Creativity is a skill that every individual regardless of their line of business or area of specialization needs to develop and build in themselves. And this is because many of the best inventions and achievements are born out of creativity. For you to make the change from being just regular to being spectacular, from being good to being great, you need creativity.
Whether you are in the music, art, commerce, business, or finance industry, you need to work on building your creativity.
As a matter of fact, it doesn’t matter what your line of business is, your talent, or what you do, you need creativity to stand out and be successful.
For example, as a business owner, there are times when you are faced with the decision of making needed changes in your business.
It might be that you have certain products/services that need development and improvements.
This might be a decision necessitated by a change in marketing trends and/or demands from your customer base.
At such times, you need to build creativity to enable you to make such changes and make them effective.
Also, you might also need creativity when it comes to developing effective solutions to business problems and challenges.
One important area of this where creativity is necessary is when working to increase sales or build your business customer base.
Given how stiff the competition is in this area, you would need to be creative in solving problems for your customers.
If you only do what is the obtainable norm in the industry or what you’re used to, there is a slim chance of getting great success out of it.
Hence, it is obvious that creativity is a necessary skill to have regardless of your line of business or industry you belong to.
How to Build Creativity – What is Creativity?
Before we proceed on just why building creativity is important for you as a businessman and how to go about it, let us understand what creativity is.
Put simply, creativity means being able to come up with your own unique ideas and applying this to a particular situation to get results.
Creativity goes through the process of thinking, exploring, imagining, and at the same time discovering.
The good thing about creativity is that the skill is unique to almost every individual, and it is one that everyone can build with the right approach and focus.
That is why creativity should not be confused with talent but rather seen as a skill that can be developed with practice and action.
In children, creativity is often developed by them taking the action, most times not even sure of the process or the final results.
However, with their experiences, they are able to come up with creative results which they learn and develop from.
As adults, we can equally follow the same process in building our creativity.
In a bid to build creativity, it is important to note that this process primarily involves coming up with something that is new and also useful.
That is why in being creative, the idea generation process is just a step, while the application is also an important step to follow.
The ability to turn the new and imaginative idea into reality is true creativity.
How to Build Creativity – Why Building Creativity is Important
As an entrepreneur, it is easy to feel comfortable with your present position and what you are able to accomplish.
Such a level of comfortability might make you unaware of the need to build your creativity.
However, being uncreative or having poor creativity has it’s negative effects on you as an individual and your business.
Here are some of the benefits that come with being creative for you as an entrepreneur:
It Helps you Develop Your Problem Solving Skills
As an entrepreneur, one of the skills you need to develop to make a success of your role is problem-solving skills.
This is because encountering problems and challenges in your line of business at some point is inevitable.
When that happens, you have the responsibility of coming up with a working solution that gets you out of the hole.
Most times, we tend to take the easiest route or fall back to experience in solving such problems.
While this might work sometimes, it is not always effective.
Additionally, you can come up with better solutions to the problem when you are creative.
Hence, creativity is needed to effectively cope with certain problems or difficulties you would encounter in your business.
Creativity Can Be a Source of Motivation
A lack of motivation remains one of the common challenges that every business owner or entrepreneur faces.
Most likely you also suffer from this at some point while going about your daily work activities.
When this happens, being creative can help you get your spirits lifted and inspired.
When you build your creativity, you tend to see more fun things to do when you get discouraged or lose morale.
Hence, instead of simply sulking in that state, you are able to engage in more fun and interesting activities.
Even in the current tasks where you are losing motivation, you might start seeing different details that would motivate you.
Also, you can come up with unique methods or approaches to that project or task and find your motivation to pull it through.
It Helps to Build Innovation
Without a doubt, creativity is the mother of all innovation.
As an entrepreneur, if you want to be more innovative, whether in developing new products/services or features, you need to build your creativity.
It is in the creative process, either the thought process or action phase, that innovative ideas come up.
That means if you do not build creativity, you are most likely going to be stuck in a place for a long time.
