THE REFLECTIVE JOURNAL
The Name of the Class (Course)
The Name of the School (University)
The City and the State where it is located
Today, creativity, innovation, and work design are the critical aesthetics for people and organizations to prosper in a disruptive business environment. The dynamics are changing rapidly, and paradigm shifts demand new abilities (Matraeva et al., 2020; Vaidya, Prasad, and Mangipudi, 2020). According to Hughes et al. (2018), leaders in the business environment are expected to reflect creativity and innovation in decision-making. The academic world emphasizes immensely injecting creativity by strengthening psychomotor skills, which would subsequently change the organizational climate in the later stages (Huang, Chang and Chou, 2020; Mutonyi, Slatten and Lien, 2020). In this reflective journal, I will examine different expectations from the course, problems I encountered over the period, and various learning outcomes of the course I used to address the challenges in life.
Expectations from the Course
While studying the course, I had high expectations from each learning session. I believed that the course would expand my horizon for critical thinking and decision-making. Notable learning received from the course is creative decision-making. Conceptually, creative decision-making refers to considering problems from different aspects and proposing a contemporary solution (Mozgova, Yevtushenko, and Shuba, 2021). In simpler words, it is an ability to ‘think out of the box while making necessary decisions for individuals and organizations collectively (Fonseca, Abril-de-Abreu and Fernandes, 2020). While studying, I learned that creative thinking is a hidden ability of leaders. Leaders develop creative thinking with experience and use it at the right time to solve a problem. I aim to strengthen my psychomotor ability to perform creative decisions in the future.
Secondly, after completing the course, I expected to learn about people and behaviors, which fulfilled the purpose. This course taught me about personality and values that define people in their surroundings. Personality is a set of characteristics and emotional paradigms that define people differently (Thielmann, Spadaro, and Balliet, 2020). After studying the course, I found that emotional understanding is essential for creating followers in the workplace environment. If I understand the personality characteristics of people and respond to the emotional cues appropriately, I can become a successful leader during my career. This course educated me beyond my initial expectations by spreading awareness about different personality traits and the process of connecting psychologically.
Third, I learned about the relationship between workplace emotions and creativity. Workplace emotions are a fundamental source of creativity for employees (McShane, 2018; Nadler, Carswell, and Minda, 2020). The course educated me that workplace emotions allow people to open about thoughts and beliefs. During brainstorming, openness in communication will enable employees to become more creative in the thought-building process, nurturing innovation in the status quo. However, the course exceeded my expectations about the topic since I learned further that negative emotions also circulate in the workplace, triggering conflicts and politics among team members. Arguably, the culture of innovation and creativity suppresses the negative emotions significantly.
Lastly, the course helped educate me about self-perception. While learning different aspects, I found that self-perception is an essential tool for an individual while fostering creativity in decision-making. As identified by Kunarth, Cash, and Kleinsmann (2020), self-perception allows individuals to improve behaviors and shape values to become creative in the decision-making process. The course helped me identify personal attributes, which improved the quality of responses towards different situations. I experienced a change in my personality and developed a keen understanding related to attitudes and behaviors. This course prepared me to address challenges and uncertainties emerging within a workplace environment.
While studying the course, my perception of situations changed remarkably during the journey. Mainly, I viewed conditions from different perspectives while participating and contributing to team exercises assigned by the mentor. However, I encountered series of problems throughout the journey of this course, which is specified below:
* Firstly, conflicts were a fundamental problem I encountered during the course. Unfortunately, my psychomotor skills were weak in managing conflicts. Conflict management is the ability to overcome differences in opinions fairly and productively (Naseem and Ahmed, 2020; Valente and Lourenco, 2020). Initially, I could not put forward my thoughts and counter the criticisms inclined by my team members. As a result, I failed to settle the differences in beliefs and convince people of my viewpoint.
* Secondly, planning was another challenge I encountered during the journey of this course. Planning is a foundational ability of a successful leader during uncertainties (Weston). Planning allows leaders to prioritize the objectives and accomplish results systematically (Bjorgen, Fossheim, and Macharis, 2021). Arguably, I could not plan and prioritize the goals in the initial phases. Of course, I could not complete the necessary deliverables at the beginning of the journey, which harmed my impression in front of the assessor.
* Lastly, connecting with the team members to accomplish results was an inevitable challenge during the journey. Team cohesion is essential to nurture self-confidence and gain support from people in the surrounding (MacDaniel, 2020). Due to weaker conflict management ability, I could not present myself as a contributing team member. In the initial phases, I remained disconnected from the team members and could not show my ideas for nurturing a positive change. Team cohesiveness was a considerable challenge for me to overcome at the beginning of the journey.
Importance of Creativity, Innovation, and Design – Solving the Encountered Problems
The specified challenges in the journey were addressed through different thinking processes taught in the coursework. I used each technique at various stages to overcome the challenge systematically and create my value among team members and assessors.
* As for the problem relating to problem-solving, I used a convergent thinking style to address the challenge. Convergent thinking creativity allows an individual to understand the problem and mitigate it through logical reasoning or practice (Zhang, Sjoerds, and Hommel, 2020). I identified problems in my personality and response measures. I applied the learning concept of workplace emotions and creativity to overcome the challenge. Based on the convergent thinking principle and workplace emotions, I interacted with each member personally, discussed disparities in thought processes, and connected emotionally. It mitigated conflict events for me during the journey.
* I addressed the challenge relating to ‘planning’ through the design thinking process. Design thinking is a fundamental tool to organize the objectives and nurture innovation in the work processes (Nakata and Hwang, 2020). During the course, my learning outcomes related to creative decision-making helped me apply the design thinking process and overcome the planning disability. I listed the fundamental objectives of the coursework and created a roadmap to accomplish the results. The roadmap comprised cohesive methods in the form of design, which created a synergy for following objectives in the journey.
* As for the problem concerning to team-cohesiveness, I used divergent thinking to overcome the embedded challenge in the journey. Divergent thinking is a creative process that allows individuals to make spontaneous decisions while addressing uncertainties in the process controls (Sun, Wang, and Wgerif, 2020). Using the concept of self-perception taught during the coursework, I improved my quality responses towards the team members while performing collective tasks. I tried to propose mitigating panic among members, spent personal time outside the classroom, and strengthened connectivity before completing the journey. The divergent thinking allowed me to become a creative member of the team with solid networking ability.
Personal Life Example
At the beginning of the journey, I had problems participating in classroom activities and delivering my work within the deadlines. The core reason for this problem was the disability to plan and prioritize the objectives. I could not understand the sensitivity of assigned tasks or connect with people in the surroundings, both students and mentors, to open my set of problems with the classroom activities. The problem started influencing my impression in the classroom environment, which diminished my self-confidence. However, I began improving my skillsets with the passing classroom sessions, and new learning was unlocked at regular intervals.
I used the design thinking process to overcome the challenge. First, I listed my problems, namely self-confidence during interactions and prioritizing the work. I interacted with my assigned group members about the issues. My group members shared their respective approaches to work, which I started practising at a moderate pace. I began preparing chapters before each session and pre-noted the questions. The method all…
THE REFLECTIVE JOURNAL