WHICH CAME FIRST? The Chicken or the Egg?

The theme for the third quarter of 2018 for our Power Ideas is CREATIVITY AND INNOVATION. We all know that staying ahead of the curve in identifying new solutions to problems, and developing leading edge products and services depends heavily on all of our people being creative and innovative when focusing on challenges and opportunities that we all face in this fast-moving and dynamic business environment. Our founder and CEO, Jerry Houston, leads off this first article in the series on a very significant date. July 10, 2018 marks the start of our 28th year in business. On behalf of the entire team, Jerry wants to thank all of our clients, our trade partners and our team for all of the great years we have shared and we look forward to the coming year.

As I thought about this whole idea of Creativity and Innovation, I wondered whether you first have to be creative, in order to be innovative…or, do we need to be innovative to stir up our creativity?

That thinking led me to pondering the whole idea of creativity. Where does creativity come from? Are we born with it? Can anyone be creative? According to the world’s most creative thinker, Dr. Edward De Bono, the answer is ANYONE can be creative. It does take some effort to get out of the box and stimulate creative thinking. Try this exercise with your team:

The Sixty Second Exercise

Utilizing the attached list of 60 random words, get your team together and break into triads. Using a watch or clock that can count seconds, ask someone to state STOP as you look at your watch or clock. For example, they say STOP on second 22. Go to the 22nd word and assign that word to that triad. Proceed to the next triad and repeat the process.

Once each triad has selected a word, they should spend the next 10 minutes brainstorming every other word they can think of that relates to the word they started with.

Then each team has 15 minutes to develop a new product, never before invented based on one or more of the words from their brainstormed list.

You will be amazed at what they come up with. Honor every idea, no matter how weird!

In addition to the power of this simple exercise, the other single action that promotes creativity is having fun. How do we have fun, you ask?

Every human being has three defined ego states. Parent, Adult and Child. In the Parent ego state you hold factors such as nurturing, caring, directing, controlling and so on. The Adult ego state is the logical, reasonable, practical, sensible state, and finally, The Child ego state is where we are able to have fun, to be happy, to use our imaginations and to be creative (it also is the whining, it’s not my fault state!). Helping people to get into their CHILD helps them to be creative and to be more open in their thinking. Make sure you create an environment that promotes a little fun when you are going into discussions that require creativity and innovation.

We hope you enjoy the 60 second exercise (It takes about 30-45 minutes to play!), and help your team become more creative and innovative in the process.

So, which did come first, the Chicken or the Egg?