I saw this video the other day while searching for drum solos. It's sort of long and rambly, but he addresses some points in here that I think are important for planners and anyone in general who does creative things.
- Technique doesn't equal interesting—Knowing the technical aspects of creativity are not a means to an end, but tools with which to express your personal point of view. Being good at research doesn't make someone a good planner. Knowing how to flawlessly play modal scales on guitar doesn't make you a guitar player that people want to hear. It's only when you plus-up technique with an interesting point of view that you get to an interesting place.
- Talent Imitates, Genius Steals (hi Faris)—It's really easy for creative people to single out their heros and try to get good at doing things they way their hero does. The problem is that some people take it too far, and start to become clones. A few years ago in Virginia, there was an awful plague of drummers who were doing their best to sound like Carter Beauford from the Dave Matthews Band. Some of them were great at imitating him, but no one mistook them for being great drummers because they had nothing to add to the conversation besides the imperfections that come from not actually being Carter. It's his personality combined with his technique that made him interesting.
The thing that makes creative thinking interesting is the individual's personality. Technique isn't an end unto itself. Russell is interesting because he's Russell. Gareth is interesting because he's Gareth. Faris is interesting because he's Faris. The ability to do the job as well as those guys is important, but I it's how you spin it all together to make it your own that really determines how good you are.
Zoso is a really great (if slightly overweight) Led Zepplin cover band, but they will never be rockstars.