If you are in business for yourself or are just trying to successfully run an HR department creativity is something you might be interested in. I read a list created by Michael Michalko called 101 Tips on How to Become More Creative. From that I have selected what I consider five easy tips to being more creative and my reasons around the tip.
Tip 1: Read a different newspaper (or magazine) than you normally read.
Most of us have a tendency to get into a rut and we continue to read the same thing we read all the time. We read the same newspaper, the same magazine, the same websites. You need to change this up. Read something different. In fact read something out of your comfort zone.
Tip 2: List 20 ideas in two columns of 10
Randomly draw lines from one idea in the first column to an idea in the second column. Combine the ideas and see what you come up with. Repeat the exercise several times to see what you come up with.
Tip 3: Look at a problem from at least three different perspectives.
If you are trying to change something HR try to get away from your perspective. Look at what you are trying to do from the perspective of the employee, or a customer or even the government. What would they think of the idea? How might you have to change it to please different constituencies?
Tip 4: List your assumptions and then reverse them.
We all have assumptions about the world around us that guide or steer our actions on a daily basis. As an example we all talk about sunrise even though Copernicus proved centuries ago the Sun is not moving Earth is. So what assumptions do you have? Millennials want promoted in just a year? Older workers are sitting around waiting for retirement? You get the idea.
Tip 5: Imagine you are the opposite sex.
If you are stuck on something imagine you are a member of the opposite sex and try to determine how they would view the problem. Of course you could always make this a group exercise and trade gender for the exercise.
One of the other 96 tips listed was one I thought was interesting. Try to imagine what the sky would taste like. How would a clear blue sky taste versus a dark cloudy day?
The idea behind these exercises it to get you to get out your normal thinking rut. You can get into a rut whether you are doing something unsuccessful or you are doing something successful. See The Rut of Success Can Actually Be a Roadblock. So try to change the way you normally do things to prompt your creativity. And if you get stuck you can always check out The Creativity Post.
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