Innovation leads to the death of the previous invention or innovation. Technology has a presence all over the world, and the rate of innovation is faster than ever. The next upgraded model of an appliance or software is present just around the corner. Right brainers, creative geniuses and design thinkers, it’s our time to rule the world.
The usual way of approaching a situation, the tried and tested method is no more an option. With a reduced attention span, novelty plays an important role. Our wandering eyes are constantly looking for the next best thing. The need for creativity surges as innovation in process and programs are sought after. Creativity is not restricted to only artistic fields. Any industry or business that thrives on change has a core centred on creativity. A creative solution to a problem is what our world needs. Do you have a focus on the big picture and can work on the tiny details as well? Then you will have a seat reserved at the ideation table.
The inspirational story of Himanshu Deore
Creativity and innovation go hand in hand. They know no age, class and caste, they do not discriminate. Himanshu Muneshwar Deore is a classic example. He is a 24-year-old student from Bengaluru who has teamed up with Naina artisans in Uttar Pradesh to design a new trending school bag that turns into a desk. These artisans have been making baskets from moonj grass for more than 40 years. He was inspired by an exhibition he had visited. Let’s take a moment to applaud this idea in action. Himanshu’s innovation is child-friendly. He takes into consideration the child’s health and is sensitive to the weight they can carry easily without burdening their shoulders and back. The bag has two straps and metal stands that convert into the legs of the desk. Himanshu is a product design student who has passed out from NICC International College of Design. As he held this project dear to his heart, he turned down many corporate roles. His creative project is backed by purpose. It pained Himanshu to see school children who didn’t have access to comfortable desks and benches struggle to get a good quality education. They strained their neck and back while hunching over to write in their books. His innovative technology is ergonomically fit to meet the needs of a student.
Himanshu’s innovation ties well into the empathetic approach of the New Education Policy (NEP). His innovative bag can carry a total load of up to 3 kgs. The NEP policy states that the weight of the school bag should not exceed 10 percent of the child’s weight. This is a progressive policy that highlights the excessive weight that children have been dragging around for decades. Besides, the wheeled and trolley bag will be replaced with lightweight bags that can be carried around easily. The universally accepted ratio of 1:10, i.e. the weight of the bag should be 1/10 of the child’s weight, will be realized in India. In addition to this change, installing a digital weighing machine to implement this policy successfully is the next step along with the introduction of lockers in schools, the children will not have to carry all their books anymore. NEP’s new bag policy 2020 brings to light the need for students’ safety.
Proper infrastructure is an essential requirement in private schools and many public schools as well. However, rural schools focus more on imparting education and less on infrastructure due to limited funds. Himanshu worked with the artisans from January to March and applied the learnt techniques to this bag. The success story of Himanshu Deore will make you question your purpose.
An overlooked component when applying creativity is empathy. You may question its relevance and role. Considering the needs of customers is essential when you create a product. Accessing music online at anytime and anywhere is an innovation that has deemed the MP3 players redundant. The MP3 replaced the CD players, and the CD replaced the cassette players. Innovation, in most cases, has led to the fatality of the previous invention. In a way, you could look at this as the survival of the fittest. The one that evolves will always make it to the top, considering it is sensitive to the needs of the end customer.
Here are 5 tips to help you develop your creativity:
- Be ready to make mistakes. You may not get it right the first time, and if you do, a little tweaking here and there will need your attention.
- What is the intent of the innovation? Clarity about the purpose helps you to stay on course while innovating.
- Participate in active inaction. This means you need to set aside time to help your mind wander and dream. Make room to catch some new ideas and inspiration. Take a walk in the neighbourhood with an open mind. You’d be surprised about the effectiveness of this habit
- Engage in activities that train your brain. Some apps will help you to do that. Choose one that suits your needs and engages often.
- An idea journal or space on your phone is a must. You may be rushing to work or visiting the supermarket when an idea just struck you. Journal it immediately, and you can revisit it when you are done with your task.