Creative ability in business is key to adapting, changing and succeeding in the new and faster business world we live in now. As a leader, this is one more area where you must blaze the path. Traditional management hierarchies can get in the way of growth. Major transformations can fail when pushed through using antiquated ideas and techniques. There may be a new and better way to do things - you just need to find it.
Take a look at some of the biggest company names in the news today. Apple. Facebook. Amazon. Kickstarter. They are being talked about because they have innovative products or they do things in new and exciting ways. In short, they are creative.
Now you may think that you are not creative. The thought of having an original idea or having to make something out of nothing is extremely intimidating. But as a leader, you do not have to be the one to do it. You can enable someone on your team or in your organization to do it instead.
Ask for ideas. Create brainstorming teams. Listen to conversations among your employees and see what they are thinking. Many great ideas happen over donuts, water coolers and company activities. Recently, large companies like Yahoo and Best Buy have limited their work from home programs in an effort to stimulate creativity in the workplace again. Those leaders know that they are missing out on the original thoughts that happen over cubicle walls and that flow from conversations between well-rounded team members with varying gifts and viewpoints.
Leaders do not have to be the best at every skill or task charged to their team, department or area. Real leaders recognize that every team member has a strength that complements the weakness in another. Having a realist in the group can help keep the dreamer from floating away. Yet without the dreamer, the realist may drag everyone down into a hole. Your job as the leader is to manage the strengths and weaknesses of your team to the benefit of the organization. Creativity is just one more strength or weakness to incorporate into the team dynamic.
Facebook was created in a dorm room. Apple in a garage. Kickstarter was the brainchild of film makers who could not get funding through traditional channels. Innovation is not a learned skill but an encountered one. Make the opportunities for your team to risk just such an encounter. Your organization may be able to get to the next height because of it.
If you've enjoyed this article on creative ability in business you'll enjoy our creative innovation hub.
Creative ability in business is a brilliant topic, we've used a case study to outline the innovation of Apple inc in another article. You may want to look at that article for a more in depth view of innovation through creativity.