Creativity and Innovation Management: The Creative State

Creativity can be defined as problem identification and idea generation whilst innovation can be defined as idea selection, development and commercialisation.

There are other useful definitions in this field, for example, creativity can be defined as consisting of a number of ideas, a number of diverse ideas and a number of novel ideas.

There are distinct processes that enhance problem identification and idea generation and, similarly, distinct processes that enhance idea selection, development and commercialisation. Whilst there is no sure fire route to commercial success, these processes improve the probability that good ideas will be generated and selected and that investment in developing and commercialising those ideas will not be wasted.

The Creative State

Often the creative state is described in almost "spiritual" terms. However, these analysis are misleading and do not help to make creativity tangible, measurable and useable.

The creative state is the result of a combination of factors:

a) The creative state is actually a problem solving state. It is identifying a problem and solving it. It is moving from an original state to a goal state.

b) The creative state is actually an idea generating state. This state is a creative thinking state as opposed to a critical thinking state. Ideas are expressed without evaluation. As large a number of ideas is produced, as large a number of novel ideas is produced as possible and as large a number of diverse ideas is produced as possible. The production of ideas without seeming relevance or direction encapsulates the concept of lateral thinking.

c) The creative state is actually an unblocked state. Most blocks are the result of some sort of evaluation apprehension ? when these have been removed, the "feeling" of flow becomes more apparent.

d) The creative state is actually a competent state. It is where a high level of competency has been attained in the endeavour. Along with competency comes confidence.

These topics are covered in depth in the MBA dissertation on Managing Creativity & Innovation, which can be purchased (along with a Creativity and Innovation DIY Audit, Good Idea Generator Software and Power Point Presentation) from

You can also receive a regular, free newsletter by entering your email address at this site.

You are free to reproduce this article as long as no changes are made and the author's name and site URL are retained.

Kal Bishop MBA, is a management consultant based in London, UK. He has consulted in the visual media and software industries and for clients such as Toshiba and Transport for London. He has led Improv, creativity and innovation workshops, exhibited artwork in San Francisco, Los Angeles and London and written a number of screenplays. He is a passionate traveller. He can be reached on

home | site map
© 2005