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Reinvention: It’s something you can do

Reinvention: It’s something you can do

Fourteen months after the first one, I tried to put together a Reinvention Forum with the Ho‘ohana Community of my Talking Story blog (which by the way, is a virtual community you are warmly welcomed to join into).

I’ll be frank: I had my doubts that I could pull it off, and as things do have a tendency to happen as your expectations have led them to, the entries for the forum overwhelmingly happened in the final hours before the submission deadline. But they DID happen, and we nearly tripled the articles from the first time around.

Reinvention seems to be a scary word for a lot of people; it ranks right up there with, gulp, “change.” If not scary, it’s intimidating, something you think that you could never do, for it takes someone else with a bigger, revolutionary kind of innovative idea, someone brilliant, …but surely not you. For many, reinvention implies you have to start from scratch and be an Einstein-like inventor, or be an incredibly brave idealist.

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Not true. Learning to reinvent little by little is a way of grooming your own potential for leadership initiative. Your idea doesn’t have to be completely original; we can all reinvent by putting our personal signature on an idea we love which may already exist. There is an incredible amount of unmet opportunity dormant in the wasteland of unsupported ideas which were abandoned by those who weren’t tenacious enough, or who feared making mistakes when they didn’t need to.

Sometimes we reinvent to fix an irritation. I admit this is where my own contributions to the Reinvention Forum happened with the articles I’d written on Human Resources and compensation design. Irritations become very hopeful, positive and proactive within an enthusiastic and optimistic effort to reinvent the processes associated with them. Think of the way a pearl is created around a grain of sand which has become an irritation in an oyster, or the way a talented muralist transforms a wall which previously attracted too much graffiti.

Reinvention is something we can all do. The only question is if we will.

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For me, the word reinvention is not at all intimidating. It has other connotations. An easy way to groom more creativity. The willingness not to give up on something promising, but still slightly flawed. The opportunity to collaborate with others on synergistic effort, uncovering a third alternative; not mine, not yours, but something better entirely. The triumph of our human capacity to make things matter. And as far as virtual communities go, a forum meant to be where people don’t just complain, they generously seek to offer solutions.

Visit our Reinvention Forum on Talking Story and you will see what I mean. Add your own thoughts and comments to help us flesh out our ideas. Counting this post, you have 21 different opportunities to do so. Here is a run-down of the topics you’ll find there.

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Reinventions at Work and in Business:

1. Reinventing Brainstorming at Work
2. In search of a job spec that inspires
3. Reinventing Business, Making the Transition from Advertiser to Facilitator
4. Employee Evangelism
5. Coyote and Jackalope
6. How to Kill Creativity
7. Robots R Us: Crisis in Customer Service
8. Manifesting Possibility
9. The Most Valuable 10% of your Job Description
10. Meeting Planner | Organizer | Worksheet
11. The Resistance
12. Want to be a great place to work?
13. Why do young leaders leave organizations?
14. Vaporizing Limitations
15. Information Sharing: Don’t Hoard your Knowledge
16. Passion for the Good Customer Experience: Circle Recognition
17. A Reinvention Revolution; 3 Sacred Cows to Start With
18. The Reinvention of Human Resources
19. Got a job to fill? Tell it like it is
20. Great Project to consider: A Compensation Overhaul

I fully intend to have a Reinvention Forum again. Perhaps you’ll be there as a contributing author the next time, telling us about your own reinvention success story. I hope so; there is a wealth of potential just waiting for its day in the sun, and its got your name on it.

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Articles Referenced here:
Reinventions at Work and in Business: a Ho‘ohana Community Forum
Synergy: The Third Alternative
Looking for Leadership – any ideas?
From Mistake to Marvel

Rosa Say is the author of Managing with Aloha, Bringing Hawaii’s Universal Values to the Art of Business and the Talking Story blog. She is also the founder and head coach of Say Leadership Coaching, a company dedicated to bringing nobility to the working arts of management and leadership.

Rosa’s Previous Thursday Column was: And the Survey says?

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Rosa Say

Rosa is an author and blogger who dedicates to helping people thrive in the work and live with purpose.

