Creativity and innovation: what are the differences?

 We can create without innovating or innovate without creating, be innovative without being creative or be creative without being innovative. You follow ? Creativity and innovation are two close concepts, sometimes confused and yet very different… Let's shed some light on the subject!

The power of creativity

Creativity is having ideas , not necessarily implementing them. This is a phase of reflection, imagination, mental boiling: you develop scenarios, plans, think about costs and feasibility, but always without going beyond the concept stage . Do you have a thousand ideas a minute to change the world? Your brainstorming sessions end up with pages and pages of original suggestions? Well done, you are being creative!

Creativity can make it possible to remedy a problem, a fault or a lack. She can identify them, dissect them and resolve them. A mix of curiosity and audacity that allows you to generate ideas without censorship. However, these ideas will remain at the abstract stage, unless they move on to the innovation phase. Imagine Xerox, in the 70s, refusing to implement certain proposals of its engineers… like the Ethernet protocol, the graphical interface or the laser printer, ideas that ended up with delighted competitors like Apple or HP.

Running out of ideas? Do not panic, creativity works like most skills. It is a mental gymnastics which consists in associating ideas in order to produce new, more original ones. Brainstorming is one of the most effective methods, along with design thinking  !

The power of innovation

Innovation consists in implementing an idea , not necessarily several… and not necessarily yours. In other words, you can revolutionize the way the world works with a single idea, or thanks to your ability to spot it! Innovating is the action phase , unlike the creation phase. It is a multidisciplinary process monopolizing the skills of finance, organization, engineering… The skills of an entrepreneur , in short.

At this point, you enter a phase of testing and prototyping , funding and resources with a concrete objective: bringing your idea to market, destined to generate earnings. Good news, here again, competence is worked on, via management and support.

The great specialty of tech giants is not so much creativity as innovation . Remember, Apple did not invent the MP3 player, any more than the tablet or the smartphone, not even the personal computer… On the other hand, the brand has become a champion in the art of transforming the ideas of others into products. to success. So in the art of innovating!

Ideally, innovation does not go without creativity, and vice versa. It is better to have a host of ideas to obtain a tangible result, and a good idea does not lead far without effective implementation resulting in gains... To channel ideas and optimize their application, on the other hand, support is often essential !

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