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A passenger railway company in Japan got a contract to build a bullet train track between Tokyo and Nagano. The company faced a huge challenge during the construction of the project as the tunnel built through the mountains was always filled with water. This made the work next to impossible to continue unless the issue was addressed.
The company brought a team of expert engineers to come up with the best solution to the problem. The engineers analysed the situation carefully and drew up an extensive plan to build an expensive drain and a system to divert the water out of the tunnel. While the team of engineers was busy working for the plan to take shape, a maintenance worker came up with a unique solution.
The worker actually tasted the water and found it better than the bottled water he usually had for lunch. He suggested to his boss to bottle it and sell it as premium mineral water. The idea was well bought. Thus, a premium brand of bottled water was born. A huge cost was transformed into a huge profit just by looking at the situation differently.
Creativity is hugely different from effort and hard work. It comes out when something piques a person’s interest, when he begins to seek answers to questions or solutions to problems, when he focuses on a thing so badly that new ideas come pouring in. To be creative, you need not think outside the box. You can just push the walls of the box from the inside to get brilliant ideas.
Remember, everything around us is a refined version of some creative solutions. Every challenge is an opportunity to think differently. It just requires an expansion in our thinking horizon for miracles to happen.
Be a maverick solution provider in your day-to-day professional challenges. Who knows, you might be very close to a billion-dollar discovery.
• Creative projects require passion and a genuine inspiration
• Support from others can boost one’s creativity and morale
• Every challenge is an opportunity for one to think differently
Source: Kamran Ahmed Siddiqui, Special to Jobs & Careers
The writer is Training Manager in a major Abu Dhabi Oil & Gas Company