Many years ago, I was told about a brainstorming exercise a group of linemen were asked to do in order to come up with a better way to keep ice from freezing on lines, increasing the weight and causing them to snap. The best procedure at that time involved having linemen climb up to shake the wires so they'd flex and the ice would break free -- very labor-intensive.
After a period of more serious conversation, one of the linemen bought out the story of how he'd once been chased up an electric pole by a bear. From there, the conversation went roughly:
"Hey, train bears to climb up and shake the wires."
"How are you going to keep them motivated?"
"Oh, that's easy -- put a bowl of honey at the top of each pole."
"How would you keep those bowls filled? If you run a pipe for the honey, you now have to worry about it freezing."
"OK, so we'll fill the bowls from a helicopter."
"But the downdraft from the chopper will blow the bowls off the poles."
"Hey, wait a moment, guys -- wouldn't the downdraft from a helicopter also shake the wires? Has anyone tried that?"
Turned out that was, indeed, the new solution to the problem -- fly a helicopter down the length of the transmission line and the ice falls right off as it passes over. Saved the company a bundle and earned the team a bonus.