Breaking Free from the Competitive Cycle: The Role of Creativity

Written by Posted On Tuesday, 21 November 2023 00:00

Creativity is a highly applicable character trait of those who find success and significance in the business world.

In light of this observation, the question of whether creativity can be taught naturally arises. While it’s true that, with sufficient determination, individuals can learn almost anything, teaching your team to think creatively in any industry is contingent upon the approach.

As an Anticipatory Leader, the concept of fostering creativity among your employees should manifest in proactively addressing challenges through innovative solutions. This involves the cultivation of intricate ideas, allowing for the creation of remedies well in advance of issues becoming disruptive.

Creativity in Its Most Basic Form

Many organizations are playing the competition game, copying ideas in an attempt to stay one step ahead and gain a small fraction of market share. This is a road riddled with friction and little payoff as each player struggles to move one space ahead. If this sounds exhausting, it’s because it is exhausting.

The solution is to break free from this relentless cycle and forge an entirely new path. To achieve this, it’s essential to keep your opportunity radar finely tuned, identifying areas ripe for innovation. At the core of innovation lies creativity, naturally driving the process.

Just as with anything in business, creativity is a process in which bits and pieces of ideas are taken, shaken up, and revealed to discover new uses for products or services, or most importantly, solutions to problems both current and in the future.

The leaders many look up to in society — those who bring about the most powerful, transformative innovations — begin with an insatiable thirst for knowledge and curiosity about the world around them. This allows them to conceptualize diverse and original ideas, often taught to them by predecessors in their industry. Yet while creativity is taking in all that you know and experience, innovation is the ability to evaluate those observations and develop them into usable solutions.

Case Study: Elderly Companionship and A.I.

For Anticipatory Leaders and Anticipatory Organizations, pre-solving problems is not a hard stop for creativity, because everything can be improved upon in life.

For instance, it is a Hard Trend future certainty that as the Baby Boomers are aging, more of the population than ever before is entering into elderhood, where their range of mobility, ability to functionally care for themselves and others, and companionship are all reduced. Using this Hard Trend as well as the fact that pets play a crucial role in the emotional fulfillment of all age groups, one organization saw an opportunity to apply a creative and exponential solution to the issue of companionship: Joy for All.

A while back, I wrote about this innovative product that debuted for elderly individuals. To summarize briefly, Joy for All is an organization that supplies animal companionship — in the form of robotic cats and dogs — to the elderly who wish for company but not the burden of feeding schedules and vet appointments. This gives older individuals all the emotional benefits of owning a pet.

Creative, right? But is this industry tapped out because of one innovative idea? Absolutely not. What a company like Joy for All should be doing is thinking creatively about their product 20, 30, or more years from now! How can they make these mechanical companions more lifelike, especially as Gen X, Millennials, and even Gen Z individuals age into the elderly demographic one day?

I can bet on the reality that artificial intelligence (A.I.) will most definitely accelerate, and that you may be able to have this robotic pet actually start to emulate the behaviors of a pet that can learn tricks, pick up on patterns of your or your loved ones’ behavior, and more. This is an evident solution to a problem that does not even exist yet, as younger generations are not in their elderly years.

The Layers of Creativity

Too often I hear higher-level managers, C-suite executives, and other business leaders state that they “are not creative,” or they equate creativity to being “artsy” alone.

Remember: Creativity can be learned and should be fostered within your Anticipatory Organization! Learning to be creative and thus innovative comes with understanding the following three steps:

Discovery — This is the lower level of creativity. Discovery is when you become aware of or stumble upon something. In essence, this can be when you find that a tool or process can be adapted into something else, just as an interesting rock goes from being “just a rock” to “art.”

Invention — The next level of creativity comes with the process of invention. All great inventions would have come to fruition by someone else if the known inventor hadn’t pulled it together themselves. The pieces to the next great invention already exist. You simply discover them and pull them together in a new way.

Creation — Here is the highest level of creativity. Now is when you actually put your stamp on something new or reinvent something that exists. The creation portion of fostering creativity is the process of tapping into where your innovation lies.

The goal is never to compete in a foot race against your competition. Likewise, it is certainly not to copy and follow the crowd to find the next big idea. The goal is to be the leading industry innovator that has staying power by leveraging creative thinking to innovate in everything your organization currently does and will do in the future.

This then unlocks your opportunity as an Anticipatory Organization that stays in the lead naturally.

Rate this item
(0 votes)
Daniel Burrus

Daniel Burrus is considered one of the World’s Leading Futurists on Global Trends and Disruptive Innovation. The New York Times has referred to him as one of the top three business gurus.

He is the CEO of Burrus Research, a research and consulting firm that monitors global advancements in technology driven trends to help clients profit from technological, social and business forces that are converging to create enormous, untapped opportunities.

He is a strategic advisor to executives from Fortune 500 companies, using his Anticipatory Business Model to develop game-changing strategies based on his proven methodologies for capitalizing on technology innovations and their future impact. He has delivered over 3,000 keynote speeches worldwide. 

He is the author of seven books, including The New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller Flash Foresight, and his latest best selling book The Anticipatory Organization, and he is a syndicated writer with millions of monthly readers on the topics of technology driven trends, disruptive innovation, and exponential change. 

Burrus is an innovative entrepreneur who has founded six businesses, four of which were U.S. national leaders in the first year.   His accurate predictions date back to the early 1980s where he became the first and only futurist to accurately identify the twenty exponential technologies that would become the driving force of business and economic growth for decades to come. Since then, he has continued to establish a worldwide reputation for his exceptional record of predicting the future of technology driven change and its direct impact on the business world.

Agent Resource

Limited time offer - 50% off - click here

Realty Times

From buying and selling advice for consumers to money-making tips for Agents, our content, updated daily, has made Realty Times® a must-read, and see, for anyone involved in Real Estate.