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Creative Problem Solving for Managers
Second edition

How can managers tackle complex problems? How do you encourage innovation? How do you implement new solutions? Is creativity the key to management success? This accessible text provides a lively introduction to the essential skills of creative problem solving. Using extensive case studies and examples from a variety of business situations, Creative Problem Solving for Managers explores a wide range of problem solving theories and techniques, illustrating how these can be used to solve a multitude of management problems. Thoroughly revised and redesigned, this new edition retains the accessible and imaginative approach to problem solving skills of the first edition. Features include: ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ Blocks to creativity and how to overcome them Key techniques including lateral thinking, morphological analysis and synectics Computer-assisted problem solving Increased coverage of group problem solving techniques New website containing in-depth cases and a PowerPoint presentation

As creativity is increasingly being recognised as a key skill for successful managers, this book will be welcomed as a readable and comprehensive introduction for students and practising managers alike. Tony Proctor is Professor in Marketing at Chester University College Business School and was formerly Senior Lecturer in Marketing and Head of the Department of Management at Keele University.

Creative Problem Solving for Managers
Developing skills for decision making and innovation Second edition Tony Proctor

First published 1999 by Routledge 2 Park Square, Milton Park,Abingdon, Oxon OX14 4RN Simultaneously published in the USA and Canada by Routledge 270 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10016 Reprinted 2002 (twice), 2003 Second edition 2005 Routledge is an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group This edition published in the Taylor & Francis e-Library, 2006. “To purchase your own copy of this or any of Taylor & Francis or Routledge’s collection of thousands of eBooks please go to www.eBookstore.tandf.co.uk.”

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilised in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers. British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data Proctor,Tony. Creative problem solving for managers : developing skills for decision making and innovation / Tony Proctor. – 2nd ed. p. cm. Includes bibliographical references and index. 1. Problem solving. 2. Management. I. Title. HD30 .29.P763 2005 658. 4 03–dc22 2004020264 ISBN 0–415–34541–3 (hbk) ISBN 0–415–34542–1 (pbk)

Contents

List of figures Preface to the second edition

xi xv

1 CREATIVITY AND ITS IMPORTANCE IN BUSINESS
Introduction Some definitions of creativity Invention and creativity Ideas and how they arise The importance given to creativity in business Conditions in which creative thinking is required most Paradigm shift Characteristics of creative thinking and creative thinkers Questions Cases

1
1 2 3 5 6 10 12 15 19 20

2 BLOCKS TO CREATIVITY
Introduction The need to be ready for change Problem solving Mindset Other barriers to an individual’s creativity Dealing with an individual’s blocks to creativity Diagnosing whether someone is blocked in their thinking How techniques help to overcome blocks Blocks to organisational creative thinking and ways of dealing with them Elements and conditions of creative organisations Questions Cases

23
23 24 24 26 29 29 30 31 34 35 36 37

v

CONTENTS

3 THEORIES OF CREATIVITY AND THE CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING PROCESS Introduction Creative thinking The brain as an information processor Convergent and divergent thinking The...
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