Friday, 16 November 2012

Getting and Developing an Innovative Mind

INNOVATIVE:  New and creative, especially in the way that something is done. Innovative minds simply means minds that are capable of coming up with new ideas of how to accomplish the normal daily tasks that are done in order to make life easier. It’s also a way of maximizing profit while minimizing cost, something that is so crucial in our modern society and career world in General.
Depending on one’s career there are so many ways that you can appear as creative and innovative without necessarily having to invent an entirely new tool of trade or concept. Many people have a lot of concern and misconception on what it entails to have an innovative mind. Being the founder and the administrator of a Facebook group Innovative minds I am going to try and help people to understand the concept of having an Innovative mind. The concepts can also apply to anyone else in this life too.
Depending on your career line the ways may vary, so read and try to reflect and suit the ways of having an innovative mind as per your career line and your lifestyle.

A Graphical Depiction of an Innovative Mind.

Time management is an essential ingredient of having an Innovative Mind.
  1. Always be on time for any appointment and if you have to be late, make it a point of calling to inform your colleague why you think you are going to be late.
  2. Try as much as possible to adhere to normal times as stipulated in company’s policies. This way you will discover that you are able to accomplish a lot of task at hand within the specified times.
  3. Do the right things at the right time i.e. stick to task at hand, do not waste your work time with office politics, gossips, online activities, etc.
  4.  Avoid working overtime unless it is absolutely necessary. Make it a point of having times to relax, re-energize so that you do not burn out your energy and get less productive.

This is the natural ability to do something well.
  1. Strive to discover your talents and stick to careers that make maximum use of your talents.
  2. Enhance and polish your talent through acquiring knowledge and skills.
  3. Attend talent shows or if unable, form a habit of watching and reading articles that elaborate the use of talents from various people and get to discover the secret behind their successful use of their talents. Read about how a new tool of trade was invented or how a new concept came about and in this way you will have an idea of how to be innovative.
  4. Form a network of friends who you share common interests, talents, abilities and learn from each other. Rule: DO NOT be selfish with your abilities.
  5. Try to be in a career that rhymes with your hobbies. This will make your job more enjoyable and it will encourage you to explore more in your area of specialization. Chances are that you will discover new ways of doing things.

  1. Stick to the truth of the matter, maintain a moral integrity that is beyond reproof, and be fair to everyone around you. Why? You may ask…Whenever you maintain good morals, people are bound to love and trust you. When people get to trust you, chances are that you will be in a better position to present to them new ideas and they will readily accept them and support you. Moreover, you also get the chance to be able to ask for help to explore your ideas since people will readily co-operate with someone they like and they know he is likely to come up with a helpful idea.
  2. Be honest to yourself by i.e. set for yourself realistic goals that you are able to achieve to avoid disappointments, believe in yourself, and acknowledge your strengths and weaknesses. Concentrate your energies in areas that you are strong in and try avoiding situations that display your weaknesses.
  3. Do not take failures and setbacks personally but let them serve as milestones to success. If you try a new concept and it fails, challenge yourself, do more study about it, see where you failed and tackle it from a different angle next time.
  4. If you are presented with a problem that you don’t know a solution e.g. by your boss or changing market trends and dynamic technological trends, admit that you don’t know but don’t stop there, go ahead and do more research and be sure to solve the problem if it reappears again. I.e. those who are really good in IT have perfected the art of keeping pace with changing technology trends.

  1. Understand and find solutions to your own problems. Do not form a habit of having people always having to help your out on personal issues. In this way, you will develop the mental strength that will enable you to be able to come up with solutions to broader perspectives of life e.g. career, work related etc you can hardly manage others if you cannot manage yourself.
  2. Before seeking to provide a solution to a problem, make sure you have thorough knowledge of the problem at hand, i.e. perform a complete and detailed feasibility study of the problem before proposing a solution.
  3. Weigh the impact of your solution or new ideas to yourself, people around you and your career in general. This is to avoid coming up with a solution that is a problem on its own. This is normally called “Cost -  Benefit Analysis”

  1. Always show courtesy, friendliness and consideration for other people. This way, if you propose a new idea to people they are highly likely to accept it since they trust that you have their best interest at hand.
  2. Always choose your words and actions to suit the situation, avoid this proverbial scenario, “Selling umbrellas in summer”. Make sure your new innovative idea suits the current situation and comes when it is mostly needed. E.g. developing a new complex Excel function would be so handy at the time when sales people are doing an analysis into determining the profit margin of their sales.
  3. Nice also involves being physically smart and presentable. Learn the art of dressing to suit the situation. E.g. Office wears. One would hardly expect a useful innovative idea from someone who is not smart in attire from the hypothetical judgment that he may not be smart brain wise.

