CREATIVITY AND INNOVATION
HOW CREATIVE ARE YOU?
Business and industry are stepping up
their search for the Creative Person
helping organizations and agencies
find imaginative people.
corporate concern is both urgent and practical.
and women with the knack for
finding new solutions.
instrument contains several examples of creativity
tests now being used. One example is shown below.
Tell whether you like or dislike each of the following drawings (L for like and D for dislike).
These types of tests have proved helpful in
identifying IBM engineers and scientists rated
as more creative.
engineering, scientific, and managerial
is also being
Electric, Lever Brothers, Dow Chemical, and
several other firms.
Highly creative individuals tend to
describe themselves by these adjectives:
, independent, inventive,
enthusiastic, individualistic, industrious,
absentminded, versatile, daring, dynamic,
informal, impulsive, excitable, self
unassuming, worrying, thorough, sensitive,
restless, reflective, preoccupied, moody.
In one study with writers, mathematicians,
architects, research scientists, and engineers
at the Institute of Personality Assessment and
Research; the adjectives that the more
creative individuals checked as descriptive of
them, show that they have
Yet, contrasting, they also checked more
unfavorable adjectives than did their less
In Dr. MacKinnon's words
"One finds in these contrasting self
descriptions a hint of one of
the most significant characteristics of the creative
He says that it is not physical courage, though a highly creative
person may have courage of this kind too.
is rather personal courage of the mind that often makes a
person stand aside from society and in conflict with it
"It is the courage to be oneself in the fullest sense, to grow in
great measure into the person one is capable of becoming."
Now take the creativity drawing test passed
out to you.
the goal is to be creative. You
have 15 minutes to complete the 9 drawings.
The following answers would
, candy cane, flower,
, flower, face/person,
, clouds, tree
pyramid, kite, star
Flower, rain/tear drops,
figure eight race track
, wheels on
something, dice, stop light,
Buildings, piano keys
Can creativity be learned
A study by George Land
are naturally creative
as we grow
we are trained to
Creativity is a skill that can be developed and a
process that can be managed.
to be creative is
to learning a
sport. It requires practice to develop the right
muscles, and a supportive environment in
which to flourish.
leaders are increasingly adopting the
principles and practices of art and design to
help build creative muscle in their
can help organizations manage
the innovation process and overcome some of
the barriers that prevent leaders from being
Art and design processes
help people develop
fresh thinking through aesthetic ways of knowing,
imagination, intuition, re
framing and exploring
also help people learn to be
comfortable with uncertainty, vagueness, and
shows that everyone has
The average adult thinks of 3
6 alternatives for
any given situation. The average child thinks of
the more diverse
the training is, the greater
Beliefs that only special, talented people are
and you have to be born that way
diminish our confidence in our creative abilities
The notion that geniuses such as Shakespeare,
Picasso and Mozart were `gifted' is a myth,
according to a study at Exeter University
Researchers examined outstanding
performances in the arts, mathematics and
sports, to find out if “the widespread belief that
to reach high levels of ability a person must
possess an innate potential called talent.”
The study concludes that
• AND MOST OF ALL
early signs of promise prior
to parental encouragement.”
one reached high levels of achievement in
their field without devoting thousands of hours
of serious training.
trained for 16 years before he produced
an acknowledged master work.
many high performers achieve levels of
excellence today that match the capabilities of a
So, how can we improve our creativity
: Being creative or artistic doesn’t
mean you know how to draw or how to play an
a way of
to music by Johann Sebastian Bach. Classical
music makes sense, is organized and promotes creativity.
2. Brainstorm. If properly carried out, brainstorming can help you not
only come up with sacks full of new ideas, but can help you decide
which is best.
f you're stuck for an idea, open a dictionary, randomly
select a word and then try to
formulate ideas incorporating
. The concept is based on a simple but little known
truth: freedom inhibits creativity. There are nothing like
restrictions to get you thinking.
4. Define your problem. Grab a sheet of paper, electronic
notebook, computer or whatever you use to make notes, and
define your problem in detail
. You'll probably find ideas
positively spewing out once you've done this.
5. If you can't think, go for a walk. A change
of atmosphere is good for you and gentle
exercise helps shake up the brain cells
6. Don't watch TV.
watching TV causes
your brain to slowly
trickle out your ears
and/or nose. It's not
pretty, but it happens.
7. Don't do drugs. People on drugs think they
are creative. To everyone else, they seem like
people on drugs.
8. Read as much as you can about everything
possible. Books exercise your brain, provide
inspiration and fill you with information that
allows you to make creative connections
9. Exercise your brain. Brains, like bodies, need exercise to
If you don't exercise your brain, it will get flabby and useless.
Exercise your brain by reading a lot (see above), talking to
clever people and disagreeing with people
arguing can be a
terrific way to give your brain cells a workout. But note,
arguing about politics or film directors is good for you;
bickering over who should clean the dishes is not.
10. If you are struck by an idea, quickly write it down.
Upon rereading your notes, you may discover about
90% of your ideas are draft. Don't worry, that's
What's important are the 10% that are
brilliant. The best answers tend to be at the end of