What Is Creativity?
Many people think that creativity is reserved for special people and that it’s something you’re either born with or you’re not. But, the truth is, creativity is something every single human being is has at their fingertips, automatically. It can be developed, controlled and managed.
The dictionary defines creativity as “… a phenomenon whereby something new and valuable is created.”
This definition does not impose any ideas about what is good creativity or what is bad creativity. Instead, it shows that anything that you produce – whether it’s an idea, an invention, or an artistic work – can be classified as creative as long as you produce something. That’s why it’s not impossible to become creative in business.
In truth, business defines creativity. All creativity really is, is the ability to copy ideas, transform ideas, and then combine the ideas with other ideas to create something new. Every time someone creates something, the potential exists for someone else to take that idea, add to it, turn it upside down, or tear it apart and create something else out of that original thing.
Since creativity is something that is innate and already exists, the only thing left to do with creativity is to foster it and allow it to expand and manifest itself. In business, you can become more creative by creating a purpose, building skills, acquiring more knowledge and taking risks. You can learn how to manage yourself and others enough to explore creativity fully by taking action on the things that you learn, or giving others the freedom to take action.
Once you learn to harness creativity, you can see that it has a few common elements – regardless of where the creativity is taking place.
- Brainstorming ideas
- Looking at things in a new way
- Discovering patterns and relationships
- Finding the problems
- Developing a solution
- Connecting the solution to the right audience
- Developing a plan of action
- Following through to completion
This is true whether you’re writing a book, painting a painting or creating a spreadsheet about how many widgets your company sold during sweeps week. There are really only two processes involved in creativity even though all these steps are listed. It’s so simplistic that it might scare you. The two processes are:
Without both of these steps, you don’t have creativity. If you spend a lot of time developing ideas but not producing the ideas, you are dreaming. That’s the first process of creativity, but it isn’t creativity. True creativity requires a resulting idea to come into its final form. It has to be something you can see, hear, smell, taste or touch. If it doesn’t come to that final conclusion, it’s not yet a creation.
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