You might be doing things the way it has been done for many years, even if the current circumstances demand otherwise.
And if you are not being innovative, it would be hard to keep pace with other industry leaders and beat your competition.
However, when you build up your creativity, you are open to seeing more opportunities open to you and take them.
And that is how you come up with innovative ideas and results.
Building Creativity Helps Develop your Confidence/Self-Esteem
Being creative often involves taking risks.
This is because when you flex your creative muscles, you are unsure of what the results would be more often than not.
There is always a chance that the creative idea or action you take would not work out as expected.
However, trying out new things and seeing how they turn out is one way in which confidence is built.
When you embark on creative endeavours and you see how well they turn out, it helps you increase and develop your confidence.
Even when you know that failure is a possibility, that realization builds up your confidence.
Hence, you are more willing to leave your comfort zone and try out more new things, which is a confidence booster.
Creativity Helps You See Beyond the Obvious
When faced with projects to execute and decisions to make, it is often common to be short-sighted and only see what’s in front of us.
As an entrepreneur whose interest is growing the business and increasing sales, you need to see beyond the obvious.
And that is where creativity comes in.
When you build creativity, you tend to see the bigger picture in everything.
While someone who is not creative would only see what lies on the surface, you on the other hand would dig deeper and see beyond that.
And that in turn would give you an edge in your choices and decision making, which are essential to success.
Creativity Increase Productivity
When you build your creativity, you are putting your brain to work in essence.
Someone who is creative generally have more to offer and contribute than one who is not.
You will find that when your creativity is low, you tend to be unproductive.
If you meet with difficulties or barriers while at your work or executing a project, it is difficult to move forward.
On the other hand, when you build your creativity, you bring have more to bring to the table.
Your productivity and efficiency would in essence increase when you also get more creative.
Creativity is a Stress Reliever
When you get creative, you are expending time and energy doing something you love.
This might involve using your hands or more importantly your mind in coming up with creative ideas.
This meditative process on its own soothes the mind and creates the feeling of happiness and contentment.
Of course, every endeavor that adds to our joy and counts as fun for us improves the quality of our lives and relieves us of stress.
You no doubt would benefit from this stress relief as an entrepreneur, and that is one thing building creativity does for you.
How to Build Creativity – Practical Steps to Take
As earlier said, creativity should not be confused with a talent whereby one might feel that he/she does not have it inherent.
Being creative is a skill that everyone has the potential for, regardless of what your area of interest or specialization is.
Therefore, if you want to build creativity especially when at work, follow these practical steps:
Do The Things You Love
One of the very first steps to building creativity is doing something you love.
Creativity involves putting your whole mind in motion and engaging your inner self to breed innovative ideas.
That can only happen when you are investing in activities and projects that interest you and you love.
As an example, if you do not love cooking, it would be difficult to try and build creativity in cooking.
This is because, for one thing, you would spend less time carrying out that activity which in this case is cooking.
And when you spend little to no time in an activity, there is little chance of getting creative in it.
The same applies to building creativity as an entrepreneur.
An integral part of the process is doing something you love and are passionate about.
Also, when you struggle with creativity at work, it is good to engage in an activity or hobby that interests you.
This would help you to relieve your stress and relax, which in turn would boost your creativity.
Work on Becoming an Expert in your Field
Whatever field or industry you are currently, one way you can build creativity there is being an expert.
Settling with mediocrity in your knowledge scope in your field would not help your cause in building creativity.
One of the ways to easily build creativity in an area is to widen your knowledge scope.
When you have a good understanding of what you do, it becomes easier to think of innovative ideas and solutions to problems.
Therefore, while you are thinking about building your creativity, it is also good to focus on increasing your knowledge in your field.
When you become an expert in your field, creativity becomes easier.
When You Are Stuck, Take a Walk
Sometimes, your struggle with creativity might be at particular moments when you are working on tasks or completing a project.
If that happens, it helps to take a walk.
Studies have shown that people are generally more creative when they are taking a walk than when sitting idle in a place.
