Creativity has been defined by Webster as “the ability to make new things or think of new ideas”. We have often been asked in our interviews how creatively can you solve this problem? Have you ever wondered why they ask this question? I often wonder why we are asked this question since i am pretty bad at coming up with creative ideas, but now i have come to realise its importance. What do you think will happen if an organisation hires people low on creativity will there be any growth in the organisation, all the people will come up with the same ideas and after point these ideas will become redundant leading to the decline of the organisation.
How creativity is conceptualised and the potential of creativity varies from people to people.Some people are highly creative while others are not. The field in which they express creativity may also differ, some may display their creativity in dance, while others may display it in music. People who do inventions are also called creative, coming up with a novel solution to a problem also implies creativity. When we think of creativity people such as Thomas Alva Edison, Henry Ford, Dhirubhai Ambani come to our mind. I have seen people often making this mistake of correlating intelligence with creativity. They believe that people who are more intelligent are likely to be more creative. However researches have shown that isn’t true.
Lewis Terman(1920s), found that persons with high intelligence were not necessarily creative. At the same time, creative ideas could come from persons who did not have a very high IQ. Although the relationship is positive between these two constructs, i.e., all creative acts require some minimum ability to acquire knowledge and capacity to comprehend, retain, and retrieve. Tests to assess creativity have been developed by eminent psychologists which enable us to assess the creativity levels of individuals easily which can be used for screening and recruitment purposes.
Development of Creativity
Researches done on creativity have shown that creativity is partly determined by heredity factors and partly by environmental factors. The environment determines the development of creativity, with the help of motivation, commitment, and family environment that is conducive. However there are certain things that we can follow that would enable us to enhance our creative potential. These are as follows:
- Reconceptualising the problem: Whenever stuck try reconceptualising the problem to come up with a creative ideas. Rather than thinking in one direction we should try to see the problem in another light which would enable us to come up with a creative idea.
- Stay Positive: Its essential that we stay positive whenever coming up with a creative idea. When we think negative we tend to often overlook the solution or think clearly and come up with a creative idea. Anything that enhances a persons positive mood is likely to enhance creativity, thus we should try to engage in activities such as exercising regularly, recalling good memories.
- Counterfactual Thinking: Counterfactual thinking refers to asking oneself the question “what could have been” A person should try to come up with alternate solutions to the problems solved earlier and then apply the same to different problems.
- Reinforcement: Though this technique doesn’t enable the initiation of development of creativity, it helps in maintaining the creativity levels. Rewarding your creativity levels also helps.
- Brainstorming: Brainstorming in the sense writing down all the ideas you can come up with on a piece of paper the number of ideas you can generate enhances the creativity levels.
- Risk-taker: Also a person should always be open to taking risks. A person who is a risk-taker is likely to be more creative, since he/she is likely to come up with more number of ideas. Take risks, make mistakes, learn from them and find a creative solution to them. This will also enhance your creativity.
- Embracing your originality: Its very important for us to embrace our originality. Whenever you come up with a new idea don’t ignore it, don’t think its stupid, rather embrace it and pay attention to your creativity.
Being creative is an important life hack we all need to adopt as it enables us to face the larger world more easily. I would like to conclude by quoting Albert Einstein who says:
“Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.”