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

What Is Creativity? We All Have It, and Need It

What Is Creativity? We All Have It, and Need It

Do you think of yourself as a creative person? Do you play the drums or do watercolor paintings? Perhaps compose songs or direct plays? Can you even relate to any of these so called ‘creative’ experiences? Growing up, did you ever have that ‘artistic’ sibling or friend who excelled in drawing, playing instruments or literature? And you maybe wondered why you can’t even compose a birthday card greeting–or that drawing stick figures is the furthest you’ll ever get to drawing a family portrait. Many people have this common assumption that creativity is an inborn talent; only a special group of people are inherently creative, and everyone else just unfortunately does not have that special ability. You either have that creative flair or instinct, or you don’t. But, this is far from the truth! So what is creativity?

Can I Be Creative?

The fact is, that everyone has an innate creative ability. Despite what most people may think, creativity is a skill that everyone can learn and hone on. It’s a skill with huge leverage that allows you to generate enormous amounts of value from relatively little input. How is that so? You’ll have to start by expanding your definition of creativity. Ironically, you have to be creative and ‘think out of the box’ with the definition! Creativity at its heart, is being able to see things in a way that others cannot. It’s a skill that helps you find new perspectives to create new possibilities and solutions to different problems. So, if you encounter different challenges and problems that need solving on a regular basis, then creativity is an invaluable skill to have.Let’s say, for example, that you work in sales. Having creativity will help you to look for new ways to approach and reach out to potential customers. Or perhaps you’re a teacher. In this role you have to constantly look for new ways to deliver your message and educate your students.

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How Creativity Works

Let me break another misconception about creativity, which is that it’s only used to create completely “new” or “original” things. Again, this is far from the truth. Because nothing is ever completely new or original. Everything, including works of art, doesn’t come from nothing. Everything derives from some sort of inspiration. That means that creativity works by connecting things together in order to derive new meaning or value.From this perspective, you can see a lot of creativity in action. In technology, Apple combines traditional computers with design and aesthetics to create new ways to use digital products. In music, a musician may be inspired by various styles of music, instruments and rhythms to create an entirely new type of song. All of these examples are about connecting different ideas, finding common ground amongst the differences, and creating a completely new idea out of them.

What Really Is Creativity?

Creativity Needs an Intention

Another misconception about the creative process is that you can just be in a general “creative” state. Real creativity isn’t about coming up with “eureka!” moments for random ideas. Instead, to be truly creative, you need to have a direction. You have to ask yourself this question: “What problem am I trying to solve?” Only by knowing the answer to this question can you start flexing your creativity muscles. Often times, the idea of creativity is associated with the ‘Right’ brain, with intuition and imagination. Hence a lot of focus is placed on the ‘Right’ brain when it comes to creativity. But, to get the most out of creativity, you need to utilize both sides of your brain–Right and Left–which means using the analytical and logical part of your brain, too. This may sound surprising to you, but creativity has a lot to do with problem solving. And, problem solving inherently involves logic and analysis. So instead of throwing out the ‘Left’ brain, full creativity needs them to work in unison. For example, when you’re looking for new ideas, your ‘Left’ brain will guide you to a place of focus, which is based on your objective behind the ideas you’re searching for. The ‘Right’ brain then guides you to gather and explore based on your current focus. And when you decide to try out these new ideas, your ‘Right’ brain will give you novel solutions outside of the ones you already know. Your ‘Left’ brain then helps you evaluate and tune the solutions to work better in practice. So, logic and creativity actually work hand in hand, and not one at the expense of the other.

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Creativity Is a Skill

At the end of the day, creativity is a skill. It’s not some innate or natural born talent that some have over others. What this means is that creativity and innovation can be practiced and improved upon systematically.A skill can be learned and practiced by applying your strongest learning styles. Want to know what your learning style is? Try this test. A skill can be measured and improved through a Feedback Loop, and can be continuously upgraded over time by regular practice. Through regular practice, your creativity goes through different stages of proficiency. This means that you can become more and more creative! If you never thought that creativity was relevant to you, or that you don’t have a knack for being creative… think again! You can use creativity in any aspect of your life. In fact you should use it, as it will allow you to to break through your usual loop, get you out of your comfort zone, and inspire you to grow and try new things. Creativity will definitely give you an edge when you’re trying to solve a problem or come up with new solutions.

Start Connecting the Dots

Excited to start honing your creativity? Here at Lifehack, we’ve got a wealth of knowledge to help you get started. We understand that creativity is a matter of connecting things together in order to derive new meaning or value. So, if you want to learn how to start connecting the dots, check out these tips:

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Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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