As each day comes and goes we often find ourselves just going through the motions as a means to get through them. We wake up, go to work, come home, and repeat. It’s a cycle that’s tough to break and while it may seem robotic from the outside, to you it’s just another day. Unfortunately, these types of mental slumps all but shut down our ability to spark creativity.
One of the biggest factors in our continuous improvement journey is our ability to think outside the box and be creative with our decision making. We get so caught up in our daily practices that we often forget how important it is to keep an open mind and free ourselves from the walls that hinder our creative thought.
Breaking down these walls however, doesn’t come easy. You need the tools to in place and the willingness to let yourself go at times. I find it odd that we often are told to “be creative.” If it was only that easy! It’s not a switch that we can just turn on when we clock in. There is no magic button we can press to instantly become creative, but we can arm ourselves with the tools necessary to help inspire creativity.
Everybody has a creative potential and from the moment you can express this creative potential you can start to change the world.
-Paulo Coelho, lyricist and novelist
Kaizen Guide: Better your business with continuous improvement
To be successful, you can’t make an improvement once and forget about it. Effective lean businesses use kaizen, which means “continuous improvement”. In kaizen, everyone looks for ways to improve processes on a daily basis. This Kaizen Guide explains the kaizen mindset, basic kaizen concepts including the PDCA cycle, and real-world examples.
Ideas To Help Bring Out Your Creative Spirit
- Get outside: Sometimes you just need to get out. Instead of eating lunch everyday in the break room or even worse, your office, take a walk outside. Nature as a way of inspiring us and opening up our minds to new ideas. Next time you’re working through a problem and feel like you’re in a mental rut, take a walk and clear your mind of any obstacles that lay in your way.
- Capture your ideas: Ideas come at all times of the day. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve woken up in the middle of the night and thought of a way to solve a current issue, only to fall back asleep and forget it by morning. Keep a notebook by your side at all times or for those with smartphones, download one of the many free note taking apps out there. I am currently using Evernote and have found it to be an amazing tool to capture my thoughts and creativity.
- Collaborate instead of isolate: Don’t ever be afraid to bounce ideas off your co-workers. Not only will this expand your creative thought process, but it will also inspire others to do the same. Harvesting a culture that feels comfortable collaborating with one another is essential to continuous improvement and the creative spirit of the team.
In order to put yourself in a position to be creative, you have to ultimately just be you. Everyone is different when it comes to what makes us tick, but we all have the potential to be as creative as we allow ourselves to be. You should never be afraid of an idea or solution to a problem that may seem out of the ordinary. Thinking out side the box and thinking through those out of the ordinary solutions is what sets a apart those who continuously improve every day and those who struggle to get over the hump.
Telling people how to be creative is easy, its only being it that’s difficult.
- 10 Commandments to Continuous Improvement
- 8 Keys to Designing a Lean Facility
- The Improvement Kata: Part 1
- The Improvement Kata: Part 3
- Getting Things Done and Lean
- The Gemba Walk
- What is a Kaizen event?
- What is a Gemba walk? [Lean Manufacturing Definition]– creativesafetysupply.com
- Training the Adult Mind– safetyblognews.com
- An Engaged Employee is a Productive Employee– kaizen-news.com
- 10 Commandments For Continuous Growth– creativesafetypublishing.com
- Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) Explained– blog.creativesafetysupply.com
- What is Gemba & How it Can Benefit Your Facility– iecieeechallenge.org
- 5S Supplies You Need: Foam Organizers– 5snews.com