November 02, 2017
The Best Definition of Creativity?

Open3 Mind5.jpg

If you google the phrase definitions of creativity, guess how many definitions show up? 135 million! That's right, 135 million. And so, if you are looking for THE definition, give up now. You won't find it. It doesn't exist. What does exist is mucho people's attempts to define creativity -- definitions, by the way, that are influenced by their particular world view, expertise, profession, assumptions, mindset, nationality, and language skills.

That being said, it is still a useful exercise to zero in on a definition that floats your boat -- especially if you are charged with the responsibility of helping your team, department, organization, or own lone-wolf self become more creative.

Towards that end, what follows are 15 definitions I have curated on your behalf. Some are culled from the work of people whose names you will recognize. Some are from complete unknowns. It doesn't matter in the least. What matters is your willingness to think more deeply than usual about this fascinating topic and that you find (or create) a working definition for yourself to get the party started. Ready?

Dictionary.com: "The ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules, patterns, and relationships."

Rollo May: The process of bringing something new into being -- something that brings to our awareness what was previously hidden and points to new life."

Maria Popova: "The ability to connect the seemingly unconnected."

Laptop man + lightbulb.jpg

Roger van Oech: "Imagining familiar things in a new light. Digging below the surface to find previously undetected patterns and find new connections between unrelated phenomena."

Daniel Pink: "Giving the world something it didn't know it needed."

Elizabeth Gilbert: "The strange partnership between a human being's labor and the mystery of inspiration."

Henry Miller: "The occurrence of a composition which is both new and valuable."

Carl Rogers: "The emergence of a novel, relational product growing out of the uniqueness of the individual."

Mihaly Csikszentmhalyi: "An idea, act, or product which changes an existing domain or transforms an existing domain in a new way."

Bernadette: Jiwa: "Tapping into your soul and your intuition and allowing them to guide you what to make."

Michael Grybko: "An idea that is novel, good, and useful. Making connections between different ideas to solve a new problem."

Danny Sullivan: "Building universes out of nothing."

David Merman Scott: Seeing patterns that others don't and effectively communicating them.

Scott Godin: "This might not work."

God: "Let there be light."

The commonalities above? Bringing something new into existence. Transcending existing norms. Going beyond the status quo. Making new connections. Seeing unseen patterns. Tapping into inspiration and intuition. Using your imagination in fresh ways. Adding value to the lives of others.

For the moment, think of creativity as a two-sided coin. One side of the coin is all about the WHAT -- as in the product, service, or deliverable you are birthing. The other side of the coin is all about the HOW -- as in what you need to do in order to birth something new and brilliant in the world.

100 ways to be more creative at work
100 reasons why you don't get your best ideas at work
We help people tap into their creativity
My book on the creative process

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at November 2, 2017 06:11 PM

Post a comment

Thanks for signing in, . Now you can comment. (sign out)

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)


Remember me?


Who Are We?

Idea Champions is a consulting and training company dedicated to awakening and nurturing the spirit of innovation. We help individuals, teams and entire organizations tap into their innate ability to create, develop and implement ideas that make a difference.

MitchDitkoff.com
Click here for the simplest, most direct way, to learn more about Idea Champions' semi-fearless leader, Mitch Ditkoff. Info on his keynotes, workshops, conferences, and more.
Storytelling at Work
Storytelling at Work is Mitch Ditkoff's newly published book about the power of personal storytelling in business – why it matters and what you and your organization can do to leverage the impact of storytelling in the workplace.
Top 5 Speaker
Mitch Ditkoff, the Co-Founder and President of Idea Champions, has recently been voted a top 5 speaker in the field of innovation and creativity by Speakers Platform, a leading speaker's bureau.
Authorized Reseller Logo – GoLeanSixSigma.com
Workshops & Trainings
Highly engaging learning experiences that increase each participant's ability to become a creative force for positive change
Brainstorm Facilitation
High impact certification training that teaches committed change agents how to lead groundbreaking ideation sessions
Cultivating Innovation
Your "best and brightest" are the future leaders of your company, but unless they know how to foster a culture of innovation, their impact will be limited. A one-day workshop with us is all they need to begin this journey.
Our Blog Cabin
Our Heart of Innovation blog is a daily destination for movers and shakers everywhere — gleefully produced by our President, Mitch Ditkoff, voted "best innovation blogger in the world" two years running.
Team Innovation
Innovation is a team sport. Brilliant ideas go nowhere unless your people are aligned, collaborative, and team-oriented. That doesn't happen automatically, however. It takes intention, clarity, selflessness, and a new way of operating.
Webinars Powered by
Idea Champions University
Webinars for online training If you enjoy our blog, you will love our newly launched webinars! Our training is now accessible online to the whole world.
Awake at the Wheel, Book about big ideas If you're looking for a powerful way to jump start innovation and get your creative juices flowing, Awake at the Wheel is for you. Written by Mitch Ditkoff, Co-Founder and President of Idea Champions.
Featured in Alltop Guy Kawasaki's Alltop "online magazine rack" has recognized Idea Champions' blog as one of the leading innovation blogs on the web. Check out The Heart of Innovation, and subscribe!
Face the Music Blues Band The world's first interactive business blues band. A great way to help your workforce go beyond complaint.

"In tune with corporate America." — CNN
© IDEA CHAMPIONS