In this article, you will learn what creativity is, how it can help you run a small business, how it can manifest itself, and how to develop and practice it.
Creativity is often related to the broadly understood design and art, but more and more often it is talked discussed in a much wider context. Because, contrary to appearances, you don’t have to be a designer or artist to appreciate creativit thinking. Because it come in handy in many areas of life and is essential for effective problem solving. As you know, in business, challenges occur almost on every step. Creativity is a desirable trait of a small business owner.
Creativity is in our blood
Scientists assure us that almost all of us were once creative … until the education system and cultural conditioning made us get rid of it. Children at an early age are able to answer questions creatively, solve puzzles and find original solutions. Often without thinking about the consequences or critics. They have unlimited imagination, which could be useful to us later on too.
However, during the early years of education, this skill gradually declines. The education system does not focus on creativity and even approves of schematic thinking. No one could predict that a system, created in the 19th century to produce the workers of the industrial era, won’t be valid in times of that the rapid Internet and even faster flow of information. Today, in order to survive in a rapidly changing market, whether as an employee, employer, or a company owner, we have to face challenges that would be foreign to a 19th century capitalist.
So what is creativity?
According to the dictionary, creativity is the ability to create new original ideas, thoughts, or connections. This means that we don’t necessarily have to create something out of nothing, but it can manifest itself in finding a new use for existing tools, adding new functions to existing objects.
Creativity is difficult to measure. That is why many of us feel that their work or the way they do business is not creative. We mistakenly associate creativity only with industries like design or art.
However, a personal measure of creativity may be the evaluation of our activities within the company. Can we approach the problem from a new, unusual perspective? Create new ideas that serve the development of our company. Can we help our clients in a seemingly hopeless situation and develop and improve existing processes?
If you answered yes, welcome to the club of creative business owners.
Is creativity like a stone statue?
As I mentioned at the very beginning of this article, we are all born more or less creative, but few have managed to preserve it. Many of us are culturally and socially conditioned to put creativity aside.
As a person who has attended several art schools, I can say that even there, students are often put into certain thinking patterns.
The good news is that creativity can be exercised and developed. But the first important step is to just allow yourself to be creative. However, it may not be as simple as we think.
Schemes and ready-made solutions often seem to us more reliable, less risky. Other business owners who implemented them before us are proof. However, let’s not forget that the world is constantly changing. The change has accelerated in recent decades. Nothing is the same anymore. While blind faith in the old orders may seem like the right choice, pandemic time has proved that being creative and flexible can pay off more.
How to use creativity in small business
There are many situations in which practicing creativity is good for your business. Below you will find some of them.
Creating new source of revenue of the business
If you are serious about developing your business, generating ideas for new sources of income that will support your brand at the same time is a skill that cannot be overestimated.
Scale your business
Scaling a business is finding a way to make it more profitable without having to increase costs or spend more time on it. A good example of scaling a personal brand, for example, is to generate passive income. However, for this to happen, at least the initial phases of creating new services or products should be approached creatively.
Create new processes and improve existing ones
Regardless of whether you act solo or hire other people, efficient processes will allow you to solve problems faster, improve your customer relations and reduce the risk of errors and delays, which, as we know, can cost us nerves, and also money.
Company promotion and marketing
From brainstorming, target group identification, creation to implementation – at each stage, the ability to think creatively and solve problems will help you achieve a better result.
Acquiring new customers
How we acquire new contractors can benefit if we let creative thinking into the whole process. The right approach will allow us to look where others have not yet benefited and use tools that will effectively affect our recipient group.
How to exercise creativity
As I mentioned before, creativity can be exercised. We can do it every day and put it into our routine. We can set specific days for this and invite others to brainstorm. It all depends on … your creativity.
Sky is the limit
When you approach solving a problem, try to generate as many ideas as possible in the initial phase. Imagine that the impossible does not exist, no one can judge if your ideas seem stupid, and nothing will prevent their implementation. Write it down in your planner or on a piece of paper. In this case, the more the better. This exercise will allow you to open your head to new possibilities.
Have fun MacGyver style
Have you ever been able to see the reality around you from a completely different perspective? Look around, pick one item, and imagine that you have to find a completely different function for it. What could a pen be used for if we didn’t have to write with it. What would someone living in the 16th century do with a telephone?
Art isn’t that bad – try collage
While there are many great artists who create miracles out of paper, this technique is also great for those who would like to live their lives artistically without understanding anatomy or perspective.