What’s creative thinking got to do with business?

Have you been going over the same problem again and again with no solution? Or is your Creative thinking leads to successgoal to create a more innovative organization? Well then it’s time to form a new habit. The habit of creative thinking.

Everyone is born creative. We just lose the capacity to tap into this skill when we “grow up”. As we learn more linear thinking skills, our spontaneous creativity of childhood gets pushed aside.

Conformity becomes the rule in the game of success. Figure out what you need to do to jump through a particular hoop – jump – tick the box on your checklist – move on to the next box. You know the routine.

I say it’s time to get out of that box. Free yourself by becoming more creative. And I’m talking about everyone, no matter what they do in life and work (after all, creativity is not just for artists or marketers).

Michael Michalko, author of Creative Thinkering, describes creative thinkers as follows:

  • Have the intention to create, act, speak in positive & joyful way;
  • Look at what is and what can be instead of what is not;
  • Instead of excluding possibilities, creators consider all possibilities, both real and imagined;
  • Interpret experiences for themselves rather than limit by interpretations of past thinkers;
  • Learn how to look at things in different ways and use different ways of thinking;
  • Are creative because they believe they are creative and have the intention to create.

When we are thinking creatively, we can focus on what results we want – instead of being stuck in the quicksand of problems. This approach is open-ended and fueled by possibility.

Creativity is key to business success. Change is constant. If an organization keeps a fixed mindset, with fixed teams and fixed processes in fixed environments – all trapped up in a box – how can it expect to meet the changing needs of their clients? Or, to stay competitive with other organizations who are investing in creative thinking and innovation?

What’s that saying – about insanity being the act of doing the same thing over and over, yet expecting different results??

“Act like a kid again” is the advice that Hal Gregersen, INSEAD professor and co-author of the book The Innovator’s DNA, gives to people who want to be more innovative.

Gregersen led a six year study focused on individual creativity in the business context. 3000 executives in the world’s most innovative and successful organizations participated. As a result, the authors identified five key skills that turn problems into opportunities through innovation.

“A critical insight from our research is that one’s ability to generate innovative ideas is not merely a function of the mind, but also a function of behaviors. This is good news for us all because it means that if we change our behaviors, we can improve our creative impact.”

So, we can learn to be more creative – more innovative. That’s critical, because according to the results of a 2010 IBM study of conversations with more than 1500 CEO’s worldwide, creativity is identified as the single most important leadership competency for organizations seeking to survive and thrive in the increasing complexity and competition of our global economy.

Need to improve creative thinking? It takes courage and commitment to change your habits and increase skill. But you can do it. And if you find during this process that you need help, why not sign up for our Creative Thinking Training.


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