Creativity is essential in strategy development, especially in times of uncertainty and ambiguity. It isn’t merely a matter of applying creativity during a specific step or using it to complete a discrete task. A one-off activity won’t lead you to discover your organization’s unique differentiators or design a strategy to convert your Differentiation Zone into a future direction.
You need a process steeped in originality, where creative thinking and imagination produce a through-line from start to finish. That’s why I created Differentiation Zone. As you’ll learn in Differentiated:
- Creative thinking fueled the realization that you compete in more than one industry. As we see with the Children’s Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus, the old boundaries no longer apply.
- The ability to picture something new led to the Zone of Indifference, the recognition that your customer is indifferent to things you hold dear, as we observe with Swallow Hill Music.
- Creative thinking lies at the core of a customer mindset. You can’t embrace both the head and the heart without empathy and imagination. Your charge is to “be the customer,” as we learn with The Logan School.
Strategists need to think outside of the box. Without imagination, it is more challenging to recognize the distinctive and convert differentiation into a competitive advantage. All the data in the world won’t get you there. Just ask Steve Jobs.
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