Creativity, invention and innovation are not the same thing. To create a successful product or business, the entrepreneur needs to recognize the differences, and combine them in the right mix. These concepts are closely linked together. They make us think of something new, something really different. However, they are very distinctive and related in such an amazing way. At the very “CORE” of the new is creativity. With this, people dare to think of strange, and sometime crazy, things.
Creativity is a process by which a symbolic domain in the culture is changed. New songs, new ideas, new machines are what creativity is about (Mihaly 1997). Creativity is the ability to make or otherwise bring into existences something new, whether a new solution to a problem, a new method or device, or a new artistic object or form. Wyckoff (1991) defines creativity as new and useful. Creativity is the act of seeing things that everyone around us sees while making connections that no one else has made.
Creativity is moving from the known to the unknown. No entrepreneur or enterprise, however successful and big, can continue to hold a place of leadership unless it recognizes that modern business operates in a world of galloping change which creates new problems, risk and opportunities and for which they have to mobilize the enterprise’s resources before changes make their impact felt. To do successfully, the entrepreneur and enterprise should know where this firm is going and how the firm will get there.
This is turn requires a clear definition of the company’s business which will enable it to continually adopt operations to the realities of the market place, ‘the very corner stone of survival and growth” Innovation is defined as adding something new to an existing product or process. The key words are adding and existing. The product or process has already been created from scratch and has worked reasonably well. When it is changed so that it works better or fulfils a different need, then there is innovation on what already exists.
Innovation is the successful exploitation of new ideas. All innovation begins with creative ideas. Accordingly creativity is embedded in inventions and innovations. Inventions, in my view, are the representations, tangible as well as intangible, of ideas. A creative brain contains full of bizarre ideas, but only the ‘inventive’ brain can FORMULATE those ideas into something imaginable, something which can be described in a piece of paper and submitted to the Patent Office. The concept of creativity, innovation and invention Concept creativity
Creativity is marked by the ability to create, bring into existence, to invent into a new form, to produce through imaginative skill, to make to bring into existence something new. Creativity is not ability to create out of nothing (only God can do that), but the ability to generate new ideas by combining, changing, or reapplying existing ideas. Some creative ideas are astonishing and brilliant, while others are just simple, good practical ideas that no one seems to have thought, of yet. (Harris, 1998). Every successful entrepreneur has substantial creative ability.
To be a successful entrepreneur one need to be reawakened and be highly committed to creativity. Creativity is also an attitude, the ability to accept change and newness, a willingness to play with ideas and possibilities, a flexibility of outlook, the habit of enjoying the good, while looking for ways to improve it, we are socialized into accepting only a small number of permissible or normal things, like chocolate-covered strawberries, for example. The creative person realizes that there are other possibilities like peanut butter and banana sandwiches, or chocolate-covered prunes ( Harris (1998).
Creativity is also a process. Creative entrepreneurs work hard and continually to improve ideas and solutions, by making gradual alterations and refinements to their works. Contrary to the mythology surrounding creativity, very few of creative excellence are produced with a single stroke of brilliance or in a frenzy of rapid activity. Much closer to the real truth are the stories of companies which had to take the invention away from the inventor in order to market it because the inventor would have kept on tweaking it and fiddling with it,, always trying to make it a little better, (Harris, 1998).
A product is creative when it is “novel” and “appropriate”. A novel product is original, not predicable. The bigger the concept, and the more the product stimulates further work ideals, the more the product is creative (Stermbering and Lubart). Creativity requires passion and commitment. Out of the creative is born symbols and myths. It brings to our awareness what was previously hidden and points to new life. Then experience is one of heightened consciousness. To embrace creativity the entrepreneur should apply Creative thinking.
Creative thinking is the art of generating solution to problems by the force of imagination and reasoning. It is an activity of the mind seeking to find answer to some of life’s questions. In a dynamic and changing world, the challenges of man are also not static. They take on new forms and require a deep creative thinking approach. It is necessary to know that we live in a thinker’s world. It is therefore, not surprising to see that the leading entrepreneurs are those who see ahead with the eyes of their mind. Those who have engaged their minds in resourceful thinking to generate idea and products, which stand the test of time.
Every idea is a product of thinking and every product is the manifestation of idea naked in a thinker’s mind. These are people who see problems as opportunities to improve and do something new or something better, people who keep these two vital questions on their mind. “What can I do to make things better, or what can I do to make better things? This is the product of thinking. In making things better, the goals are usually to improve productivity and efficiency, achieve speed, enhanced comfort and convenience, influence returns positively, and so much more.
