AITM Seminars >> 2nd Public Seminar: “Creativity and Problem Solving Speaker” by Prof. Dr. Sushil Kumar


AITM is committed to delivering quality academic programs, which produce critical and enlightened thinkers, who are not only able to think “locally” but also compete globally. In pursuit of this academic excellence and to enrich the programs offered, AITM has and will continue to invite distinguished visiting faculty from reputed academic institutions such as Indian Institute of Management, Asian Institute of Technology.

As part of its corporate responsibility to share knowledge and experiences with fellow practitioners, professionals and other interested stakeholders, AITM has launched and will continue to sponsor a series of public seminars by distinguished visiting faculty, our AITM national faculty and other distinguished personalities.

AITM held its 2nd Public Seminar on “Creativity and Problem Solving” on 25 March 2013 in AITM Lecture Theatre, AITM Building. Prof. Dr. Sushil Kumar, a distinguished Professor from Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Lucknow, and our AITM visiting faculty for Operations Management for our MBA program, delivered the seminar on this important topic. Prof. Emeritus Dr. Ram Manohar Shrestha chaired the session.

Title: Creativity and Problem Solving
Speaker: Prof. Dr. Sushil Kumar, Visiting Prof. – AITM; Professor – IIM, Lucknow
Date: March 25, 2013

Prof. Sushil Kumar started his talk reciting The Cow-Path poem by Sam Walter Foss (1958-1911). The poem illustrates the normal human behavior that feels comfortable with the existing or traditional system. People usually don’t challenge the existing system or working ways and just keep on doing the same thing time and again. Companies and their sales teams follow the same path that they have used for years to accomplish their desired destination. The path created by original management team, with many trials and experiences, is repeated by the followers. By repeating these paths, they create policies and procedures that make up the flow of their sales process, etching the paths in the minds of their sales force. In addition they promote top performers from within the heard; they are then tasked with training the new members to follow the path, resulting in inbreeding.

Evolution takes place every minute of every day, things are changing and if one isn’t open to new approaches and doing things never done before, they are allowing their career or company to become vulnerable to extinction. If one is thinking about their processes and approaches, they can recognize new opportunities that present themselves. In today’s environment one has unlimited opportunities to learn new and more efficient ways of selling, it is up to them to continually recreate their path. Sales people who are investing in their knowledge base, and applying what they learned, will always create more than those who stay on the paths of the past.

Problems are part of opportunities. A problem is a matter that must be resolved. A circumstance that a person has perceived consciously or subconsciously must be resolved by the person or the organization to which s/he belongs. A “problem” is the gap between the existing situation and the ideal attention of objective. One must realize that nothing is solved unless one takes decisions; one may also decide about not to decide. Every day we solve problems by taking individual or collective decisions. In modern problem solving process, first the problem is exposed by grasping it, setting the target and identifying the gap between existing solution and target. Next, we analyze the causes through investigation. Finally, we implement countermeasures through planning, implementation and institutionalization.

At times, the problems faced by the organizations may be unique, multifaceted and complex, calling for an applied critical thinking by the organizational teams to seek out the solutions. This demands a higher level response from the people involved in the process who, in turn, need to be innovative and creative to solve such problems. Tough problems need innovative solutions; and this originates from a creative process that involves the individual and group creativity.

Creativity is the process of developing novel responses to problem. It is essential for decision-making activities like developing new alternatives and correctly defining problem. One expert refers to creativity as, in essence, “an assumption-breaking process”, and the process analysis means solving a problem by thinking about the processes that are involved. Everyone wants see the best solution but then what keeps us from seeing the best solution is our habits, the lack of clarity about the problem and the lack of creativity.

During the seminar Prof. Sushil Kumar endeavored to draw a relationship between problems, decisions and creativity and also discussed how our creativity remains confined in a shell, what efforts are required to unleash the potential of this powerful concept in order to be benefited in personal, social and working life.