In my last article, I shared some insight about how leaders think, and this week I want to continue in that line.

For more than a decade, I have been studying leaders and leadership, and one of the ways I know leaders think is CREATIVELY. 

Leaders think creatively and If you want to be a leader, you must learn how to think creatively.

One of the most valuable resource you bring to any team or to your organisation is your creativity. More than what you get done, more than your title, more than the role you play in your company, more than your output – it is the ideas that matter. Your ideas must be solving a problem or improving the team.

You should aim to be known as the person who brings innovative ideas to the team.

There are a few thing I have come to know about creativity; If you are not as creative as you would really like to be, you can learn to be creative, you can change your way of thinking.

Here are a few things I know about creative thinkers:

  • Creative thinkers believe in themselves. Nothing creative will ever come out of anyone who does not believe in him or herself. It begins first with your belief about yourself.
  • Creative thinkers value ideas. Creativity is about having lots of ideas and the only way to have ideas is if you value ideas. You have to value the ideas of others and know how to connect ideas to another idea.
  • Creative thinkers explore options. One of the ways to stimulate your imagination and creativity is to expose yourself to various possible options. Don’t be fixed in a box because there may be many roads that lead to the market. Knowing this helps you explore options and exposes your creativity.
  • Creative thinkers are not afraid of failure because creativity equals failure. This is very important. People don’t release creative ideas because they are afraid of what others will make of them. You have to be willing to look foolish and fail in a bid to test your ideas because creative people keep searching for new ideas. They don’t let the ideas that didn’t work before prevent them from coming up with more ideas that may work.

Let me end this week’s letter by recommending some ways YOU can start cultivating creativity as a leader:

  1. Force yourself to do something new and exciting every week. Make it a goal to do something new every week. Try a new route to your office, try a new recipe, try something new every week. It shapes and forces your mind to be open and receptive to new ideas.
  1. Ask questions. Keep asking questions. Even if you know the answer, ask the question in another way, you will find some new gems.
  2. Develop a creative environment. I read in one of Steve Jobs biography about how he loved creative environment. That’s why Apple create innovative products. Steve Jobs was known for white spaces in his office and there is a psychological law about how your environment shapes your creativity. If your table is always scattered, if things are littered everywhere, it affects how creative you can become. I have tried this personally and it is true. Always keep a neat environment, put creative arts around your home and office, it inspires creativity. Some environments kill creativity.
  3. Spend time with creative people. Creativity is contagious. He who works with creative people will be creative. Association is powerful. If you want to increase creative ideas in your work, hang around creative people in your industry.
  4. Travel. Go to new places. Explore new books.  This is very effective to get yourself out of the box of your own personal limitations. There is a proverb that says, “Person wey never see another man farm think say him papa farm big pass”. Travel. Travel. Travel. Expose yourself!

I’ll stop here today, but remember the lesson, leaders are creative thinkers and you can learn to be one.

P.S. Incase you missed it, new episodes of The Great Owete Podcast are out and you can listen to over 60 episodes of my podcast on SpotifyApple, and I have recently started doing podcast in videos that you can watch on YouTube. You should Listen, Subscribe, Rate, Like, Comment & Share with your friends.

Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *