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3 ways to make the daily grind creative

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An innovative, creative mind is a must-have for the modern worker. But for many people, it’s nearly impossible to churn out new ideas while still keeping up with filing, e-mail and the inbox pile.

Solution? Break out of your routine and spur creativity with one of these three activities, suggests Stan Gryskiewicz and Sylvester Taylor in their book, Making Creativity Practical: Innovation That Gets Results:

1. Brainstorm. Make it a creative process and avoid positive or negative evaluation of ideas. Allow time to generate lots of ideas, since first responses are usually predictable.

2. Brainwrite. Participants write down several ideas on separate pieces of paper, then regularly exchange papers and write new ideas or modify others’ comments. Circulate the papers throughout the group as long as you want. When people start acting surprised by what they see on the pages, you’ve gone long enough to spur creative ideas.

3. Take an excursion. Example: Go as a group to the bookstore. Ask everyone to select a book, but enforce two rules: It cannot be a book directly related to the current problem or one they have already read. Look for unexpected insights that come from the range of books the group selects.

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