“Creativity is not a child’s luxury; it’s a smart business strategy” – Ash Ambirge
Do you remember when you were a kid with endless creative energy, when even the dullest objects offered countless opportunities to play, discover and learn?
This often unwitting creative spark that characterises our early years is now becoming the most-wanted qualifications in today’s workplace. Even though creativity is neither an inborn gift nor has anything to do with IQ, it is getting harder to keep the spark alive as we grow up.
Companies are increasingly looking for creative thinkers in their never-ending thrive to smash the competition, push the boundaries of productivity and boost their innovation. Let me then share with you some tips and tricks to acquire, develop and maintain your creative thinking skills.
In my view, there are no courses, no trainings good enough to become a creative mastermind. It is all about a daily endeavour with simple actions that will unleash and nurture your creativity. Jolt your thinking! Follow these 5 golden rules: write, draw, dream, share & repeat.
“Eureka or wow” moments usually happen when you least expect them. A moment of pure genius that fades seconds after. It is, therefore, key to keep track of these and record them in whatever is close at hands, be it a notebook, or even on your smartphone. Don’t restrict yourself. Write all ideas that pop up in your minds; you may not know what they may turn into in the future.
Creativity is not only about words, it is also about sketches in their wider form, be it pictures, illustrations or drawings. Sketching boosts creativity.
In a TEDTalk (A Tales of creativity and Play, 2008), Tim Brown, CEO of the “innovation and design” firm IDEO and design-thinking guru, asked the audience to draw the person sat next to them in no more than 30 seconds. Once executed, the audience started to laugh and apologise for their masterpieces. As Tim Brown pointed out, it is all because of our fear of judgement, as people feel embarrassed by showing their ideas to people around them. But this is the very reason for creative thinking. Let it go. Sketch your ideas! Use every-day items and draw them to nurture your creativity.
(Link to Ted Talk video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AT66b7UA__M)
It is not about having your head in the clouds all day long. But dedicate some time every day to stop and disconnect from your routine and let your mind wander will actually enable you to train your imagination and further sharpen your power of observation which is crucial for creative thinking.
Even the most genius brains need to get their ideas confronted with others. Go beyond the formal brainstorming session and bounce your ideas with a mastermind group. A mastermind group is a group of individuals focused on one specific objective or challenge, who will encourage the others to follow their ideas.
According to Napoleon Hill, who wrote several books on mastermind groups, there are two prerequisites for successful mastermind groups:
- Friendly minds: people taking part in a mastermind group should not assume prime knowledge about you and your capabilities, but be solely and truly committed to help your ideas go through;
- Sharing minds: it is all about a collective sharing process: people should share best experiences and practices. This collected knowledge can be drawn anytime from any participants to advance their ideas.
Repeat these four actions daily and fire up your mastermind!
by Caroline Lefevre