Using creativity to change Africa.

The creative act is not an act of creation in the sense of the Old Testament. It does not create something out of nothing; it uncovers, selects, re-shuffles, combines, synthesizes already existing facts, ideas, faculties, skills. The more familiar the parts, the more striking the new whole.

Koestler’s law of creativity

It is a simple but very profound quote that represents the power and value of creativity in life. And this is not merely artistic endeavors but also scientific. Our quest as Africans to solve our problems must stem from an intimate interaction with our context at all levels. Our attempts to create new innovations and solutions doesn’t arise out of thin air but by careful and strict interaction with the world we are living in by:

  1. UNCOVERING: the wealth and treasures hidden within the continent. Africa has untold reserves of wealth that are yet to be uncovered and fully maximized. One of the most important activities for African entrepreneurs is to go on a journey of discovery.

To achieve this level of creativity that will create more striking and relevant innovations we need to :

  1. Improve our appreciation of already existing facts: the potential of Africa is more apparent than we think.

The Power of Familiarity

Does familiarity lead to loss of respect for someone or something? In some cases yes. But in the case of creativity it can unlock more possibilities. “The more familiar the parts the more striking the whole.” People are looking for solutions to a problem. In this postmodern era this means embracing complexity. Superficial ideas are unsustainable and by and large impractical. To develop better solutions, businesses in Africa need to become deeply familiar and intimate with their customers and the context they exist in.

The principle mark of genius is not perfection but originality, the opening of new frontiers. Arthur Koestler

Our aim in Africa should be to strive to unlock and discover new frontiers, develop new perspectives, reach newer and higher heights. I believe this is possible especially when we embrace our problems and look at them with a keener and more curious eye; the eye of creativity and innovation.

Musekiwa is a prolific and eccentric author with amazing titles suitable for business strategy and daily living, which he has published.