12 Teaching creativity


Creativity: key to business success

Oriol Amat

Successful companies are those that achieve their goals, which are usually to grow and create value for their interested parties (partners, employees, society, etc.). When we study the distinguishing characteristics of successful companies, we usually find factors such as leadership, commitment to the team, funding, excellence, internationalization and other factors like creativity.

Creativity deals with two concepts: coming up with ideas and making those ideas useful. This second aspect is decisive because if ideas do not produce value, they are a waste of resources. In Japan, for example, there is a great tradition of holding useless idea contests. A few years ago, one of the winning ideas was a hat with a built-in toilet paper roll. This is clearly an idea that has never had any practical application.

One successful company that sees this clearly is Metalquimia, a machinery manufacturer for the meat industry. It is a company based on creativity, which involves producing new ideas through creativity and transforming them into added value through groundbreaking innovation. Thanks to this methodology, they have increased the success rate of their new projects to nearly 90%, whilst the average in the sector is 40%. As a result, it is one of the Catalan companies with the most patents registered. One example of success in innovation is when around 70% of sales come from products launched in the previous five years.

In short, to be successful you need to be creative and make sure that your ideas create value.

Oriol Amat

Oriol Amat

Professor of Economy and Financial Programmes, UPF Barcelona School of Management


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