Why learning professionals need to nurture their creativity
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Creativity is a high value skill, and all businesses should be looking to future-proof their people with the skills they need to sail through the fourth industrial revolution, and research agrees that creativity comes on top.
Creativity is the driving skill behind change, transformation and innovation so it makes sense that in our VUCA world, businesses are prioritising their people’s development in this area. And the same should be said for the learning industry.
If we learnt anything in 2018, it’s that transformation is key to the future of learning success, and if creativity is a key part of driving transformation, it’s a skill we should all be coveting.
As a learning professional, you might have found yourself developing the skills of your learners first and yourself last, and I’m sure you’re not alone in this. L&D have a pretty established reputation for favouring the development of others over themselves.
Creative thinking not only means more innovative ideas, but it can help you widen the scope of what you are achieving and how you can achieve it.
So, before the year gets going and we’re drawn into the fast pace of everyday life, I want to take a step back and explore what benefits learning professionals could get if they nurture their creativity in 2019:
Transformation is all about letting go of what has worked well in the past, by not resting on your laurels repeating the same plans and processes over and over again. Now, if you’re not used to change this prospect might seem a bit daunting, especially if you’re planning on driving change yourself!
Luckily, having a bit of creative thinking in your back pocket can make all the difference. Creative thinking not only means more innovative ideas, but it can help you widen the scope of what you are achieving and how you can achieve it.
Creative problem solving really is an essential skill. It can help you analyse your current situation better, and encourages sideways thinking, so you can come up with new and unexpected solutions.
Problem solving also leads to big picture thinking, which is a crucial part of leading transformation. It can help expand your awareness of where you are now, how you got there, and ultimately, what it is you need to do to get to where you want to go.
Taking risks is the next logical step; you’ve got the idea from thinking creatively, you’ve linked it with your current situation, all that’s left is taking the risk that makes it all happen. Even if it doesn’t work out how you originally intended, being able to understand the success in failure will help you to keep taking risks and trying new things.
Letting go of what has worked well in past is a risk in itself, so encouraging risk-taking through creativity is actually a good thing.
Unlocking meaningful results is a priority for our industry. Towards Maturity’s benchmark has repeatedly shown that L&D is standing still, unable to achieve goals year-on-year. Change is clearly needed, as the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
With creativity, comes the understanding that the best results comes from the most innovative strategies. Shaking up the status quo is what will help you drive transformation and get the most meaningful results, that will ultimately make a real difference to your organisation.
Start 2019 with a plan to nurture your own creativity, and by this time next year you will be well on your way to driving transformation and unlocking real and meaningful results for your organisation. And it’s almost guaranteed that creativity will be a coveted skill in industry 4.0, so now is the perfect time to add it to your personal development checklist.
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