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Monday, February 13, 2012

Creativity, when a + b is equal to innovation

 Creativity is related with art generally, so when schools says it has to be included as curricular ingredient, thought runs through activities such as painting, music or theatre. But in the world of business, creativity plays an important role, beyond of the knowledge required for a job, a creative person solves problems, and earns thousands of dollars to the company that hires that genius.
Thinking about business, innovation is the key, the difference between continue to grow in the enterprise vortex or close the door of a company regardless of few years has needed to make it grow up to certain level.

A search between Linkedin comments reveals that human resources departments have this ability as the most desirable among employees. I remember only one of the thousands of comments that I found with a search, and he was a person who was looking for a high-level position and he said that after two hours of interview, the CEO of the company asked him, in a disturbing manner and without nothing to do with the position description: how many are two plus two?, and fast this person replied: whatever you want it to be… and he got incredibly the job with that single answer.

There are various explanations of what creativity is, but basically is the ability to generate ideas or thoughts that arrive at original solutions, and can be applied to all areas of life.
Various concepts associated as wit, talent brainstorming ideas, inventiveness, originality, intuition, inspiration, imagination, serendipity, art, intelligence, flexible, divergent thinking, innovation, problem-solving, capacity for analysis and synthesis, inventive, original thought and ability to change the environment.

Neuroscientists studies point to front cortex as the head of creative ideas, however, most of the researches have been developed linking artistic activities, in a way such that has found that this area processed musical tasks, and visual and verbal creativity (Fuster, 2008; Runco, 2007).

However it should be noted that creativity, beyond art requires flexible thinking and adaptability to the requirements of the tasks, divergent thinking, and problem solving, which is why Damasio (cited in Runco, 2007) explains that the brain hierarchy with regard to this kind of task would be given by the relationship between the macro systems, neural networks and molecular processes, because creativity is the sum of many functional processes, since it must be dotted with motivation, expertise in the subject, knowledge of the field in which ideas, is being developed which involves a representation and diversification of ideas to find one among many that is appropriate, innovative and adequate to resolve the issue in which you wish to innovate.

People usually say that children are particularly creative, and this is the reason that many skills must begin to develop from very young, for example artistic activities and is thus in part because they are not afraid to do or say things or social criticism. Pablo Picasso said that "all children are artists, the problem is that they lose the genius when they grow up" how happens this?.

One explanation is that the pre frontal cortex, takes place during the first years of life, but eventually grows and expands in density and volume as part of the normal development of the adult brain, and has resulted in the adult cognitive quality of control of momentum and attention, but at the same time, inhibits the ability of isolated thoughts, and this does grow self-censorship and due to environmental molding, so the adult learn to stop due to critical social (Fuster, 2002; Lehrer, 2010).

And it is here where begins the social paradox which leads to many people, especially young people to the frustration and others to glory, because even if it’s socially requested, we applaud innovation and generating ideas, but on the other hand, inhibits this feature in schools. This is the reason why Europe,  has tried to integrate creativity as part of academic and cultural policies since some years (Robinson, 1999).

The problem is that culture change at an accelerated pace thanks to the technological revolution where every day there are new applications and ways of interacting and as mentioned by Robinson, (2011) change is never linear, and cannot be predicted that there is around the corner, while the traditional curricula, has not achieved the leap and stop thinking that all students should learn the same rhythm (Dzib Goodin 2011) by what the interaction between creativity and curricula must be if one of the two allows the other to find the squaring of the circle.

Allow flexible thinking implies that there is not only one right answer, but in any case, different approaches to the same problem, without falling into another error of education, which is put in competition for the best, which minimizes the largest part often tolerance to frustration and creates negative emotions (Akinol and Mendes, 2008). Recent research shows that there is a tendency on the part of most creative people to dishonesty, due to the pressure to be the best and find the best options to solve a problem (Gino and Ariely, 2011).

However, creativity must be developed for everyday life, not just art, science, or big business, flexible thinking can be the answer to many situations of daily life, combined with the creativity would allow using various tools (Ionescu, 2011) and not just the most popular ones, or use them more effectively.

