Flip-Thinking = Innovation = Results

Educators around the globe have dominated the progressive development and use of “flip-thinking.” Some refer to it as “flip-teaching” yet I believe that term derived from the fact so many educators were starting to use the process, in a systemic manner. “Fisch Flip” is likely the most recognized related phrase among educators.

So, what is “flip-thinking?”

In a nutshell, it is reversing the usual sequence of things. Daniel Pink, one of the more recent writers on “flipping” stated:  “…That’s the power of flipping. It melts calcified thinking and leads to solutions that are simple to envision and to implement.”

Flipping can be used for so many things. Businesses have adopted it for conferences, seminars, how they run their day-to-day operations. As Jeff Hurt wrote on the topic, “Some in the publishing industry have flipped the traditional model. Instead of waiting for the hardcover to be published, authors have made eBooks available online.” Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos®, stood the typical business model on its head, using variations of “flip-thinking.” Some of us were using this strategy without even knowing there was a name for it. In the 1990s, I started using it and while doing so fell into the latter camp; not realizing there was a name for it.

“Flip-thinking,” sans the formal name, became one of my most prized habits. In fact, it was the catalyst behind this website.

As I gained knowledge in appraising, there were so many instances where we were being taught, “This is how it’s done.” Being an inquisitive person, eventually I would wonder if there was another way. I started “flip-thinking.”

Flip the issue, give it a firm shake, see what falls out, explore the pieces, and see how and why they fit.

We should dare to look at ways everyday things have been done and/or accepted and play with them.

It didn’t take me long to discover fee appraisers and tax appraisers viewed appraising in different ways. I took the tax appraisers way, noticed they were doing what they’d been taught, yet missing a very key element! It resulted in certain property types to be disproportionately appraised for taxation! This is unethical, illegal, and in violation of the United States Equal Protection Clause. Hence, the catalyst of this website.

Now it’s your turn. What are some ways you have used “flip-thinking” or know of it being used?


There are numerous names credited with developing the concept. These include Eric Mazur, Maureen Lage, Glenn Platt, Michael Treglia, J. Wesley Baker, Jonathan Bergmann, Aaron Sams, and most notably, Karl Fisch.