Such companies as Facebook, Google, Apple, Procter & Gamble and General Electric couldn’t sustain success without constant innovations.
It starts with a mindset of innovation. Creativity isn’t something that’s learned, but much more as a trait that is rediscovered. Most people are born creative. For example, look at children and notice how naturally they use their imaginations. But somewhere around our teenage years, we begin to suppress our creative instincts as we become more conscious of what other people think.
We learn to be more thoughtful and logical. This inclination becomes even more pronounced as we join organizations that favor critical thinking. As we become mature contributors to corporate culture, we are frequently rewarded for our logical abilities.
As a result, the only time we use our creative thinking skills is when we need it to breakthrough situations. Nevertheless, you cannot accomplish such innovations unless your company’s philosophy supports new ideas – even those that fail.
In “Reclaim Your Creative Confidence” (Harvard Business Review, December 2012), there are a few strategies that are suggested by Tom and David Kelley for reviving our inborn creative thinking abilities. The authors are the manager and founder, respectively, of an international design and innovation consultancy, called IDEO
They identified four common fears that will block our best ideas from coming to completion. These common fears are:
- The fear of the messy unknown
- The fear of being judged
- The fear of taking the first step
- The fear of losing control
These are all fears that we must face in order to move forward. What fears do you have that is stopping you from revitalizing your ingenious thinking?