And perhaps the question is: what is the best way to teach creativity?, if those words are searched in Google, the answer is at  4 million 600 thousand entries, and gives the impression that there is no doubt that it is possible to teach this gift so valuable for enterprises, however, even though it is not a skill that may only have some elected, it seems that the experts agree that there must be certain conditions as the stimulation of the environment, motivating to resolve challenges, knowledge of a topic, a certain level of knowledge in the area to develop, practice, motivation and let each learn to recognize the moments of illumination (DiChristina, 2008).

The experts also explained that this creative thinking stems, not necessarily listening muses, it arises from the reading, observation, interaction with the world, which causes a slow but deep incubation of ideas, and that when you are in the process, should be avoided in the best possible way the distractions, because they sometimes miss an idea, which can be difficult or sometimes impossible to recover. Been looking for the least amount of sophisticated ideas, to avoid frustration, and learn to listen to criticism, unless it is hit too to the ego, then this will be whoever is winning when arises the idea of one million dollars (Johnson, 2010). And it is worth mentioning that originality is not enough for creativity, because we must also consider the usefulness of the idea as a variable (Runco and Jaeger, 2012).

Is why Pablo Picasso once said that "inspiration exists, but has to find us working", so there is no an easy recipe that produces innovative ideas, moreover, must be considered environments, because while some need solitude and calm to create, others feel inspired listening a brainstorm  of ideas within work teams with multiple points of view and ways of thinking.

But you must consider that the modern world offers advantages of communication without precedent, for example, international work teams meeting virtual conference rooms or in video conferences, with the possibility of sharing of multi-cultural influences and knowledge, which is why the creative possibilities can be multiplied.

At school level, there are areas where creativity and innovation are basic, regardless of the field of education. That's why that school programs not may leave out, but while there is a curricular change, and leave aside the idea that everyone should learn the same, at the same rate and in the same way, creativity is not an input. And many lose the passion and probably the possibility of developing talent (Dzib Goodin, 2011).

Therefore, the invitation is to enable that innovation and creativity are an item and ability in daily life, in all areas of society, to find black square circled of colors  and allow that talent to flourish, because in the end the school work, should be helping the search for talent and younger you find it, it’s best.

 Alma Dzib Goodin

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Akinola, M. and Mendes WB. (2008) The dark side  of creativity: Biological vulnerability and negative emotions lead to greater artistic creativity. Pers. Soc. Psychol. Bull. 34 (12) 1677-1686.

DiChristina, M. (2008) Let your creativity soar. Scientific American Mind. 19 (3) 24-31.

Dzib Goodin, A. (2011) The search for talent: the holy grail. Disponible en :

Fuster, JM. (2008) Prefrontal cortex. Elsevier. Oxford. UK.

Fuster, JM. (2002) Frontal lobe and cognitive development. Journal of Neurocytology. 31.(3-5) 373-385.

Gino, F. and Ariely, D. (2011) The dark side of creativity: Original thinkers can be more dishonest. Harvard Bussiness School. Working papers. Disponible en  red:

Ionescu, T. (2011) Exploring the nature of cognitive flexibility. New Ideas in Psychology. 30 (2) 190-200.

Johnson, S. (2010) Where good ideas come from: The natural history of innovation.  Penguin publisher. USA.

Lehrer, J. (2010) Childish creativity.  Disponible en red:

Robinson, K. (1999) Culture, creativity and the young: developing public policy. Council of Europe Publishing. Belgium.

Robinson, K. (2011) Out of our minds. Courier Westford. Westford, MA. USA.

Runco, M. (2007) Creativity theories and Themes: research, development and practice. Elsevier Academic Press. USA.

Runco, M. and Jaeger, GJ. (2012) The standard definition of creativity. Creativity Research Journal. 24 (1) 92-96.


  1. Amazing post and nicely explained the concept!!!!!

    Creative Ideas

  2. Thank you David!!

    Thanks for reading and stop and take a moment to leave a message!. As you can see I'm interested in learning.

    Thank you so much for your comment:)