Getting Creative to Generate Innovation

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As I design the new, highly interactive workshop on Getting Creative to Generate Innovation, I thought id’ share some insights to Jeff DeGraff pointed out in his book, Innovate You.

Believing we all can “creativize” – improve any area of your life – he believes that an innovation is any creative improvement. (My approach is slightly different – creativity helps you see things in new and different ways; innovation occurs when you channel that thought into a commercializable process.)

One technique people use to get creative is built around the letter R – to Rethink what you’re doing/seeing and to Replace, Redesign, Reorder, etc. the elements. DeGraff recommends that Rethink:

  1. Innovation: What is possible? Look outside the box; seek out diverse opinions, identify the next great trend.
  2. Your Approach  – We all have different innovation styles; recognize yours and try another.
  3. Your Methods – Put plans in motion: set specific, realistic and meaningful targets; cultivate relationships with relevant mentors/experts: try alternate ways to achieve goals.
  4. The Journey – Innovation is a process, with progress coming in cycles rather than a quick straight line. Accept uncertainty, challenge assumptions and identify areas where you can improve.

DeGraff believes that all of us have one of four different styles toward being innovative, either by intention or in reaction to a crisis: They are:

  1. Collaborate – Connect with others, nurture a community based on trust, commitment and lasting relationships
  2. Compete – Commit time & resources to overcome obstacles because the world is full of winners and losers and competition is exhilarating.
  3. Create – Consider what ifs…
  4. Control – Cut waste, be more efficient and systematic and take control of the environment.

Curious about which is your profile? What’s the style of the people around you?

Visit and take the assessments. Then, rethink what could be changed to become even more creative and innovative.  Share your experiences with us! tie.