By: M.B.A Alexander Morales Heinen – CEO, POLSTAIF INNOVATION.
In order to describe what is innovation, I would like to start by defining what is CREATIVITY since it is a term that we hear continuously and that is occupied when identifying a Designer, Architect, Marketer, Filmmaker, Animator or even a Chef (just to describe few).
Well, CREATIVITY originates from “CREATE”which is the ACTION to develop something based on our capabilities. “OUR CAPABILITIES”implies being able to do them individually or in groups, as well as integrating the resources and context in which we find ourselves, so the scope of CREATION can vary depending on the time, place or technologies we have. CREATING is action, since creating involves effort, movement, thought, analysis, etc., however, it has not positioned us in any particular or special category.
When we express “What a high creative person” we are connecting with a POSITIVE CALIFICATIVE ADJECTIVE,but we also understand it as COMPARATIVE AND SUPERIORITY.For the foregoing, we endow the individual CREATOR; of a high concept in its ability to be able to develop something intelligently, positioning it in front of the client or receiver with a high and confident expectation of resolution.
“CREATIVITY” IS THEN THE ACTION OF DEVELOPING SOMETHING SMART AND BETTER,the next question to ask ourselves is: yes and how?
Where do I get CREATIVITY ?,I buy it at the supermarket ?, or commissioned by AMAZON? Here the challenge.
Norman W. Edmund defines some ways to get it in his book: “End the biggest educational and intellectual blunder in history” I transcribe that section:
Creative solutions-Use of imagination
“Creativity is usually described as taking two existing ideas and combining them into a new and better idea. It is also termed divergent thinking, lateral thinking, insight, intuition, flash of inspiration, innovation, ideation, guided design, generative thinking, productive thinking, etc. Successful people have also found imaginative thinking helpful in deciding what ideas or directions not to use or consider in detail. There is not enough space to discuss all the ways to generate alternative solutions. Below are what I consider to be the most important methods.
- Reflective Thinking – You search, explore, follow leads, gather pertinent data, information, basic principles, concepts and use reflective thinking. You can also use rest-illumination or rest-insight. You load your mind with subject data – then rest – then start thinking about your problem again in a relaxed manner.
- Triggers – Things that stimulate your mind´s store of stocked memories and cause recall and new train of thought. It´s best to load your mind whit data pertinent to your current problem. It is the prepared or loaded mind that can best be triggered. At that point, you then:
Experiment or visualize
Have discussion – pick minds
Attend conferences and exhibits
Use a computer program
Browse through a store
Search your files or periodicals
Trial and error procedures
While you are doing all these things, you are reflecting on your problem as you acquire more information. Then, EUREKA – suddenly ILLUMINATION comes – or more gradual insight climaxes! Something has triggered your mind and you have an idea, lead, discovery, or tentative solution. This may be a small or very big idea.”
Now that we know some of the methods that are used, we observe that in one way or another we have already occupy them when facing the CREATION PROCESS. Let´s go further and now understand the concept of “INNOVATION” identifying some definitions:
Building a proper definition of INNOVATION following the previous ones:
Commercial exploitation of new ideas, processes, products, designs, technologies, commercial activities, services or systems, with minor or radical changes.
What is the purpose of these changes and innovations?
Markets are increasingly competitive, companies needs differentiators to stay and grow, so they require people and processes who help them understand, manage and dominate the processes of change. Continuous improvement, change as an element of permanence in the economy and societies. Here are some supporting quotes:
“Change is a law of life. Anyone who only looks to the past or present, will lose the future. ”
John Fitzgerald Kennedy
“Improving is changing; so to be perfect you have to change often.” Winston Churchill
“Change is the only unchanging thing.” Arthur Schopenhauer
Of course, customers and companies seek specific solutions to their needs; and a change that does not contribute in solving them will be unsuccessful.That is why, to innovate we require a process guided by a thorough and thorough analysis of the markets and with client colaboration. In this sense Jeff Degraff author of the book “The innovation code” describes some requirements to be able to achieve innovation:
“The only way to create new hybrid solutions is to clash. Innovation happens when we bring people with contrasting perspectives and complementary areas of expertise together in one room. Innovation is unlike any other form of value or groth because it´s the only kind that necessitates discomfort. It requires us to not get along. We innovate when we disrupt, and we first have to disrupt each other. It´s best that we innovate not with people we agree with but with people who will challenge us. Forget everything you´ve ever heard about teamwork and harmony, It´s time to ruffle some feathers.”
Jeff Degraff, Staney Degraff. (2017). The innovation code. Oakland, California: Berrett Koehler publishers Inc.
Interesting to understand from the hand of Jeff and Staney Degraff, that the comfort zone in empathetic work teams, is the worst scenario we can have to create Innovations. I add to the above that not only it requires integration of multidirectional and multidisciplinary teams, but also requires diverse economies and markets, as well as diverse systems to adequately complement our innovation offer. WE INNOVATE thanks to the human capacity to imagine improvements in our ways and lifestyles. Our hope for growth drives us to the future. The innovation responds to needs initially of use-function, relating to productive-economic, marketing-normative elements, among others, without forgetting those aesthetic-formal, being these the essence of personal and social identification, which adds passion to our reason, and what motivates the acquisition action. Important to note that this last act (motivates the acquisition action), is the key element for business economic development. That is why we still need to integrate the soul into these products and services to innovate, so in order that the communication of these products or services will inspire, we need to understand how to achieve it and what characterizes it? To understand in this respect, I am enclosing the following text by Daniel Perret from his book “Creating divine art, on the origins of inspiration:
“I believe most artists at some point in their life feel an inner call to produce something divine, pure and perfect. The market and human weakness may make many artists forget this for much of their life; yet, an original longing and aspiration remains to contact something deep within, an attraction to their soul and ultimately to what we call the divine. By “artist” I mean any person expressing themselves through artistic means.”
“Art is a way to bring beauty, love, light, truth, joy and eternity into our lives. All of these words are interlinked and may ultimately be considered as being a reflection of the Divine.”
“Accessing finer feelings can only be reached through sincerity and honesty. This is the prerequisite for a genuine transformation process. Divine art is ultimately about furthering this transformation.”
“Divine level of inspiration that deeply moves us when experiencing a particular art form. It is linked to beauty and grace, which is essentially beyond words.”
Daniel Perret. (2016). Creating divine art, On the origins of inspiration. Norderstedt Allemagne: Books on demand GmbH.
Well, with all the above we have defined and understood the concepts of CREATIVITY and INNOVATION. We have also partially analyzed Degraff, and its way of integrating disruption in CREATION PROCESSES, we have also complemented some of these definitions with small personal contributions, based on professional experience. Finally we have understood some concepts that allow INSPIRING, brought from the world of art and extracted from Perret’s book. With all these and its scope, we can then build a broad definition of : CREATING INSPIRING INNOVATION Actions to develop something intelligent and better, through processes and contexts of development in confrontation, in order to experience divine feelings; of beauty and grace and thus achieve the commercial exploitation of new ideas, processes, products, designs, technologies, services or systems, either with minor or radical changes.
MBA Alexander Rolando Morales Heinen
Business consultant / University instructor / Project Manager & CEO Polstaif Innovation
Cel +52 (442) 283 5131
Design and Control Engineering with RFID technologies