Have you ever thought of building creativity in your workplace, or that you could impress your customers with innovative products or services, whilst your competitors merely follow the same old beaten path? To do this aka tackle blockages, you must first understand what creative thinking entails and how it drives us to innovation.
Often, our inner creativity does not happen in a bubble. Things would be easier if it did. Some people struggle with being able to generate new ideas while others seem to experience creativity blocks from time to time.
If you fall into any of these two categories, fret not. There are some ways which you can use to tap into creative thinking and come up with a new perspective to identifying the blockages and enablers in your business.
The same old same old conventional methods that work today might not work tomorrow, that is why creative thinking is needed for businesses to stay agile and drive innovation to generate business turnover.
How To Identify Blockages
Creative thinking encourages you to identify blockages or obstacles in business so that you can find fresh perspectives and come up with innovative solutions. In fact, most people perform these two common activities to identify obstacles and come up with creative solutions – writing a blockage statement and diving below the surface.
Write a blockage statement
This is a frequently used method: you write a blockage statement and derive a timely action to improve the situation. This statement serves as a little mind map; explaining the blockages that arise between the functional process to the manufacturing of the product. A good blockage statement should consist of these 5 elements:
- Explain the state of blockage
- Describe how things should work
- Explain the financial cost
- Propose a solution
- Explain the blockage’s financial cost.
When these 5 elements are in use, it helps to break down the blockage into workable stages for easier problem solving and the solution naturally becomes transparent. “If I were given one hour to save the planet, I would spend 59 minutes defining the problem and one minute resolving it” ~ Albert Einstein. The probability of identifying more blockages and generating multiple solutions is higher when you write a good blockage statement.
Dive below the surface
Inventor and founder of Dyson® vacuum cleaners, James Dyson, did exactly the same on finding novel ways to solve blockages – he dived below the surface. Sure, some people stumble on the blocks, but when James Dyson had exactly the same blocks, he used creative thinking to find the answer. He focused on diving below the surface and developing a better vacuum cleaner filter; that is why we have the world’s first bagless vacuum cleaner today!
Although many major blockages were encountered during the development of a bagless vacuum cleaner, these are considered the keys to improving your products and services. It also inspires you and your organisation to excel. Diving deeper to understand the underlying problem, this will help generate innovative solutions that work when ‘above the surface’ brainstorming has failed.
How To Identify Enablers
How well can we define solutions at the workplace? And what makes the solution a creative one? A solution is an action or process of solving a problem. However, when the solution is seen as a means to improve rather than end the situation, that is when creative thinking kicks into action.
When creative thinking is combined with problem solving skills, it helps to navigate and “light up” the way from problem definition to solution implementation using imaginative and innovative approaches. This renewed perspective sees the challenge from a different angle and turns it into a solution. Two important keys to identifying enablers are by widening your focus and analyzing future developments.
Widen the focus
During this phase, clarify the problems and gather perspectives and unbiased input as much as possible. The concept of multiple perspectives is important as it encompasses heterogenous viewpoints. That being said, a more creative and integrated approach will be suitable; one that takes the roles and goals of all key people into consideration.
At times, it can be tempting to consider solutions that have been used before, as the human mind tends to turn to habitual and conventional thinking patterns that stop a person from widening his/ her focus. However, this is a chance for creative juices to flow and develop critical problem solving skills!
Analyze future developments
A person with creativity thinking will go beyond conventional approaches to tackle the workflow problems. Guidance will also be given to employees to implement and resolve the problems with fast turnaround time. For businesses to stay on top of the game, it is recommended to conduct a thorough analysis based on past and current trends and patterns so that future projected forecasts of solutions can be made with the various possible scenarios.
A regular review of questions like “What are the future paths for the company?” and “What are the effects of each path?” proved to be critical for business success. Creative business leaders ask themselves these questions on a constant basis to keep and fine tune their creative thinking skills.
In summary, businesses need to encourage creativity from top down, inspiring employees to innovation; thereby boosting not only their productivity but also business turnover. When challenges arise, identifying blockages and enablers becomes easier as everyone is motivated to work towards the same goals and that is to improve the current processes, products and/ or services.
Do you wish to know how to identify blockages and enable your organization to tackle problems with creative thinking? Write to us at email@example.com
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