Plywords on IDEATION by Karyl Morin
The future has to be imagined before it is created.
How’s your imagination doing? Awesome, Good, Fair, Barely There, Horrible. Are you brave enough to avoid being consumed by maintaining and responding to prioritize breakthrough ideas, creativity and divergent thinking? Better is possible. No doubt, but first we must imagine what that better is.
It’s a word I love. It’s a space I feel most at home within. Some feel at home there, others prefer more convergent thinking. Either way - we all need imagination time to fuel ideation. The capacity for or act of forming or entertaining ideas.
CREATIVE CAPITAL. How’s yours? Creative Capital is the capacity of a person, family or community to imagine and express new possibilities through creative activity. This is a personal and civic asset that increases the effectiveness of individuals, the strength of families and the health of communities. It is our imagination and original ideas applied toward a current need.
Here’s 4 practical ideas to fuel ideation: 1) Listening and fresh eyes. 2) Leaving your typical surroundings and distractions. 3) Being with a diverse, enthusiastic group. 4) Ditching the technology.
Whether you are brainstorming solutions for talent recruit, addressing homelessness, or changing difficult transitions with a child, empathy is the place to begin. Have you really listened to the person your organization is seeking to serve? Have you asked your customers for direct feedback? Do you have perspective other than your own. Listening and empathy are the best fuel for productive ideation.
Sister Corita Kent is a hero of mine, a bold artist and activist in the 60s who shared this rule: “Don’t try to create and analyze at the same time. They’re different processes.”
Whether you are working alone or as a team, begin with divergent thinking before you switch gears to converge on an idea to move forward into prototyping. Often times the most outlandish ideas, which might seem logical to rule out, will lead to a remarkably on point solution. So don’t be THAT person that shuts down creative ideas in a meeting - just entertain ideas, humor the process, silence your hyper-responsible logic. Give ideation it’s own space rather than gearing up the logic and shutting creativity down.
This is your world. Create it or someone else will.
What if we? Creativity and collaboration are at the core of who I am. And yet, I still find myself pulled away from ideation and towards implementation. Why do we busy ourselves and leave aside our creative capital? Leaving out creativity, ideation and divergent thinking will prevent the breakthroughs, solutions and boldness we need for a better future.
Karyl has creatively pursued talent development of youth for 20+ years with a collaborative spirit and a bent toward innovation. She is a systems thinker, passionate about empowering individuals and organizations to discover and pursue their unique contribution to the world.