Creativity can be a difficult skill to cultivate, but one that can by crucial to advancing your career. Everyone is creative in varying degrees, but what is particularly useful in the business world is cultivating a sort of creativity that people find valuable. Here are four activities you can engage in that will help you become more creative.
Meet new people.
Meeting new people exposes you to new ideas and new ways of thinking. Even if you don’t agree with a new acquaintance’s view on things, the exposure to differing viewpoints can help percolate new ideas. An excellent book to help you with this might be Do What You Are: Discover the Perfect Career for You Through the Secrets of Personality Type by Paul D. Tieger and Barbara Barron-Tieger.
Aside from the fact that going new places can help you meet new people, exposure to new places can be a great booster for your creativity. Immersing yourself in a different environment can help you begin to think a completely different way. Vacations to foreign locales can be great for this type of creative immersion, but if that’s not in your budget, then trips to local museums, events, and festivals can all be great, too. If you’re looking for places to go, there are even books out there to help you decide on the best places for improving your business creativity. Check out Borrowing Brilliance: The Six Steps to Business Innovation by Building on the Ideas of Others by David Kord Murray.
Pick up random words.
Open the dictionary and randomly select a word – then challenge yourself to tie a new idea to that word. If you’re a writer, that might just mean molding the next plot twist or piece of dialogue around that word. If you’re an entrepreneur, that might mean trying to create a different business model relating to that concept. If you’re a netrepreneur, that might mean creating a new marketing campaign utilizing that concept. As far as books that will help you with this – check out The Oxford Dictionary! Even if you don’t get any valuable new ideas, at least you’ll sound smarter!
SCAMPER is a brainstorming acronym coined by Alex Osborne in his 1942 book, How to Think Up. With SCAMPER, the idea is that you ask yourself, “What can I substitute? Combine? Adapt? Magnify? Put to other uses? Eliminate? Reverse?” Asking these questions will force you to think about existing situations in new ways.