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You are here: News » Archived News » Creativity: The Fuel Powering UK PLC

Creativity: The Fuel Powering UK PLC

Theo Paphitis

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Column by Theo Paphitis

Something that continues to surprise me today is the number of people I come across who don’t back themselves enough, and this is especially true when it comes to the subject of creativity.

Let me burst your bubble – there’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to creativity, and many people don’t realise that they themselves are in fact creative, in their own unique way. If you approach the process of creativity piece by piece, idea by idea, you will suddenly find yourself with heaps more creative juice and opportunities right in front of you!

‘Being creative’ is a term that is regularly thrown about and all too often prompts Marmite-like responses, with many instinctively declaring themselves as being uncreative, usually out of lack of confidence in this area; the end result sadly being that they refuse to engage in what they perceive as ‘out of their comfort zone’. Describing someone as being creative is something that is all too often confused with the ability to come up with completely unique and revolutionary ideas that haven’t been dreamt up before.

Now, I don’t think anyone has had a completely unique idea in a very, very long time.

I’ve certainly never had an original idea in my life, and I think I’m in a position where I can say I’ve enjoyed some success in my journey so far. What I have done though, is spotted other people’s ideas, had a play about with them and sometimes realised that I could implement them better – creativity can often be about spotting an opportunity and having the nous to build upon it. When it comes to getting the creative juices flowing, something that I find really helps me is taking inspiration from the world around me.

Whether it’s overhearing someone’s conversation on the street or it’s spotting something on the news – I’ll think ‘I like the sound of that’ and consider it more and more, until finally, I get to the point where I’ve tweaked and tweaked it so much that, hey presto, suddenly it’s turned into something!

Now, I can hear you saying – ‘but Theo, when do I reach the point where I need to validate an idea?’ That is good and is exactly how you should be thinking. Whether it’s designing a new product or it’s something else – every idea is different. The important thing is that you do your homework, and ask yourself the basic questions like who, what and why. Then, and only then, are you ready to get your idea validated by other people.

But it’s important that you don’t just canvas your family and friends. Authenticate your ideas with people who will be honest with you, not just those who will give you lip service. Ultimately, everyone, and I mean everyone, can be creative.

Just like in football, people play in all sorts of leagues and at differing levels – but that’s not to say that they’re not still playing! So whether you’re an entrepreneur, a professional or someone in education – back yourself and don’t listen to the naysayers who say that ‘you’re too this’ or ‘too that’.

Treat the world as your canvas and source of inspiration, because if you take your idea step by step, creativity is your oyster.

#SBS Small Business Sunday logo

Theo Paphitis – Small Business Sunday #SBS
If you’re a small business then check out Theo’s free-to-enter #SBS Small Business Sunday competition which runs every Sunday between 5 – 7.30pm on X and Instagram – a free boost for small businesses with ambitions to grow and a chance to join one of the UK’s small business communities. Further information is here: theopaphitissbs.com

 

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