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How you can revive a business which is lacking in creativity

Gi Fernando

Apprentices with a bright idea

Gi Fernando, engineer, maker, entrepreneur and founder of Freeformers, a digital transformation with a unique ‘one_for1’ initiative, training a young person for free for every business person trained

On the ever shifting sands of today’s world of lightning speed development, that which is impossible today will be accessible and affordable by tomorrow. This concept, also known as Moores Law, is encapsulated perfectly by the Smartphone – these devices we hold in our hands, which 10 years ago were beyond the wildest dreams of the most fanciful techie, are now the property of all and the tools with which we have the power to disrupt and innovate the world we live in.

Over the last 10 years humans have excelled in designing products and services which innovate, inspire and improve the world, and this revolution is only just beginning. The internet of things is coming, along with a world which meets our needs before we even recognise them. But as we develop the capacity to excel in the creation of products and services, are we neglecting the need for our businesses themselves to excel in creativity too?

It can be hard to see how an enterprise built on traditional paradigms can keep up with the plethora of creative industries and tech companies who weave innovation into the fabric of their business models. You can write off creativity as the preserve of the elites, artists, and start-ups, and settle back into the traditional structures that you know and have worked thus far. But every human – no matter what industry they find themselves in - has the potential to create, and failing to channel this capacity in your workforce means you fail to develop your business, you fail to get the most out of your staff, and you fail to increase your bottom line.

Human capacity is perhaps the world’s most underutilized resource – and the forgotten secret ingredient to revitalising the creativity of an organisation. Economists and innovators are beginning to recognise creativity as the new economy. This doesn’t mean that creative industries will take over – in reality they represent a reasonably small proportion of the overall economy – it means that capitalising on human potential and harnessing it to revolutionise your business is the new model for business excellence. We’re not in an information economy, a knowledge economy or a post-industrial economy anymore. The 21st century is the age of the creative economy.

Over the next few years computers will begin to outperform people in areas reliant on processing, and these roles – and therefore these staff members - will become superfluous. To create value, people need to learn to solve new problems, not to optimise processes. Challenge staff to find solutions to problems that they care about, and creativity will abound in your organisation.

Interestingly, the solutions people find to issues in their personal lives are likely to be utilizing their full creative capacities – and are also likely to be applicable in the workplace. Transferring these skills can free your staff from the confines of unimaginative systems and processes and allow them to bring their passions and personal expertise into the workplace. In doing so you will breed innovation, and establish the same formula which defines a successful start-up, in which professional and personal passions align and staff will achieve a return on headspace through the streamlining of energy.

We must move away from the idea of hierarchy when it comes to creativity. Traditional models where power and information are maintained by SMT are smashed to pieces by the concept of creativity, which is democratic and can realign social and business archetypes. For a company to survive in a world that moves in high-speed around it, the creativity of everyone, from the bottom to the top, must be engaged.

We find ourselves in one of the most exciting moments for human development and enterprise. An intelligent world awaits us where our innovations improve humanity, but failing to embrace innovation will see you left behind. Reviving creativity in your business couldn’t be more simple – look no further than the people within it.

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