Creative Problem Solving for Managers
Developing Skills for Decision Making and Innovation
Stimulating and developing the creative potential of all members of an organisation is widely seen as contributing to performance and results. This prestigious textbook provides a complete overview of the creative problem-solving process and its relevance to modern managers in the private and public sectors. It introduces ideas, skills and models to help students understand how creative thinking can aid problem solving, and how different techniques may help people who have different thinking and learning styles.
This updated fifth edition includes fresh case studies, exercises and suggested reading, alongside extensive diagrams and thought-provoking questions. A new chapter considers the use of heuristics in decision-making situations faced by managers, and examines how aspects of creative problem solving can relate to such situations. It also introduces a complex in-tray exercise, which demonstrates how the conflicting demands on an individual manager can be considered in practice. Supporting PowerPoint slides for lecturers are available for each chapter.
Creative Problem Solving for Managers will continue to be an ideal resource for undergraduate and postgraduate students studying problem solving, strategic management, creativity and innovation management, as well as managers looking to develop their decision-making abilities.
Table of Contents
1. Creativity and its Importance in Business 2. Blocks to Creativity 3. Theories of Creativity and the Creative Problem-Solving Process 4. Problem Solving and Improvisation 5. Factors Influencing People's Ability to Undertake Ideation 6. Objective Finding, Fact Finding and Problem Finding/Definition 7. Morphological Analysis and Related Techniques 8. Brainstorming and its Variants 9. Lateral Thinking and Associated Methods 10. Synectics 11. Paradigm-Breaking Techniques 12. Miscellaneous Ideation Techniques 13. Evaluation 14. Decision Making and Problem Solving 15. Implementing Ideas 16. Computer-Assisted Creative Problem Solving
Tony Proctor is Emeritus Professor at the University of Chester, UK.
In Creative Problem Solving, Tony Proctor dispenses readers with rich examples of ideation techniques, as well as challenging the readers to question fundamental issues and develop their own capabilities. Proctor showers readers with easy-to-use techniques that have the potential to transform anyone into a genius level creative thinker and problem solver. The author explains and shares good practices for managers to avoid arriving at the same old answers to problems. Proctor offers plenty of techniques that today’s readers can use to bridge the creativity gap and unleash their hidden potential in problem solving.
Creative Problem Solving is full of practical guidance, as well as case studies to illustrate the key points. It provides the latest guide for generating new ideas – including a chapter to explain the range of computer software, apps, photographs and videos that can act as a spurt to ideation.
This book is invaluable reading for undergraduate, postgraduate and MBA courses, as well as being particularly useful in ongoing professional development courses for managers.
Dr Kim Hua Tan, Professor of Operations and Innovation Management, Nottingham University Business School
Creativity is a life skill for leaders, managers, decision makers and students. The fifth edition of Creative Problem Solving provides excellent techniques to creative and critical thinking. I have used cases, techniques, methods and examples from Tony Proctor’s book in my teaching, which will help my students to acquire skills in high demand in business and government to solve complex problems.
Dr Wahabalbari Ahmed, Lecturer in Economics, Birmingham City University Business School
Creative Problem Solving is very supportive of a practice-led approach to management education, at a time when creative thinking skills are increasingly necessary across organisations of all sizes and sectors. Drawing on comprehensive and in-depth theoretical support, it offers lots of useful practical cases and examples to stimulate critical analysis and debate. I have used previous editions as a core text and continue to do so with postgraduate students locally and globally to support decision making, problem solving and exploration of opportunities.
Dr Pauline Loewenberger, Senior Lecturer, University of Bedfordshire Business School