The importance of creativity and innovation is essential for any type of business to thrive. Creativity is the ability to solve challenges or problems with original innovative solutions.
Shawn Hunter, author of ‘Out Think: How Innovative Leaders Drive Exceptional Outcomes’ defines creativity as the capability of conceiving something original or unusual. He then describes innovation as the implementation or creation of something new that has realised value to others. Value can mean an array of things such as commercial and emotional value. Or it could be other values that may be hard to quantify from personal branding, reputation value, business reputation management and legacy.
Integrating Creativity and Innovation
Innovation is to turn imagination into reality. Our imagination is something that’s constantly cultivated because it’s where the growth arises. It’s what makes us feel alive and it keeps us energetic and purposeful. We believe this is important because it leads to more confident and autonomous problem-solving and thinking.
As talked about in ‘Why Creativity is Essential for Entrepreneurs’, we have the capacity to create without having any creative bent. Which means we have a creative energy, an aptitude of spirit inside of us to create whatever we choose. This means if you have a natural artistic talent or any other innovative bent, you can then be creative in creating products, services, and anything else you desire.
Innovation is typically a simpler challenge to complete once an idea is feasible. That’s where imagination emerges and where you will have to do all the other steps to get it into execution. It’s more than just critical thinking, it’s the process of turning ideas into reality, despite obstacles and resistance. However, creativity is identifying that something might be possible in the first place, and that’s the beauty of imagination. Innovation and creativity co-exist and without them we would never grow or evolve.
“To be successful we must live from our imaginations, not from our memories.”– Stephen Covey
Sharing Creative Knowledge and Experiences
The sharing of experiences is important because throughout our lives we’re going to get more people saying that something cannot be done. Compared to the small percentage of people that say it can be done. When we share stories with other imaginative and creative people, we are also sharing our fears, disappointments and experience of why something cannot be done.
For instance, Steve Jobs, has got a lot of life experience in the technology industry. Therefore you’re getting advice from somebody that’s been there, done that and has the runs on the board.
Creating and innovation are essential in business and both can generate income and profits once activated, according to branding experts. Ideas are only as good as the activation. If we’re interested in the product or service, we’ll most likely to purchase it again, and it will make a profit. This also includes social entrepreneurship. Steve Jobs, Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos are some examples of the great international innovators out there.
There are also a number of Australian innovators such as Melanie Perkins, Cliff Obrecht and Cameron Adams. They are great examples of real people who started from the bottom and now internationally well-known which is inspirational.
“Creativity involves breaking out of established patterns in order to look at things in a different way.”– Edward De Bono
Motivate Creativity and Innovation with an Inclusive Team Environment
Creativity and innovation should be a priority for your business to thrive. It’s about creating a ‘dare to create a culture’. This gives people permission to express their creative potential and to take advantage of that, in the sense of innovation.
Employees need to feel free to suggest, test and, if necessary, make mistakes. This means having expressive freedom as well. Creativity is not just doing things with your hands and thinking, it’s also about talking and sharing. As a business you want to give people the freedom to do this because without that you’re suppressing ideas and the innovation process, therefore, nothing happens.
Businesses must have flexibility here to give people a go and to trust the process. That doesn’t mean you’ll trust it without correcting it along the way and keep an eye on how things are operating but you’re also going to have to trust your team. I would then recommend looking at the opportunities for collaboration once the culture has been set up. Most of the greatest inventions, innovations, and creativity of all time, has been done in teams. Begin by collaborating with your work team and then expanding into external possibilities to open up opportunities. Push the limits of who and what you know, doing this acts as a fuel for creativity and innovation. Remember it is vital for business reputation management as well.
We’ve all heard the saying ‘two heads are better than one’, in this case, three heads are also better than one. The key with this is that they do have to be obviously the right hands. The sharing of ideas is where collaboration is encouraged this results in an integrated team and brainstorming sessions that result with action. One plus one does not equal two anymore, it equals infinity, that’s the power of collaborations.
“The things we fear most in organisations–fluctuations, disturbances, imbalances–are the primary sources of creativity.”– Margaret J. Wheatley
The bottom line
Finally, regarding resources, remember that ideas are only born and take shape when resources are available, including time, tools, and support. All of those are really forms of energy, therefore if you haven’t got the resources available, it’s a lot harder, so it’s also about how to allocate resources and make it a profitable exercise in all aspects.
To summarise, we’re living in times of constant change and this is not going to stop. It’s putting a lot of pressure and stress on people and it’s creating a lot of uncertainty in our environment, including communities and businesses.
So there’s a lot happening in the world today but you’ve got a choice to choose to say, I’m not going to suffer and make a decision that I’m going to start creating and if you need help, we can help you with that.
Companies that fail to stimulating creativity, lose valuable space to competition because they don’t see trends and could be regressing. Innovation leads companies to prominent positions in the market; it is the key to their competitiveness. You’ve got to think differently. This is an embodied experience that you’ve got to practise in action. Remember to give yourself permission to dare to create, but also, it’s okay to fail occasionally. As long as we grow from that and at the same time evolve with ourselves and our business.
Innovation and creativity is a subject that we’re passionate about, truly believe in and practice as much as possible. We recommend that you might want to consider this for yourself.
More Information on Creativity and Innovation
For more, I recommend you listen to previous podcast episodes such as ‘Why Change and Adaptability are Essentials Life Skills for the New World‘ and ‘Innovate or Die’. I’m sure these episodes will give you some insights and you may pick up some information you might have missed before.
I want to invite you to come on board and send an email for any questions you might have.
I hope this blog helped you get more clarity on the importance of creativity and innovation for businesses.
My Twitter is Jon_Michail, my LinkedIn is Jon Michail, and you can find us as Image Group International on Facebook. As always, I thank you for your time, and I look forward to chatting with you next time.
Jon Michail, Image Consultant | Personal Branding Coach | Business and Personal Branding Strategist | Author | Group CEO and Founder, Image Group International |
Image Group International are Entrepreneurial Activists. Rebels With a Cause!
Jon Michail, Founder and award-winning Chief Image-maker together with his team at Image Group International, helps executives and entrepreneurs to build, grow, and monetise their personal brands (online and offline). They help their clients by positioning them to stand out so they attract their ideal clients. They’re committed to maximising an individual’s personal impact, influence, and value in the ever-changing and disruptive business environment.
Image Group International is recognised as Australasia’s leading personal brand image advisory, with over 33 years of proven results.