their field. Engineers are implicitly taught that they have all the answers and groupthink within a company then enforces this belief into an ivory tower, while history clearly shows that the best innovations come from elsewhere. The education system best suits those who learn in an unquestioning knowledge absorbing way. While those with creativity and alternative ways of seeing things find that the education system fails them, so their paths to knowledge are often unexpected. Good engineers help the innovators to do their thing, and then take over once the innovator's work is done. The interaction between innovators and engineers is one of the best predictors of a company's success as it directly relates to the superiority of the product line.

I am Geert Poelman, a biologist, a Dutch national with English roots, born April 3 1966 in Groningen and based in Milan. I see true science and the academic ways as largely contradictive. I have been accused of being an old fashioned scientist, which makes no sense to me at all, as science is science. I combine the creative method of the arts with the scientific mindset of questing everything.

I have solved problems in the fields of biology, optics, mechanics, electronics and software. But please, don't limit your requests to only these subjects. I knew very little about mechanics until I invented the New-CVT, and I am now working on many more potentially interesting inventions in this field. By the way, I have no problem with, and in fact prefer, keeping the names of companies and problems solved secret.

After a project is selected, initial contact will be via Skype as this saves me a lot of time. I don't do social media as the messaging tends to be superficial and shallow. An email forces people to think and to clearly state what it is they want. This to saves me a lot of time. In case of big problems/innovations, relate payment to a percentage of the (predicted and/or actually realized (royalties)) value added to the company and with an initial additional set payment for considering the case in detail. I want aspirational companies willing to take big steps and with an interactive management style.