Encouraging Creative Thought in your Partnership
Community groups in particular have a real knack of thinking creatively
and finding unorthodox answers to problems.
And it is little wonder they are able to do so, given all the
challenges faced by community groups – and, linked to them, community
business partnerships - not only to achieve their goals, but simply
Some organisations or partnerships are lucky enough to have a leader
who is able to think laterally or "outside the box". In other
situations, it may be the entire committee, leadership group or key
partnership drivers who harness their creativity through tossing ideas
around the room.
Many believe thinking creatively cannot be taught – that you just have
to have the "knack" of doing it. But often all that people need to think
creatively is a supportive environment and a little encouragement.
- Keep a fresh and active mind by having
other interests outside your work or partnership (family, friends, hobbies, exercise or relaxation, etc).
- Write down good ideas as they come to
- Keep a notepad or an ideas journal handy
to jot any ideas down.
- Create a situation where people feel
confident enough to express creative ideas.
- Who's to know if the idea that will solve your partnership's
problem will come from what may initially seems to be a "crazy" thought?
- Encourage people to put forward these left-field ideas by:
- Not deriding the idea, or the person who thought of it,
because of its "craziness". Often the craziest idea opens the door to a line of thinking
that can lead to an appropriate solution.
- Going through and seriously considering the idea as you would
those that are more straight down the line.
- Take in as much information on a
subject as you can.
- Challenge your creative thinking by
setting goals for any brain storming sessions you may have (such as a set number of ideas or a set timeframe within which to find a solution).
- Establish some guidelines to judge the
success of your creative thinking or ideas.
- Do the ideas provide a solution? Is it a realistic solution? Do we have the resources or the money to be able to use that solution?
- In considering each issue start with
exercises, like answering the questions: Who? What? Where? When? Why? How?
- Then gather some other people together and put several brains on
the problem and see if you can find an improved solution.