ADVISE: Out Of The Box Thinking! The Power Of CREATIVITY

Let us understand innovation through an incident. In one of the most prestigious ‘soap manufacturing’ organisations in the United States of America, there arose a dilemma. And this was that
12 Sep 2015 09:38
ADVISE: Out Of The Box Thinking! The Power Of CREATIVITY

Let us understand innovation through an incident.

In one of the most prestigious ‘soap manufacturing’ organisations in the United States of America, there arose a dilemma.

And this was that there were many soap boxes which came out of the conveyor belt ‘empty’ (without the soap)!!!

In fact, many of their wholesalers and retailers started complaining about it and a few decided to even stop issuing orders to this organisation.

Umpteen meetings ensued to resolve this crisis but nothing really worked.

Finally it was decided that two employees would man the conveyor belt and would keep checking all the soap boxes from the conveyor to ascertain whether empty or not.

For a few months it seemed to have resolved the problem. But due to the ever increasing fatigue of having to constantly check each and every soap box the human errors began to crop up and again the same crisis emerged.

There was chaos in the organisation as it seemed as though there was no clear solution to this problem.

And then something happened! During the birthday celebrations of the one of the workers, the organisation’s canteen employee who was distributing tea to all the guests requested for five minutes from one of the general managers (who was a special attendee at the function).

He said to the general manager: “Sir, I have been hearing about this crisis of the soap box.

“While I was sharing this with my wife, my son just came up to me and suggested why not keep a powerful Table Fan near the Conveyor belt!!!

Ignoring the general manager’s perplexed expression, this worker continued: “My son was telling me that if the fan is kept near the conveyor belt, at least the person standing next to it will be able to identify which box is empty.

“This will be by simply observing the ones shaking more vigorously than the boxes with the soap in side!!!

“Sir, I know it’s a stupid idea but I just felt like telling you about it.”

The general manager smiled and immediately called his other managers to his cabin and took this worker too along with him.

They decided to experiment with this idea as it was simple, seemed effective and there was nothing really to lose as such!

And to everybody’s astonishment, it worked. The powerful table fan placed at a near distance from the conveyor belt created the same effect.

The empty boxes that would shake vigorously and therefore would be promptly removed from the belt. The problem was solved…permanently.

The canteen worker’s son was invited to the factory and felicitated!

That day was not just a celebration of finding the right solution but more importantly it was a celebration of Innovation & Creative thinking.

The general manager also took a decision.

It was decided that a ‘SUGGESSTION BOX’ would be created and kept near the Canteen door for all the employees.

Furthermore, not just the best, nut all the ideas or creative suggestions would be rewarded as a source of motivation!


What can we learn from this story?

Well, this story is a lesson for us. It teaches us the importance of developing an ‘ATTITUDE’ for Innovation.

Out of the box thinking is an attitude and ability that resides within each of=ne of us but one needs to take the effort of opening that box.


Simple definition and

understanding of Creativity

Creativity is truly the art and the ability of an individual to introspect, imagine and initiate a thought-process that is different, dynamic and developmental towards the accomplishment of his/her  objectives as well as his organisation’s goals.

Let us all open our wings of creativity and start looking at things differently. Let us aspire to develop new and effective ‘IDEAS’ for the future.


A poem by Mayur


The zest to build something new

     An ability to make more from a few

         An urge to arise from the old

                 Creativity, it makes you benevolent and bold


A vibrant fire, in us, it keeps burning

      With it, unique insights, we keep learning

             A brilliant source of inspiration, to those who yearn to grow

                  Creativity, it gives us supreme direction, like an arrow to the bow


For creativity to blossom, intensely introspect you must

      Amongst the multitude of thoughts, even the silly ones you must trust

             Problems may be the same, yet different answers to them, you must find

                    This ability to create, a supreme force it is that lies in your mind


Inventions and discoveries, like wings for you to fly

       Creativity, not just a feeling, but an inner drive

              Newer paths to climb the mountains so high

                    A passion to create, in us the gift that must never die


Creativity, never can it be bought

         With new ideas seldom shall you be caught

                 Search for strategies, will help you successfully lead

                         Let creativity bloom, like a rose from a seed


Mayur Kalbag is a Leadership Coach, Corporate Trainer & Author. He spearheads SPANDAN CONSULTING and mainly focusses upon Training and Human Resource Development through ‘Specifically Designed Seminars and Conferences. He can be contacted via email:


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