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Creativity and innovation are important attributes in a person, even in the cold, harsh corporate environment. In this piece, we look at what Steve Jobs thought of creativity, and what his recommendations were to all of us to become more creative and innovative.
There is a lot of literature and research done on what makes creative people tick. Speaking at the occasion of receiving the Golden Plate award at the Academy of Achievement in Washington, D.C., as long back ago as 1982, Steve Jobs, then aged 26, said that the most important fuel in making a person creative is his or her experiences.
If you have the same bag of experiences as everyone else, said jobs, then you will make the same connections as everyone else. There will be no room for innovation with your mind. Only if you strive to have experiences that that are out of the ordinary will you equip yourself with tools to make connections that no one else makes.
Now some of those connections will be just plain weird, but equally, others will have the potential to change the world.
Jobs himself shunned the conventional career path from college to job, dropping out of Reed College to travel around India – a trip that changed his life. After coming back from Asia and founding Apple, he took up Zen meditation, and practiced it all his life. So he advises people to look for experiences that are out of the ordinary. For instance, to a 14-year-old who got into Stanford, he said the best thing, perhaps, to do was to consider going to Paris and become a poet for a few years.
In short, garbage in, garbage out. In order to be creative and more innovative than others, you must have experiences that others don’t have, and you must consume art that others have never even heard of.

Chirag Thakkar

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