How to develop creativity for entrepreneurs and businesses owners

In order to understand “how develop creativity for entrepreneurs & business owners”, we should first reply to the question “what is creativity”?

According to the vocabulary, its origin comes from the Latin term “to create”. The Cambridge Dictionary says “the ability to produce or use original and unusual ideas”. Certainly, for us in the “creative business” such as architects and designers, this is one of the most used and abused words. From my standing point, “creativity is the ability to detect new undiscovered paths that provides new sources of inspiration”. Such as many other skills, creativity can be a gift but we can also be educated and trained to it.

Here below a few keywords that best reflects what creativity means to me and how to include it in our job routine:

    1. Curiosity is embedded in creativity, it is also very related to observing and capturing any source of inspiration. Achille Castiglioni, a famous Italian Architect who designed masterpieces for Alessi, Flos, Zanotta sentenced “if you are not curious, forget about this job; if you are not interested in others, what they do and how they act, then being a designer is not a job for you”. Quoting Vico Magistretti, another Italian design master, we’re invited to “look at the everyday objects with curious eyes”. For upgrading and adjusting our perspective, we do have to set ourselves a critical-thinking mindset, that continuously keep us ready for new observations and discoveries.
    2. Conceptuality helps to reduce within a minimum of factors the basis on which our idea, or concept, is based. Mind-maps or conceptual maps helps to widen the vision of the projects, selecting and fixing all possible opportunities and paths, with the support of a strong visual scheme. By connecting the most important facts on our mind maps, we scaffold a strategy and a more stable routine, towards a creative process.
    3. Courage is the trigger element that ignite the process. Often happens that we are too shy or not so confident about a new idea, a new proposal, but when we see a competitor that reach a similar result, we feel defeated. If we are very convinced about an innovative idea, we do have to take all risks and “throw our heart over the obstacles”, results will certainly arrive.

This is to say that there are many “conceptual art & design” courageous evidences, the so called “ready-made design”. In this case, with a curious and creative approach, by the transposition, connection and implementation of factors from different fields, the designers and the companies give birth to new products, with a new function.

By the way, if you look at “Mezzadro” stool by Zanotta or “Toio” floor lamp by Flos, you’ll easily understand how this process works. If it’s true that creativity must be trained, certainly art galleries, trade shows and movies are a good source of inspiration: as investigators we fill the mind-map with all the necessary clues needed to reach the solution, “thinking “out of the box”. As architects and designers, we aim to stay “fresh and original”, thus because originality is a major issue in these challenging years, where in many businesses fields a lot of innovations arise.

“Mezzadro” stool, Zanotta – design by Achille & Pier Giacomo Castiglioni – 1957

“Sella” stool, Zanotta – design by Achille & Pier Giacomo Castiglioni – 1957

“Toio” floor lamp, Flos – design by Achille & Pier Giacomo Castiglioni – 1962

All the new revolutions provide new tools and new solutions, as well as new opportunities to all our businesses. In conclusion, we should embrace a creative thinking mindset, with a trans disciplinary method, towards an active participation to the innovation process.

By Roberto Di Stefano, Interior Architect and Premium Member of Leaders First.