While in making better things, thinking can produce various alternative leading making better things, thinking can produce various alterative leading to the evolution of a completely new idea, new production processes, or a total departure from the conventional. Whatever the goal, thinking is an indispensable tool in the life of all successful entrepreneurs. The celebrated discoveries of man are not accidents. The minds of men/women were engaged in creative thinking to deliver the visible products we enjoy today.
Name them: Bill Gate and the computer, Graham Bell and the telephone, Michael Faraday and electricity. Concept of Innovation Innovation is the process of bringing the best ideas into reality, which triggers a creative idea, which generates a series of innovative events. Innovation is the creation of new value. Innovation is the process that transforms new ideas into new value- turning an idea into value. One cannot innovate without creativity. Innovation is the process that combines ideas and knowledge into new value. Without innovation an enterprise and what it provides quickly become obsolete.
Innovation can be defined as the introduction of something new or different. Innovation is the implementation of creative inspiration. Joseline 1998 defines innovation as “the inter-section of invention and insight, leading to the creative of social and economic value” Innovation is “value” – the creation of value adding value to customer’s satisfaction- “delighting the customers”. Innovation is the basis of all competition advantages, the means of anticipating and meeting customer’s needs and the method of utilization of technology.
Innovation is fostered by information gathered from new connections; from insights gained by journeys into other disciplines or places; from active, collegial networks and fluid open boundaries. Innovation arises from organizing circles of exchange, where information is not just accumulated or stored, but created. Knowledge is generated a new from connections that were not there before (Wheatley (1994). Innovation requires a fresh way of looking at things, an understanding of people, and an entrepreneurial willingness to take risks and to work hard.
An idea doesn’t become an innovation until it is widely adopted and incorporated into people’s daily lives. Most people resist change, so a key part of innovating is convincing other people that your idea is a good one – by enlisting their help, and, in doing so, by helping them see the usefulness of the idea. Enterprises throughout the world are experiencing what can be legitimately described as a revolution, rising energy and material costs, fierce international competition, new technologies, increasing use of automation and computers.
All these are major challenges, which demand a positive response from the entrepreneur and management if the enterprise is to survive and prosper. At a time when finance is expensive, the firm’s liquidity is bordering on crisis, the need for creativity, and innovation is more pressing than ever and as competitors fall by the way side, the rewards for successful products and process are greater. The instigation of new development is the responsibility of the enterprises themselves, which, through experience, are aware of the difficulties created when undertaking innovative investments in a period of great uncertainty.
Innovation calls for special entrepreneurial and management skills, the cooperation of a committed workforce, finance and a climate which will create the optimum overall conditions to encourage success. Joseph Schumpeter (1934) believes that the concept of innovation, described as the use of an invention to create a new commercial product or service, is the key force in creating new demand and thus new wealth. Innovation creates new demand and entrepreneurs bring the innovations to the market. This destroys the existing markets and creates new ones, which will in turn be destroyed by even newer products or services.
Schumpeter calls this process “creative destructions. ” The most vital concept for the entrepreneur The most vital concept for the entrepreneur is creativity. Creativity is the driving force behind most people who have been entrepreneurial successful. It is a term with which most people are familiar with, yet, it remains a concept that most people are not fully aware of. The value of creativity in entrepreneurship remains a concept which has not been explored at much depth. Creativity has the potential to find new solutions to a problem and bringing something new into existence.
So it is easy to understand how valuable creativity is, considering, problem solving is what entrepreneur end up doing most of the time. But how can an entrepreneur define creativity: “Creativity is a person’s ability to think beyond the current limits of a domain, and the perseverance and willingness to take intellectual risks to produce something new within a context that is amenable to the transformable idea or product. ” When a person pursues creativity, it is what is called as pursuing entrepreneurship. The process of entrepreneurship is all about creativity.
Creativity is applied to every start-up idea, because a start-up may be based on an innovative idea or as an improvement to the existing idea. And each idea is based on creativity. A person who has an out-of-box thinking can easily fit into the role of an entrepreneur. It is because people who tend to have a linear thinking process are usually incapable to solve the abstract nature of problems experienced in start-ups. In such situations its only creativity that helps entrepreneurs dig their way out. This is why creativity plays such an important role in entrepreneurship.