Innovation can be defined as a new idea, device or method according to Merriam Webster. Creativity is an important element in the development of a new idea, device or method.
What does it take to be creative?
Creativity can mean many things to different people. At its core, it means potential originality and effectiveness. Creativity often comes naturally, but it is also a trait that can be taught and nurtured through education and play.
Factors that play into one’s ability to think creatively include a willingness to ask questions, the ability to tolerate ambiguity and risk and the capacity to approach failure as a clue to the next step (or as a clue to reach the desired result). These skills are taught through science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education, which focuses on hands-on experience with real-life application.
These abilities, among many others, allow individuals to consider problems and find potential solutions that result in new ideas, devices or methods.
Why is innovation important?
Innovation and invention drive our economy, as one innovation fuels the next. Change and progress are key results of innovation.
Consider Mary Engle Pennington, a National Inventors Hall of Fame® (NIHF) Inductee whose innovations pioneered the safe preservation, handling and storage of food. Her work impacted the health and well-being of generations of Americans. Look at the impact of Victor Lawrence, a NIHF Inductee who improved the transmission and stimulated the growth of the modern internet. Think of NIHF Inductee Stan Honey, who invented the Virtual Yellow 1st & Ten® line, dramatically impacting the viewing experience for millions of sports fans. While these are only three examples, these individuals saw challenges and created innovative solutions that significantly influenced not only their fields, but the American and even world population.
Creativity is important in innovation.
There are many problems facing our world, from minor daily inconveniences to major economic challenges. Future stability and success are dependent on younger generations embracing creativity and innovation to create the solutions needed to drive our world forward.
Interested in learning more about how to prepare future generations? Download our white paper on How to Prepare the Next Generation of Entrepreneurs today!