The Creative Mindset: Mastering the Six Skills That Empower Innovation

The Creative Mindset: Mastering the Six Skills That Empower Innovation

The Creative Mindset: Mastering the Six Skills That Empower Innovation

The Creative Mindset: Mastering the Six Skills That Empower Innovation


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"Jeff and Staney emphasize that small acts of creativity can have huge consequences and that ordinary people can do extraordinary things if they can see the opportunities in front of them."
—Mitch Jacobson, Executive Director, Austin Technology Incubator, UT Blackstone LaunchPad, University of Texas at Austin

Nearly all of today's major innovation workshops and programs call on organizations to drive innovation. What they miss is that innovation comes from the personal creativity of individuals. And creativity doesn't require an advanced education or technical skills—all employees can be creative. Often, all they lack is a fitting mindset and the right skills.

The Creative Mindset brings how-to advice, tools, and techniques from two master innovators who have taught and worked with over half of all Fortune 500 companies. Jeff and Staney DeGraff introduce six essential creative-thinking skills that can be easily mastered with limited practice and remembered as the acronym CREATE: Concentrate, Replicate, Elaborate, Associate, Translate, and Evaluate. These six skills, sequenced as steps, simplify and summarize the most important research on creative thinking and draw on over thirty years of real-world application in some of the most innovative organizations in the world.

It's time to rethink the way we make innovation happen. Individual creativity is an immense untapped resource, and you don't have to be Beethoven to make a big difference. As the spirit of chef Gusteau proclaims in the Pixar classic Ratatouille, "Anyone can cook."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781523090150
Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers
Publication date: 09/29/2020
Pages: 168
Sales rank: 409,133
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Jeff DeGraff is a clinical professor of management and organizations at the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and is an advisor to Fortune 500 companies—including General Electric, Coca-Cola, Google, Mercedes-Benz, and many more. He has written several books, including The Innovation Code, Innovation You, Creativity at Work, and Leading Innovation, and his thoughts on innovation are regularly covered by Inc., Fortune, and Psychology Today. He has a regular segment on public radio called The Next Idea. Staney DeGraff is CEO of Innovatrium, a laboratory and consulting firm specializing in developing innovation ecosystems. She is the coauthor of The Innovation Code.

Table of Contents

Preface ix

Introduction: Demystifying Creativity 1

Chapter 1 What Is the Creative Mindset? 11

Chapter 2 Clarify: Getting the Challenge Right 19

Chapter 3 Replicate: Mimicking and Reapplying Ideas 39

Chapter 4 Elaborate: Multiplying Ideas by Adding New Ones 67

Chapter 5 Associate: Connecting Ideas with Analogies 89

Chapter 6 Translate: Creating Stories from Ideas 127

Chapter 7 Evaluate: Selecting the Best Ideas 161

Chapter 8 Putting It All Together 179

References 185

Acknowledgments 187

Index 189

About the Authors 195

Discussion Guide 199

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