ResearchEnglishCreative Innovation

Enhancing Creativity – First Step to Innovation

Author: Elisabeta Butoi


It is commonly accepted nowadays that to achieve performance companies strive to innovate in this constantly changing economic environment. Therefore, it is a necessity for each manager to know how to increase employees’ creativity in order to have sufficient and brilliant ideas for solving problems in innovative ways. This paper underlines the positive and negative factors influencing creativity from an individual, group and organizational perspective. Enhancing creativity within each organization member involves understanding of what creativity is, how it relates to physical, psychological and social influences and to understand how creativity happens. Creativity has its stages and factors required to release the innovative idea. As every innovation process starts with an idea, understanding what influences the mind and how the idea appears is crucial for individual and organizational performance.


The current economic situation is challenging companies to look for new ways to performance, like using creativity for driving to significant changes realized by organization’s members, those in search for more efficient ways to accomplish success (Mayfield, M., 2009).Today’s goal of every company should be to enhance a creative environment (Sloane, P.,
3Technical University of Cluj-Napoca, 2006). Moving from one state to another through innovative changes is the key for success (Martnes, Y., 2011). Literature often speaks about creativity when discussing entrepreneurial dimension, which is a key feature to identify opportunities. Divergent thinking, generating ideas, finding solutions in a creative manner are required to keep on being competitive. Adaptation to environmental changes, the use of opportunities, keeping market position, are possible through the creative contribution of each member dedicated to organization vision and customer satisfaction (Hansen, D.J., Lumpkin, G.T., Gerald, E., 2011).

A particularly useful activity for the economy proves to be the ability to turn creative ideas into an innovative product. Therefore ideas generation is essential and request special attention. Moreover maintenance of a creative environment is a task for managers in order to foster an innovative organization, this requires understanding of creativity determinants and creativity process (Klijn, M., Tomic, W., 2010).

Creativity role in innovation process

Innovation means creating value through problem solving, creativity process being indispensable, also knowledge is requested to make better choices,to hence the need for lifelong learning is a demand too (Sehested, C., Sonnenberg, H., 2011). There are different types of innovation process, but in a basic form, innovation process takes place in three stages: idea generation, idea promotion and idea implementation (Paulsen, N., Maldonado, D., Callan, V.J., Ayoko, O., 2009). Every step is important and is essential in order to gain innovation. Idea generation is the stage when each person expressing those creative ideas is building the basement of innovation. The innovation, design by creativity minds, sustained by learning, and this in turn to meditation, influences the organization performance (Ho, L., 2011).

Creativity is considered the idea generation process that will lead to innovative ideas for organization performance (Sousa, C.M.P., Coelho, F., 2011), it is a function of personal values, organization commitment and customer orientation (Hansen, D.J., Lumpkin, G.T., Gerald, E., 2011).

The organization in which the diverse creativity is manifested by each member, recognizing innovation as a way to meet the customers’ demands,
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applies innovation as a tool for performance. Creativity does not come out just in the high level of organization, but from every member practicing it. Looking for new ways of doing things will refresh the organization, but this is possible just where organization policies are not a barrier for creativity rewarding only the rules. Each person has a proper name, which identifies his uniqueness and in the working place that person will find the unique way to carry out activities (Mayfield, M., 2009).


This study attempts to contribute to the growing knowledge in the individual and organizational creativity aspects. Innovation is widely recognized as a tool for organization to be competitive.

As every innovation process starts with an idea, understanding what influences the mind and how the idea appears is crucial for individual and organizational purposes. An abundance of innovative ideas is a willingness of innovation management, therefore entertaining a creative environment in each organization is an issue (Sloane, P., 2006). Creative ideas are like the basement on which the innovation will be built.

Resuming the determinants of creativity, a creative environment could be sustained through: learning, knowledge, meditation, stimulation, universalism, benevolence, self-control, motivation, skills, position in company, social status, experience, education, temperament, confidence, empowerment, freedom, collaboration, learning, meditation, support, level of testosterone, spaces for concentration and communication, organizational commitment, customer orientation, common spaces and private spaces, climate group, feature of open group, informal interaction between members, a dynamic, funny and confident environment. A dynamic, funny and confident environment influences positively creativity. There are underline some factors having a destructive influence on creativity: deadlines, conservatism, tradition, achievement, power, anxiety, comparing with others, irony, mockery, criticism and conflicts.

The relation between workplace and creativity is crucial for every organization. The workplace has social-psychological dimensions as people perceive different the same workplace. Understanding the physical aspects and their meaning and relation with people perceptions is essentially to lean creative thinking (Martnes, Y., 2011).
Organization culture should entertain the employees’ creativity, but sometimes just by rules, processes, systems, structures, strategies and polices can be an obstacle through its rigidity (Klijn, M., Tomic, W., 2010).

Creativity process is defined as a sum of steps described in various ways by diverse creativity models, but a specific feature of creative process is self-forgetfulness, flow, unaware of space, the state when the person is fully involved and time no longer has its place (Klijn, M., Tomic, W., 2010). The creative process is crowned by the appearance of that “aha” moment in which the idea is realized.

This research emphasizes the importance of creativity determinants related to physical, social and psychological influences, and creativity process. All these features are necessary in order to cultivate a creative environment in each organization. Enhancing creativity through self- efficacy of each member of an organization welcomes innovation to develop.
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This paper was supported by the project “Improvement of the doctoral studies quality in engineering science for development of the knowledge based society – Q_DOC”, ID: POSDRU/107/ 1.5/S/78534, project co- funded by the European Social Fund through the Sectorial Operational Program Human Resources 2007-2013.

Enhancing Creativity – First Step to Innovation (PDF Download Available). Available from:


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