Going for a walk can improve your thinking ability and make you more creative.
Therefore, if you sometimes feel stuck for ideas sitting on your desk with projects before you, you can decide to take a short walk.
It could even be that some side attractions that you see along your way would be the ignition that your creativity needs.
Be a Risk-Taker
Another very integral process to building creativity is taking risks.
In short, if you cannot take risks, it would be very difficult for you to come up with creative ideas.
Granted, not all the risks you take would end up being the best decision and some might not end the way you wish.
However, that is also a learning process that is needed in developing your creativity.
When you take calculated risks, you are able to exercise your creative muscles and build them.
And even when you get the wrong results, you learn from the experience and use that knowledge for good in the future.
How to Build Creativity – Collaborate
Sometimes, you tend to be more creative not in isolation but from active collaboration and communication with others.
Like the old saying goes: “no one is an island of knowledge”.
Hence, when it comes to coming up with creative and innovative ideas, there is just so much you can do on your own.
However, when you collaborate more with others, you are open to new information and improved understanding of things you know.
You can read books written by others, or speak to experts in your industry and other industries.
The knowledge you gain from these ones can open up your mind to see things you wouldn’t have on your own.
And that in turn can help you in building your creativity.
Develop Self Confidence and Avoid Self Criticism
One of the barriers to building creativity is having self-doubts or self-limiting beliefs.
When you have a habit of criticizing yourself or saying you are not good enough, it becomes hard to come up with creative ideas.
Instead, you should practice self-affirmations and build your self-confidence.
One way you can do this is to constantly review the progress you have made and note them down.
Also, take out time to commend yourself for how far you’ve come.
When you do these, it gives you a feeling that you are enough and have all it takes to come up with creative ideas.
And that is a very important step in building your creativity.
Work on your Office Space
As basic as it might sound, your work environment has a large effect on your creativity.
Sometimes, it might be that the reason you are struggling with getting creative is because your workspace is not in good shape.
If you do not have a well-arranged and clean desk, you could be faced with distractions at work and hence it shuts out creativity.
It could also be the designs around the office area such as the pictures and colors that are affecting your creativity.
Hence, it is good to identify the setting and items that inspires you and make you more creative, and set up your workspace with such.
Doing this would mean surrounding yourself with inspiration which would in turn help build you creativity.
Always Seek Out Different Options/Solutions
There is more than one option or solution to a problem or decision you need to take.
Hence, when working on a task or a project, avoid the temptation of quickly going with the first idea or option that comes to mind.
Instead, train your mind to openly explore multiple options and ideas.
It is during the process of doing this that you are training your creative muscles, and building your creativity.
Put Yourself in Challenging Situations
You will be doing your creativity no good if you always seek the easiest way out and do not challenge yourself.
The way to build your creativity is to put yourself in challenging situations and seek creative ways to get out of it.
In a similar vein, do not be quick to apply the same solutions you’ve used in the past to problems, even if they are similar.
Instead, challenge yourself to seek out new ways or approaches to different situations and watch your creativity grow.
Deliberately Invest in Pursuing Seemingly Terrible Ideas
What is the first approach you take when you have an idea in your mind that seems terribly impossible?
Most likely, you are quick to kick out such ideas and stop yourself from entertaining them.
However, if you want to flex your creative muscles and build your creativity, you should be doing the opposite.
Consciously list out all the terrible ideas you can think of and start looking out for what is good about them, no matter how small it is.
During this process, you are training your mind to come up with creative ideas and solutions.
Being able to come up with good features for terrible ideas can give you the inspiration you need to build your creativity for the excellent ideas you have.
Final Thoughts – How to Build Creativity
Creativity is very necessary for all aspects of life, especially for someone who is a business owner or entrepreneur.
It would help you build innovative ideas, develop your products and services and also increase your productivity.
Also, when you work on building your creativity and see the positive results that come with it, it can boost your self-confidence.
Hence, work on building your creativity following all the steps listed above.
Your creative self and business would thank you for it.