Innovative or adaptive creativity

It is important today to let out the secret behind the concept of my billionaires mentor that I often refer to, he is not just one man, he is the cumulative experience of my many “egbon’s” in and outside the printing industry. He portrays experience, radiate wisdom and grace and ever ready to teach with his life and work. I was on the table having breakfast with billionaire mentor and his wife setting the tone by bringing up the discussion they had the day before. Wife asked my billionaire mentor who among the children will he will the printing press to? I believe the day before they had discussions on what his will was to look like.

Millionaire mentor replied saying “If I don’t die suddenly, I will ensure the printing press is sold before I die”, he looked at me and as though he could read my mind asking for more explanation he continued “No child will understand how I make money from the press, I did set it up with an intention and It will be wicked to burden any innocent child on how to start figuring this out, I believe that any printing press must be started with clear intention of what needs they are to meet. If any child is interested in a printing, I will help him or her start their own but won’t leave mine for them”.

My billionaire mentor has displayed his ability in innovative creativity and I personally always amazed by the accuracy of his business acumen.

Creativity is the act of conceiving something new, whether a variation on a theme or something wholly new. Innovation is the act of putting something new into practice…

Consequently, Innovative creativity refers to thinking that results in new (innovative) solutions. To understand how graphics designers who usually set the pace for innovative creativity think, we can look at’s perspective; As much as we like to fancy ourselves as forward-thinking, rational beings, we’re still deeply entrenched in the delight that comes from sensory experiences. It is wisdom to use this to your advantage in your sales and marketing materials; going beyond the standard rectangular business card or tri-fold brochure and proceeding to where no graphic designer has ever gone before is actually the new cool. Like giving new meaning to finishing (die cut or coating effect), meaning you have the finishing in mind while you put together the graphics or some standing out design using pop ups, meaning that beyond business cards, you can create 3D popup print designs within pamphlets, books, posters, brochures etc. Popping out your logo, an illustration of your target customer, an announcement, or a representation of your product or service will give you super traction and this is an example of innovative creativity.

Once upon a time, Computer to Plate (CTP) was a technology that broke down the tedious steps of making films which are then exposed to plate. CTP does so by eliminating many steps to get the plates directly, quickly and quite easily.

Innovative creative thinkers try to do things differently. They are opinion molding in nature and hate to conform to status quo. They most often create original ideas that are more likely to challenge paradigms. Those who are innovatively creative approach problems from unusual perspectives, they are skilled at discovering problems, they uncover them and loves to question the almighty status quo surrounding such problems. Research however thinks that they are often insensitive to the plight of others and by so they tend to be greatly misunderstood. They usually walk alone like the biblical voice of one crying in a wilderness but eventually they pull through and tend to recruit more people as results begin to appear. The innovative creative thinkers are highly result oriented, great risk takers and pioneers in their own rights.

Some Benefits of this approach includes;

  • Increased competitiveness – Offering higher quality, more efficiently and most times at a lower cost eventually.
  • Improved staff retention – Staff – especially younger ones – like to work in jobs that promote teamwork and use extreme problem solving approach. They just like the intrigue that comes with the “rise up and go” command that is frequently beckoning at them in such organization.
  • Proactive approach to business – Your business is able to keep up with changes (technological and ideological) in the industry.
  • Promotes new partnerships and relationships – Innovation usually attracts people from various works which snowballs into fresh business relationships.

In case there are those thinking of using the innovative creativity approach to create new frontiers for their printing businesses, below are some thoughts to consider;

  1. Business that speaks to trends and lifestyle, like textile printing or labeling and packaging
  2. Education and training, those who know should be brought in contact with those who don’t, in a formally or informally arrangement to help pass down knowledge that will not only help to improve the quality of decision making but also give excellent results in print production, business management and leadership.
  3. Research and development, very important to help the industry follow or stay ahead of market trends and expand the value chain for greater market share in other industries where printing as a services is needed. In fact some researches will help create those market share in the pull marketing space.

It is certain that everyone can’t be like my billionaire mentor, so if you already have a business running and it needs some touch up due to the pandemic, economic situation, lack of patronage or the business is simply obeying the law of diminishing returns, then you might want to up your adaptive creativity attributes.

Adaptive creativity refers to thinking that applies existing solutions, techniques, or products to newly induced scenarios or conditions. Unlike the innovative creative thinkers who try to do things differently, the Adaptive counterparts tries doing things better, by creating original ideas that are more likely to fit the existing paradigms.
Their style is to apply a disciplined systematic approach, by wanting to solve (rather than identify) problems, they put measures in place to refine current practices, with fresh energy on the team or group.
Personally I believe that we have a lot of adaptive creative colleagues who already are building hybrid printing systems like combining offset with digital printing in their various setup.

In this times of apparent confusion and uncertainty which has been induced by a pandemic that has forced the economy of many seemingly strong nation into decline, there has been an equal and opposite reaction of uncoordinated rebellion that man’s adaptive nature has provoked. Imagine that COVID vaccination are already out. This signifies that indeed creativity is the greatest rebellion in existence.

In any case it is what you know that will influence your conviction and persuasion, so to respond to this innovative or adaptive needs we all need to dig deeper for more relevant knowledge, yesterday’s knowledge is not longer working…

It’s time for a creative rebellion!

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