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Creativity & Innovation



A. understand what is "auditing" your companies' creativity level;
B. understand the innovation training mindset;
C. create metrics for creativity development.

Creativity & Innovation management is fundamental for all organizations and companies where knowledge creation is a goal of their everyday activities. Any enterprise should boost their creativity in order to be innovate and competitive.

Time needed to review this content: 30 MIN

However in order to have successful organizations the quality of the people is the distinguished feature to achieve it.
Organizational learning should be improved by the contribution of the people in order to increase business performance.
Companies and organizations are in constant need to develop new practices therefore they should implement a system that allows them to manage and measure the creative potential both in terms of companies as well as individuals.

Studies in modern literature have showed that there is not a widely acceptable creativity audit model and there are objective reasons for this. It is known that the complexity of an organisation, the nature of its business operations and of its activities differ to a large extent. Thus, there is not a unique, detailed model of creativity audit that could be applied with the same effectiveness for a broad range of organisations.

Having as a starting point the above, priority was given in describing only the main stages of the methodology. This model is shown below:

Stage 1: Planning the creativity audit
It is the first and most important stage aimed to adopt the creativity audit in particular organisational needs (contextualizing). It is highly recommended to top management and to the creativity audit expert or team to review existing strategy like current strategic, business & marketing plans, etc. Only then the creativity audit expert or team will manage to take into consideration the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that are shaped in the internal or in the external environment of the organization under study.

Stage 2: Data Collection
Data collection in creativity audit is mainly done according the following ways:
• Use of primary data (after a possible update) existed in other departments like the H.R.M unit (categories of staff degrees, working experience, etc).
• Data collection with the use of a special survey tool designed to audit creativity level. It requires planning of interviews with a representative sample from staff or sometimes and where this is feasible full census (interviews with all staff).
The groups of questions in the creativity questionnaire should reflect the factors and the variables, which were identified during the first stage of creativity audit (see stage 1). As in any survey questionnaire, the groups of questions addressing the same factor or variable are typically presented and organized in different sections.
In any case, extra attention should be given in practical issues influencing survey success like:

• Length of questionnaire (it shouldn’t take long time to respondents)
• Effort on guarantee sincere answers
• Very good formulation of questions and correction of syntactic errors
• Use of suitable ranks in the answers
• Avoiding repetition of questions

To reduce time spent from company’s staff, questionnaire responses (data collection) are suggested to be given by employees themselves and not through interviews.

Stage 3: Data analysis
The suitable statistical methods for data analysis in all surveys are selected according the type of data created during data collection. As in most surveys, a questionnaire includes questions asking for both quantitative and qualitative data. In the next paragraphs, some characteristic examples for both data cases are given for better understanding.
Quantitative data:
A characteristic example of quantitative data in social research is opinion gradation (personal stances). In this case respondents are asked to respond in a statement or question aiming to asses a variable that influences an important element of knowledge or knowledge process (i.e. “To what extent do you feel free to express or share an idea?”). All potential answers in questions of this nature are usually given in Likert scales from 1 up to 5 or from 1 up to 7. I.e. 1= by no means, while 5= very much.
Qualitative data:
This category mainly includes specific job elements like the position, the department/sector of an employee or a factory worker, the work type (administration, executive, personnel, technical, etc) and a lot of other such qualitative elements. The role of this data type is very important for further analyses because we can use them to group all data in further groups and compare other quantitative measures for each. Such regroupings help the team conducting the audit to better focus to problems in specific populations and undertake (if needed) corrective actions.

Stage 4: Report
The creativity expert or team presents to the management board or managerial personnel the final results and the final action plan-suggestions to support the initial actions in the organization. This final stage of creativity audit, due to its importance, is proposed to include two further phases.

In this first phase the primary action plan (initial suggestions) of creativity audit expert or team is presented to the management board/managerial personnel. They give feedback on the action plan. Thus the presence of all managerial personnel (unit managers) and a follow up discussion is highly recommended.

In the second phase that follows, the final action plan is presented to managers/director. Generally speaking the second/final plan will be an improved version of the first being more realistic, feasible and acceptable. It is also emphasized that the plan should be revised in regular time intervals of at least one year with creativity audit repetition because creativity as a business asset has great dynamics.
(model based on

Please identify 5 good ideas from your department in the last 6 months, which have impacted the company.

This exercise can be done by departments/individuals. The concept of good ideas and impact should be defined in order to guarantee that everyone is aligned and knows what they should be looking at.


Based on


The creative process is not done overnight.
In order to audit an innovation process you need to include all people within the organization.
Being creative and innovative means trying different options.



Draw on a piece of paper the following dots, then try to join the dots without lifting your pen. 

One possible solution HERE


Melissa L. Gruys, Natasha V. Munshi, Todd C. Dewett, When antecedents deverge: Exploring novelty and value as dimensions of creativity, ELSEVIER, Thinking Skills and Creativity 6 (2011) 132-137
Andria Andiliou, P.Karen Murphy, Examining variations among researchers’ and teachers’ conceptualizations of creativity: A review and synthesis of contemporary research, ELSEVIER, Educational Research Review 5 (2010) 201-219
Jeff DeGraff, Katherine A. Lawrence, «Creativity at Work: Developing the Right Practices to Make Innovation Happen», Jossey-Bass UMS S, 2002
James C. Kaufman, Ronald A. Beghetto, Beyond Big and Little: The Four C Model of Creativity, Review of General Psychology, Vol.13, Nº.1.1-12, 2009
Online Innovation Tools, 9 October 2007
Design Thinking 2.0 – Enabling Innovation with Web2.0. Part 3; 25 March 2010


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