SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 21

PersPectives
That isn't bad, but it is still a bit obtuse. But then, I guess creativity itself is a bit obtuse. So I decided to sit down
and attack the problem as a series of interrogatories. In my musings I created some questions that I hope will
stimulate dialog. Try to not to merely read the questions. Read them and think of your response to each of the
questions.
* Is creativity a talent?

* Is creativity a strength?

* Is creativity a weakness?

* Is creativity pragmatic?

* Is creativity genetic?

* Is creativity learned?

* Is creativity a process?

* Is creativity focused?

* Is creativity a symptom?

* Is creativity the disease?
"Well I can't really define creativity but I know it when I see it," you might say. Okay, how do we recognize it? What
are the traits we look for in "creativity"?
In an attempt to paint a circle around creativity I created another list. This list is less of an attempt to describe the
spark of creativity than it is to show its manifestations. It is also my list: Highly personal, a little bit whimsical and
certainly up for disagreement and - dialog. As you read this list, think of how each item matches up with your
perceptions of creativity.
Creativity is . . .
*. . . outside the box.

*. . . playful.

*. . . obtuse.

*. . . straight forward.

*. . . simple.

*. . . complex.

*. . . its own reward.

*. . . worthy of sacrificing what others hold dear.

*. . . a series of "aha!" moments.

*. . . illumination from outside the visible spectrum.

*. . . revelatory.

*. . . a way of connecting the dots to form a different picture.

*. . . a way of approaching something by walking around it. Or away from it.
*. . . exclusive and personal rather than universal.

*. . . a gift.

*. . . something that can be cultivated.
What questions would you add to the first list? What comments would you add to the second list? In reality I have
not tried to answer the question, "What is creativity".
Instead I have tried to tiptoe around the definition
of creativity in a way that would allow us a fluid
appreciation of the subject.
In truth I haven't even attempted to answer my friend's
second question. For now, the first question is enough.
While one side of my brain wants to grapple its way to
conclusions, the other side is content to merely enjoy
savoring the subject.
And how does this ultimately fit into the original article
about the importance of creativity to our industry? I
would like to end this column the same way I typically
start all of them: With a quote. These words were taken
from the conclusion of "The Feedstocks Prism", a report
published by Deloitte in February 2015. In a more sterile
tone, it stated the need for creativity in our business
practices when it said,
"a new approach is needed and new questions need to be asked.
It is not about looking at the same problems in the same ways
and hoping that new solutions emerge. Instead, companies need
to find new ways of looking at old problems . . . breaking with
convention will make for better decisions. And better decisions
lead to better performance."
Ah, creativity!
SAMPE Journal, Volume 52, No. 4, July/August 2016

21


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016

Contents
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - Cover1
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - Cover2
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - Contents
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 2
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 3
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 4
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 5
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 6
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 7
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 8
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 9
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 10
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 11
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 12
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 13
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 14
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 15
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 16
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 17
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 18
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 19
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 20
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 21
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 22
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SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 25
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 26
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 27
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 28
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SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 30
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SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 33
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 34
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 35
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - 36
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SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - Cover3
SAMPE Journal - July/August 2016 - Cover4
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