Creative & Critical Thinking in Business: Importance & Examples

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  • 0:04 Making Decisions
  • 0:31 Creative Thinking Defined
  • 1:22 Critical Thinking
  • 2:19 Both Kinds of Thinking…
  • 3:24 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Savannah Samoszuk

Savannah has over eight years of hotel management experience and has a master's degree in leadership.

Businesses are aware that the need for creative and critical thinking is essential to their success. This lesson explains creative and critical thinking and shows the importance of both in business.

Making Decisions

In our daily and professional lives, we make hundreds, if not thousands, of decisions. We decide what to wear, which road to take to work, what to eat, which phone calls to take, etc. In business, decisions have to be made about which product to promote, how to promote that product, who to hire, etc. All of these decisions require different ways of thinking, which can be creative, critical, or a combination of both creative and critical thinking.

Creative Thinking Defined

Think about a time when you were stumped with what to do in a situation. We have all experienced those situations in both our personal and professional lives. For example, let's say that you are presented with a new project that will require you to do things differently than normal. This will require you to think in a different way to tackle this new project. Creative thinking is looking for new ways to solve a problem.

Creative thinking requires four main processes: openness, curiosity, invention, and imagination.

  • Openness: being able to accept new ideas
  • Curiosity: helps when considering new ideas
  • Invention: thinking in an unconventional manner
  • Imagination: in this case, means looking past current standards

The best creative thinking happens when you have an imagination and are able to use it to come up with new ideas.

Critical Thinking

Critical thinking, on the other hand, is a more analyzed and objective way to think about a problem. It involves taking into consideration logic and reasoning. Someone in a management position will need to use more critical thinking when making decisions that affect other people's jobs and processes, such as safety procedures. When it comes to issues that deal with other people, critical thinking is needed. For example, when a manager is hiring new personnel, it requires critical thinking that analyzes the candidates before making a decision.

Critical thinking involves four processes: evaluation, assessment, categorization, and reasoning.

  • Evaluation: using logic to understand the problem before coming up with a solution
  • Assessment: considering possible outcomes before making a decision
  • Categorization: putting different solutions together based on similarity before selecting one
  • Reasoning: using logic to make decisions rather than creativity

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