Creativity can be defined as problem identification and idea generation whilst innovation can be defined as idea selection, development and commercialisation.
There are other useful definitions in this field, for example, creativity can be defined as consisting of a number of ideas, a number of diverse ideas and a number of novel ideas.
There are distinct processes that enhance problem identification and idea generation and, similarly, distinct processes that enhance idea selection, development and commercialisation. Whilst there is no sure fire route to commercial success, these processes improve the probability that good ideas will be generated and selected and that investment in developing and commercialising those ideas will not be wasted.
Innovation can be sub categorised into types. Each can be as important as the other and sub categorising helps focus efforts in multiple directions. For example, process innovation can be just as important as new product innovation:
a) The Japanese car manufacturing industry outmanoeuvred the US car through improvement in manufacturing and quality control processes.
b) Zara, the clothing store, was able to become a model for JIT production through its refinement of the manufacture and distribution process.
c) Information technology allows process and work flow to be refined and speeded up.
d) The EasyJet model works by improving aircraft turnaround times.
e) The Internet allowed Dell to refine the process if order and delivery.
These and other topics are covered in depth in the MBA dissertation on Managing Creativity & Innovation, which can be purchased (along with an Innovation Bible, Creativity and Innovation DIY Audit, Good Idea Generator Software and Power Point Presentation) from http://www.managing-creativity.com/
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Kal Bishop, MBA
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Kal Bishop is a management consultant based in London, UK. He has consulted in the visual media and software industries and for clients such as Toshiba and Transport for London. He has led Improv, creativity and innovation workshops, exhibited artwork in San Francisco, Los Angeles and London and written a number of screenplays. He is a passionate traveller. He can be reached on http://www.managing-creativity.com/