How divergent thinking can help you improve your business

Want to build a better business and improve the way you do things? Divergent thinking fosters creativity and innovation, helping you see things in a different light. It can help you challenge the way things are done and come up with your own original ideas to customer problems. 

With divergent thinking, you can:

  • Plan for the future
  • Make your processes more efficient
  • Achieve your goals
  • Lead great teams. 

But what is divergent thinking? 

It’s all about using your imagination to spark ideas and come up with many creative solutions to a problem. Brainstorming, mind mapping and subject mapping are all examples of divergent thinking. It’s all about coming up with many different options and producing unique ideas that depart form the ordinary. 

To come up with better options, you need to dream up a whole host of ideas before narrowing them down to the best ones. It’s best to focus on quantity rather than quality at this stage, to come up with as many different options as possible. 

Here’s a few tips for how you can apply divergent thinking to improve your business model. 

Ask questions

Be curious and open to new ways of doing things. Ask why things are the way they are. Ask yourself what’s currently not working well in your business model, and what you could do to improve it. Try generating lots of responses to this question, without focusing on one ‘right’ answer. 

What tools could you be using to work more effectively? Are there any industry-specific apps you could be utilising to help streamline your business? What would happen if you took advantage of automation?  

How could you adapt your business model to better meet the needs of your customers? What would happen if you created a new revenue stream, or went after a new customer segment? 

Asking questions will provoke you and challenge your way of thinking, whilst widening your limits of what is possible. 

Ignore the status quo

As children, we’re told off for non-conformity and we’re taught to follow rules. But when it comes to business, the best organisations play by their on rules. 

Improving your business model is not about looking back to the past or looking towards your competitors for ideas. It’s about looking forward and going against the grain to come up with original solutions that meet unsatisfied, new or hidden customer needs.  

Challenge ideas

One of the best ways to foster divergent thinking is to challenge ideas, whether that’s your own, or existing ones. Ask why things have to be that way. Challenge problems, solutions and everything in between, and start thinking of different solutions. Once you start really challenging things, you’ll begin to think of alternatives, and that might just lead to your next big idea.

Change often originates from areas identified through SWOT analysis, an investigation of your business model’s strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats. What are its current strengths and weaknesses? Are there any opportunities or threats to your business model, and how can you pivot your business to address these? Once you’ve identified any problems or opportunities, you can begin to come up with creative solutions. 

Be open to change

Stay creative and remain open to new ideas. The best businesses can adapt to change by pivoting their model. So, it’s a good idea to regularly assess your business model and constantly think of areas you could improve. 

With the right mindset, and the right approach to divergent thinking, you can foster new ideas and use them to build an even better business. 

Want to find out more about improving your business model?

At Complete HQ, we help our clients challenge boundaries and we love working with people who are open to new ideas. It’s our mission to help you build a great business model so that you can focus more on what you love. 

Sounds good, right? If you’d like to find out more about how we can help, just a ping us message and we’ll get back to you asap! 


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