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The library of essays of Proakatemia

The spectrum of creativity

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Out of Our Minds: The Power of Being Creative
The Human Edge: How curiosity and creativity are your superpowers in the digital economy
Greg Orme
Ken Robinsson
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                                               THE SPECTRUM OF CREATIVITY


Creativity is a gift. That’s what most of us might think. We assume that creative people like artists or successful businessmen or women were born directing movies or establishing billion euros worth companies, we think that we are not lucky enough to have the artistic ability. Truth is: we are all capable of being highly creative, it takes many forms, some of us are creative by solving a basic Excel sheet problem and some are developing a new health product.

Whether it’s at school or at a traditional office job, we are taught and prepared to solve tasks and obey orders, to apply systems and to learn content unthinkingly, and yet we still question why many of us think they’re uncreative drudges. Well, part of the problem is that we aren’t taught to be creative. But it’s never too late to change even after years of being put back into line.


While we look at the number of college graduates entering the job market throughout the past 30 years, it is clear that it has doubled, but it doesn’t mean they are ready for the demands of the current job market. Nowadays, the education system, especially in high schools tends to focus on subjects that come in standardized tests, the emphasis on arts and creativity is noticeably low, and this of course leads to the maldevelopment of a person’s sense of self-expression and creativity including those hoping to have a successful career in the future where self-expression and creativity are crucial skills.

In a 2010 study conducted by researchers at IBM, the world’s top business and private sector leaders were asked to name the most important leadership quality, and they all had the same reply: creativity. Each one believed that this trait would help their organization succeed in the unpredictable future.


When we look at humans and animals, we think that we walk on two feet and that’s what differentiates us, but what truly sets us apart and defines human nature is the incomparable scope of our imagination.

Imagination does allow us to see way beyond what’s happening In the present moment only, it goes way even further than just our immediate environment. In reality, it is what we use to consider things that we have yet to experience, to revisit. And analyze the past, to improve our understanding of the present by seeing through other people’s eyes and to help shape the future by anticipating the various possible outcomes.

And actually, the more that you think about it, the clearer it gets that it is the source of our unlimited creativity skills. Easy: think of creativity as taking imagination one step further and putting it to work, as applied imagination.

When we are being creative, we’re coming up with original ideas that have value, and we are willing to do something with those ideas. It doesn’t have to be in the service of the arts, either. It can be in business. Creativity can make use of a physical medium like food; or a sensory medium, like the voice; It’s also about asking new questions that help to push us towards new directions or to bring together different ideas that were never previously connected.

There are two general big steps to the creative process.

  • First generating new ideas
  • Then evaluating those ideas in order to elaborate upon, refine or reject them.

Not all creative ideas can be immediately accepted or celebrated. There are countless artists, innovators and famous businesswomen whose ideas were initially received with ridicule or scorn. Some died penniless and unappreciated, and it would take later generations to rediscover their ideas and recognize their worth.


Innovation happens when we are able to put an original creative idea into practice. This generally happens when a new product is created or a new service or system is introduced. Of course it may sound straightforward, yet many business leaders run into two misconceptions when attempting to promote innovation.

First of all, they fear that the responsibility for coming up with new ideas will fall on them alone. However, the main role of a creative leader is to nurture and facilitate an environment where others can be creative.

The other misconception is that a creative environment is one where they must let go of all control and embrace chaos. But this isn’t the case either, in fact, creativity and innovation thrive when there’s a comfortable balance between experimentation and traditional supervision.

When business leaders fear creativity, they’re usually beholden to the kind of traditional workplace structures that date back to 1900, when Frederick Taylor’s The Principles of Scientific Management was published. This was a popular guidebook for the Industrial Revolution, as it described how a human workforce could operate with machine-like efficiency to maximize productivity and profit. But it’s important to remember that the industrial-revolution model is a thing of the past and has no purpose in serving for creativity these days.

Today, innovative leaders need to be flexible to build a creative environment. This is the only way to handle the current rapid changes in the business field, as well as in financial policies, and competition.

Being flexible should extend throughout the company and be encouraged by the structure of the business itself, from the everyday work patterns of the team members to the physical structures of the workspaces.


The Human Edge: How curiosity and creativity are your superpowers in the digital economy. G. Orme. FT Press; 1st edition. December 5, 2019.

Out of Our Minds: The Power of Being Creative. K. Robinson. Hardcover – November 13, 2017. ‎Capstone; 3rd edition.

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