The saying goes, “Knowledge is Light, Knowledge is power etc”.
  1. Form the habit of acquiring knowledge through reading widely, keen observation, proper and timely experimentations and consultations. Seek knowledge whenever it may be found.
  2. Strive to know most or all basic facts, ideas, truth, and principles governing your area of specialty. Be an expert.
  3. Get to know all that can be known concerning your career line, this will help you to be able to come up with new ideas from what you already know. A new idea may simply be a mixture of other related facts that gets integrated and thus forming a completely new way of accomplishing things. E.g. equipping yourself with new ICT skills may help you discover new ways of accomplishing daily tasks of your specialty.
  4.  Familiarize yourself with your tools of trade, how they are used and their basic technical details.
  5. Make use of Internet to explore and research on anything that you think of. Also interact online with people from all over the world who are in your career line. Simply bringing in an acquired knowledge from your online friend into your daily office work may make you seem as innovative to your boss and your colleagues.
  6. Signup for blog sites, knowledge sharing email lists, academic related websites, social networking groups that speaks about your areas of specialization etc and get to learn from people who you have common interests.

  1. Form a habit of reading widely and extensively. Read novels and literature to enhance your literally skills. The same may help you learn business English and also English that is related to your career line.
  2. Read magazines, journals, articles, online forums that talk and discuss concepts related to your career line.
  3. Concentrate on constructive reading. Form a habit of writing about what you learn. You can even opt to save your short notes as Facebook documents which your friend may be able to access.
  4. Always note down somewhere the most knowledgeable books that you read. You may need them later for reference.
  5. Read inspirational, motivational and self-development books. They help someone to acquire knowledge on having and maintaining a positive mind.

  1. When it comes to the area of knowledge and specialization, get to know as much as possible about it.
  2. Get polished facts and always have them at your finger tips. The only way to having an understanding of this point is volunteering to teach those around you. This may be in seminars, or even when you are interacting with your colleagues in your place of work.
  3. Learn how to explain complex aspects of your job to a layman; that is to someone who has no idea of what you do. Reserve technical jargons to those who deserve.
  4. Keep and maintain pace with the changing trends of your job. E.g. if you are in accounting, keep pace of the changes in accounting laws, a pharmacist can keep trend of the latest drugs, etc
  5. The golden rule here is, strive for perfection.
  6. Learn all principles governing your area of specialization; master the rules of your specialization e.g. mathematical rules, business rules, philosophy rules, psychological impacts of your career to the society, organizational benefits of your career, state laws that govern your trade etc.

This point is irrelevant to atheists, but for the theists, you should realize that God is the real source of power, knowledge and wisdom.
  1. Remember to pray and give thanks to God in every situation.
  2. Always pray to God to give you guidance in all that you desire to do, and may what you aspire to do be in accordance to God’s will. Pray for strength.
  3. Always reserve time for God. Read the bible/Quran. Form a habit of adhering to God’s rules of nature, of spiritual life and morality.
  4. Make sure you rest and dedicate to God the day of worship.
  5. Remember, God is in control, we are in charge.

The Difference between Invention and Innovation
Many people, without thinking, use the two words interchangeably and, I would argue, inappropriately. When one thinks of an invention, one thinks of a shiny whiz-bang new product based on some sexy new technology to do something new or do something better. A handheld GPS device is an invention. Something that is entirely new.
An innovation is a higher level, more conceptual success that may be developed around an invention, but is something that really serves a customer need and delivers customer value in excess of what it costs, that is, net customer value. A GPS device that uses a well-designed global GPS system to deliver the right information customers need when they need it at a reasonable price is an innovation.

Innovation is simply learning and discovering new and more productive ways of utilizing an invention.

For more on Innovative tricks and Ideas join our Facebook Group INNOVATIVE MINDS.
You can also follow my blog INNOVATIVE MINDS
Here you will continue getting regular updates on innovative tips in this life of anything imaginable. Feel free to be a member and a regular contributer so as we can share knowledge to the world. Welcome. 
Recommended reading:-
  1. THINK BIG by Ben Carson
  2. Boost your self – Esteem by John Caunt
 Have an Innovative Day ahead of you.

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