Successful entrepreneurs possess multiple skills that enable them to take ideas and turn them into successful business ventures. Some of these skills will be innate, while others will be learned and honed throughout a career. Of this vast array of skills, creativity is arguably one of the most challenging to achieve. The PDF attachment looks at the definition of creativity and innovation in business.

Business creativity goes beyond simply coming up with original ideas – it is also about developing the instinctual behaviours that can bring these ideas to fruition while allowing you to stay ahead of the competition. To watch some of my videos about business, visit the Ahmed Dahab YouTube page.

Plan Vs. Vision

A good, creative entrepreneur is adaptable and able to see when and how things need changing, no matter how good the original idea happens to be. This is where having both a plan and a vision comes into play. A vision is the long-term objective or goal of the business, based on projections about how the initial idea can be produced and marketed. The overall vision may not change, or at least may not change much, throughout the lifecycle of the company. However, it will evolve and grow as the company evolves and grows.

A plan can change week by week, yet the entrepreneur will likely be able to maintain a certain element of control over what goes into the plan and how successful it is. Plans focus more on the short-term objectives required to get to the next stage, and therefore need to be more focused. Each weekly plan will aim to improve on the previous week and bring in new ideas and information on a regular basis, which will in turn contribute to the evolution of the overall vision.

Applying Creative Thinking

Whether starting a new business, growing an existing company, or revolutionising a product line, creative thinking is essential at every stage. There are two types of thinking that together result in creativity: convergent and divergent. Convergent thinking seeks to find the single best solution to any one particular problem. Divergent thinking is more about brainstorming, finding as many potential solutions as possible to the current problem, and then eliminating them one by one as new patterns and connections begin to emerge.

Bringing these two types of thinking together results in creativity. Lateral thinking is also highly creative – a definition of this can be found in the embedded short video.

Physical Environment

When creativity is stalling, often a simple change in physical environment can be enough motivation for the brain to start churning out new ideas. These changes can be physical, such as moving to a different room, office or space, or other elements of the environment can be changed. This could involve reducing the noise levels or increasing ventilation. Taking regular walks can also help to boost creativity – researchers from Stanford have proven that walking increases creative thinking by as much as 60%, with this inspiration continuing even once the walk has finished and you have returned to your office.

Collaboration

Collaboration is a great way to bring fresh perspectives to the table and enhance creativity. Sometimes the best partnerships are not those where each member agrees, but where there is disagreement and strife. This can in turn lead to the formulation of ideas that may never otherwise have come into play.

The infographic attachment looks at some of the other key characteristics shared by some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs.