Just as entrepreneurs can cultivate an environment of creativity in their organizations by using the techniques described above, they can enhance their own creativity by using the following techniques.
ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE CREATIvE
As we have seen, one of the big- gest obstacles to creativity occurs when a person believes that he or she is not creative. Giving yourself the permission to be creative is the first step toward establishing a pattern of creative thinking. Refuse to give in to the temptation to ignore ideas simply because you fear that someone else may consider them “stupid.” When it comes to creativity, there are no stupid ideas!
CreativeindividualstakeacuefromCaptainJack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean series of movies. When faced with a difficult (sometimes impossible) situation, Sparrow (played by Johnny Depp) usually operates outside the rules and, as a result, comes up with innovative solutions. “[Sparrow] creates new degrees of freedom that enable him to act in ways that someone encumbered by the rules cannot,” says one writer. “In that space outside the rules are some pretty interesting solutions.”
GIvE YOUR MInD FRESH InpUT EvERY DAY
To be creative, your mind needs stimulation. Do something different each day—listen to a new radio station, take a walk through a park or a shop- ping center, or pick up a magazine you never read.
Visiting other countries (even other states) is a creativity stimulant. Travelers see new concepts and engage in new experiences that can spark creative ideas. Eric Olson and Al Boyce, both beer aficionados from St. Paul, Minnesota, saw their first PedalPub, a unique bar on wheels that seats up to 14 people and, like a bicycle, is powered by pedaling, in Amsterdam, Netherlands.
OBSERvE THE pRODUCTS AnD SERvICES OF OTHER COMpAnIES, ESpECIALLY THOSE In COM- pLETELY DIFFEREnT MARkETS
Creative entrepreneurs often borrow ideas from companies that are in businesses totally unrelated to their own. One day as Tariq and Kamran Farid were thinking about ways to increase sales at their flower shop, the brothers came up with the creative idea of combining fresh fruits, such as melons, strawberries, pineapples, and others, into artistic, floral-like arrangements.
RECOGnIzE THE CREATIvE pOWER OF MISTAkES AnD ACCIDEnTS
Innovations sometimes are the result of serendipity, finding something while looking for something else, and sometimes they arise as a result of mistakes or accidents. Creative people recognize that even their errors may lead to new ideas, products, and services.
nOTICE WHAT IS MISSInG
Some times entrepreneurs spot viable business opportunities by noticing something, often very practical and simple, that is missing. The first step is to determine whether a market for the missing product or service actually exists (perhaps the reason it does not exist is that there is not market potential), which is one of the objectives of building a business plan.
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