Duggan (2013) declares that Creative Strategy is not about coming up with new ideas, but about thinking strategically when finding a solution to a problem by seeking new ways or innovative ideas to apply toward such solution.
He mentions two ways of coming up with ideas for creative strategy: methods of creativity and methods of strategy. He explains that none of these ideas target the solution of the problem as methods of creativity just deals with emerging with a lot of creative ideas that do not have a connection with the strategy while method of strategy focuses on analyzing the situation, but not solving it. He defines “Creative strategy” is the set of formal steps you can use to apply strategic intuition” (p. 7).
Duggan (2013) explains that we when faced with a problem we utilize the information we have in our memories to analyze it. This information comes from different sources, via “expert intuition” and “strategic intuition. He defined the expert intuition as the set of thought and actions we have gained from direct experience with a subject. He concluded that the “the more experience, the better and faster your expert intuition” (p. 9).
Expert intuition, however, can interfere with strategic intuition when the given circumstances that enable us to exercise expert intuition are not present, therefore it incapacitates us from being innovative. The reason is that we act on our expert intuition works with information and experiences with which we are familiar, hence, if the situation or problem we are facing looks different, then we are lost. ” On the other hand, the strategic intuition allows us to gather and combine ideas in new ways to the extent that we can take action on them. Duggan (2013) declares that Creative Strategy is not about coming up with new ideas, but about thinking strategically when finding a solution to a problem by seeking new ways or innovative ideas to apply toward such solution. This is the type of thinking that enabled Reed Hasting to come up with the idea of Netflix. He applied creative strategy to bring his ideas together into one practical solution to a problem he had encountered years ago combined with “precedents” which is an inventory of sources already in existence upon which the creative strategy can be built. I find the presence of mind concept to be noteworthy. Duggan (2013) explains that during the journey of searching for that solution or ideas that will help us connect the dots, it is very important to have presence of mind, the mental discipline to face the unknown with a calm, open mind” (p. 15). I strongly believe that Hastings experienced the coup d’oeil—or “glance” in French, which Clausewitz describes as “a flash of insight” (p. 10). At the time he began to develop his ideas, his mind must have been clear, free from negative emotions, anger, frustration, worry, and fear.
Similarly, (Porter, 2011) outlines that a company can outperform its competitors by establishing a difference that it can endure. This sounds pretty much like creative strategy where an organization will come up with practical solutions which will set the company apart from competitors by performing all the activities “that go into creating, producing, selling, and delivering a product or service” (p.78) which are the basic units of competitive advantage. I believe that in order to accomplish this kind of competitive advantage, there is the need to apply both expert intuition as well as strategic intuition because one provides the practical experience necessary to deliver a product or service to full satisfaction and the other requires the combination of strategic ideas that will allow us to think in a new way.
When Scott Cook was trying to innovate Intuit and was given his traditional power point presentation he was not applying a creative strategy that allowed him to get his audience’s attention until he invited Alex Kazaks to present. Cook realized that the company needed to apply the “insight matrix” that comes from strategic intuition and developed and it delivered the desired results (Martin, 2011).
Creative Strategy: A Guide for Innovation (Duggan, 2013)
HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Innovation (Martin, 2011)
HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy (Porter, 2011)
Smith, M. (2001). Writing a successful paper. The Trey Research Monthly, 53, 149-150.