Creative Intelligence


Defining 'Creative Intelligence'

The world is changing fast, meaning that conventional methods for dealing with problems have now become outdated. In the era of social media, with new connections just a click away, it is not enough to be good at what you do, you must also be innovative, adopt a hands-on attitude and, above all, be creative. It is even more important to have the ability to manage your creativity in conjunction with intelligence, which is nothing more than understanding the nature and meaning of things. From this, we can find solutions to problems and build knowledge based on learning experiences. One cannot say that intelligence and creativity are the same thing, but what if we could combine these two capacities into one, how would it be?

Setting goals and using creativity to achieve them

The difference between the two concepts, which are essential in conflict resolution and also in the creation of something new, lies in the fact that intelligence is aimed at perfecting the ideas that already exist, within the mission of achieving a goal. On the other hand, creativity is responsible for creating new paths and/or combining existing ones. Bruce Nussbaum, an innovative expert and author of 'Creative Intelligence: Harnessing the Power to Create, Connect, and Inspire' (2013) defines creative intelligence as a social quality that leverages our creativity as we learn from others and act in a collaborative way. It generates an ability to frame problems in new ways and come up with unique solutions. By way of example, let’s consider something practical: mobile phones. At some point in history, a highly creative individual was responsible for turning the phone talk experience around, by making the mobile phone possible. And intelligence, in this case, was, and still is, responsible for the steady improvement of the technology.

How can we boost our Creative Intelligence?

A good first step is to stop and think about what you are good at. Most of us are not aware of our own abilities, we do not see how we can connect the skills from one field to another. By framing our skills differently, we can use them in countless creative ways in order to make the most of our resources.

According to Bruce Nussbaum, creative intelligence has five different competencies that can be useful to individuals and organizations, namely:

1 - Highly creative people are skilled at connecting information from various sources in new and surprising ways. Creative entrepreneurs, thinkers and artists use their own experiences and aspirations as a starting point for dreaming about new things. When their own experience is insufficient, they go straight to the source and strike up partnerships with people who are more involved in that theme than they are.

2 - Understanding your frame of reference - your way of looking at the world compared to others - is critical, regardless of your aspirations or the area in which you operate in the market. People who understand this skill are more able to change their perspectives depending on the situation, environment or community with which they are interacting.

3 - We associate games and play activities with children, but this is how scientists and engineers discover solutions to their challenges. By having a playful attitude, we are more willing to take risks, explore possibilities and learn to walk through uncertainty, without the stigma of failure.

4 - We are experiencing the "rebirth of doing." People really want to do things again, and thanks to a host of new technologies and the democratization of creativity tools, this is being done.

5 - Traditional notions of creativity separate the process of arriving at a new idea from the second stage, which is to put it into practice effectively. Highly creative people do not stop at the ideas stage: they quickly start executing them.
Therefore in a world as challenging and fast-moving as ours, it is of the utmost importance that we can work using our various skills together to meet ever greater challenges – and not only in the professional field, but also in our personal lives and in relationships. Dynamism, creativity and intelligence were never as important as they are today.

by Matheus Graziano, Freelancer


  • Bruce Nussbaum, Creative Intelligence: Harnessing the Power to Create, Connect, and Inspire
  • Daniel Sperb, About Creative Intelligence
Tony Buzan, The Power of Creative Intelligence

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