Last time when I scribbled on your pages, my writings had some shades of uncomfortable truth which didn’t go well with some readers. One of the readers got so infuriated that he rubbished the last blog and demanded inspirations, something that he felt were lacking from the words coming out from your pages. I am not sure if I can inspire him and alike with this blog, I did try to dig out an idea that might tickle a few minds. While there are hundreds of topics one can find inspiration in, I wanted to talk about a small idea which has been tickling my neurons for a year now.
Few weeks back, I visited V&A Museum of Childhood in East London. It’s a museum dedicated to children and their toys across ages. There are small play areas in and around museum where children can play with toys or make stuff out of those toys. What has always amazed me watching kids play is the creativity of young minds. Based on my past experience as a tutor of an Elementary school in Los Angeles I often feel that some of the most creative humans I have seen are elementary kids and I feel that creativity reduces as they move up the grades by becoming aware of realities. A similar idea was also spoken about by Ken Robinson in his TED talk. While I do not wish to divert my blog towards education reforms, I wish to steer it in the direction of using this pure creativity for solving real world problems. There are experiments like World Peace Game where John Hunter has successfully put children in solving real complex political conflicts in class room game. Summarising his words, He believed that these young minds can come up with solutions and novel ideas which normally do not occur to adult minds. While some may agree, some may not, it’s worth looking at a TED discussion started by a researcher fin Portugal where he has posed a question as to whether children can be asked to solve real world problems.
Steering to market research, while we study children for usage of their products, what if we can tap into their creativity to help us in product development studies for products not meant for them. Imagine introducing children to a real world business problem and making them brainstorm a solution for it. If a manufacturer wants to ideate a new product, we can set a context for kids to think and then allow kids to explore, experiment and conceptualize. These ideated solutions can then be looked upon by product development teams for their actual implement ability. Or imagine children being asked to ideate a story around a product or brand which can then be taken to advertising teams. Using children in ideation process can give a completely out of box fresh idea. No matter how creative adults think themselves to be, our imaginations are often bound by self-imposed perceptions of reality; something that children are less bound by.
Often I feel that what we call as original is not actually original but a repurposed unoriginal from some other time, place or industry. More we become aware more we lose our capability to think unbiased or create something original by not being influenced by something that we already know of. These young minds who are yet to be exposed to reality give a window into creativity untouched by reality. While kids can be complicated to work with, what’s the harm in trying an ideation with kids?
Before I close this blog, let me tell that this idea is not original either.
Preriit Souda, TNS Global-UK
PS –Feel free to agree-disagree on my thought. Plus feel free to correct me on any stuff you feel am ill-informed or biased. Views expressed are solely personal and do not reflect views of TNS or associated companies.