Friday, November 25, 2011

When being Innovative is more important than being Creative

I had some time to think things through this 'debate' the last couple of days, on what makes somebody creative or innovative. And perhaps the debate on whether it is more important to be creative, or innovative. The debate seems to stem from the idea that I had that there should be a balance between the two, especially in my approaches towards teaching my charges this idea of 'creativity versus innovation'. But could there really be only one thing that one should focus on, in order to give that sense of value-addedness? 

I was reminded the other time about how Apple is not necessarily the most creative company in the world. A case in point was that they were NOT the ones who invented the portable digital music player, nor the mouse, and neither the tablet. But what they did to the idea of
  • how a portable digital music player should be part of an 'ecosystem', 
  • how a mouse should operate buttonlessly and 
  • how a tablet should look like and be experienced with multi-touches and gestures...
now...these are indeed examples of innovation. Yes they were not original ideas, nor their overarching concepts of working totally original, but the very fact that they have managed to leverage on an existing design concept, and work on how to transform these elements into a 'disruptive' tool to the current status that's innovation at its finest.
So perhaps creativity does have its place in the whole scheme of things, but in order for things to get really moving, and exciting, the innovative piece of the puzzle must also be present, and in order. And then perhaps...just perhaps, things could move along along a more 'disruptive' mode!

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