Though once considered only a nice optional addition to general education, creativity and creative thinking skills have become key factors for standing out in today’s business world.
Experts around the world agree on one thing: the value of creative thinking skills will only increase in the future. As the development of artificial intelligence (AI) increases, and automation of business processes spreads, creativity gains importance as it represents an essential human trait that AI can hardly imitate.
Therefore, including creative thinking skills in your resume is an absolute necessity, and this article will explain what these skills are in detail and how to highlight them properly in your resume.
Creative thinking skills allow individuals to see problems and situations in new ways and, as a result, propose unconventional, innovative solutions.
Highlighting your creative thinking skills on your resume can help you stand out from the competition.
It is essential that you personalize your creative thinking skills resume for the job that you are applying for by only including the creative skills that are pertinent to the position. The ability to think creatively is most effectively communicated through the use of illustrative examples.
The ability to think creatively can be improved by cultivating an open mind, embracing curiosity, and acknowledging that making mistakes is an opportunity to learn.
What Are Creative Thinking Skills?
According to the creative thinking skills definition, these skills are based on the ability to see problems and situations from a fresh perspective and, as a result, come up with unorthodox solutions. Creativity is not just the product of a single skill or trait but rather the result of many different abilities and skills that work together.
While in the past it was believed that creativity was a sort of talent and, therefore, something that you could not learn, nowadays it is considered a skill that can be taught, practiced, and developed. It is also recognized that encouraging creative thinking skills in students results in higher grades and better overall success.
The idea that creative thinking skills are only useful in the arts and other creative fields is yet another fallacy commonly associated with them. There are many different types of creative thinking, which is why creativity is so important in every industry and one of the most sought-after skills in the business world.
Thanks to creativity, engineers develop novel solutions to problems, scientists come up with fresh hypotheses, and managers find more effective ways to address challenges. The careers in which creative thinking skills are particularly recognized also include the following:
Social Media Manager
Video Game Designer
Public Relations Manager
How to Illustrate Creative Thinking Skills on Your Resume
It is important to tailor your resume to the specific job for which you are applying in terms of how much emphasis you place on showcasing your creative abilities.
If you are interested in applying for one of the positions that we described in the previous section or one that is comparable to it, you should mention them in the resume summary or objective and then elaborate further on them in the work experience section.
The work experience section is where you can demonstrate how you used your creative thinking skills in the workplace. You can show the achievements that are the most relevant for the position you’re applying for, and that came as a result of your creativity.
That’s the best way to give legitimate evidence of your skills and show you’re not just listing them to make an impression. It is also a good idea to mention your communication skills coupled with creative thinking skills, as such a combination gives the impression of a professional who is capable of creative teamwork.
The worst thing you can do is just list your skills without providing relevant explanations. Apart from not doing justice to your abilities, this may also give off the impression you’re not motivated for the role.
9 Creative Thinking Skills to Add to Your Resume
Let’s walk you through some of the most valued creative thinking skills, explain what they imply, and show you how to include them on your resume.
#1. Problem Solving
Problem-solving skills encompass a range of cognitive abilities and strategies aimed at finding effective solutions to a problem. They are often mentioned in the context of managerial skills, but they are valuable and sought after in a variety of professional contexts. Problem-solving skills include:
Problem Solving Skills
Analytical thinking: the ability to dissect a problem into smaller components helps identify the source of the problem.
Critical evaluation: the ability to objectively see the pros and cons of every possibility is essential for finding the best solution.
Adaptability: being open to change and ready to adapt to the circumstances make finding solutions to unexpected issues easier.
Communication: the ability to ask for support, present the problem and the solution, and exchange opinions plays an essential part in problem-solving.
Of course, you can also focus only on what’s relevant in your case instead of mentioning each ability. Here’s an example of how to do it:
Identified a recurring issue of low brand awareness and devised an innovative digital campaign which resulted in a 30% brand awareness increase.
Highly developed communication skills and creativity often correlate, which is not surprising as both are partly based on emotional intelligence. In the context of creative thinking skills, communication refers mainly to brainstorming, exchanging ideas, inspiring others, and establishing constructive relationships at the workplace.
The way you connect with your coworkers can either boost or hinder your creativity and good communication skills ensure you can adapt well and connect with others in a positive way.
Here’s an example of how to include communication skills on your resume:
Collaborated cross-functionally with the marketing and design teams to develop visually alluring and engaging social media strategies.
Strong writing skills are essential in many fields, from literature and journalism to copywriting and everything in between. They refer to the ability to use written language to convey all kinds of concepts, ideas, and emotions. Depending on the job you’re applying for, you may want to highlight some specific writing skills that you have developed, such as:
Storytelling: creating a story around a certain idea, concept, or product.
Creative writing: writing fiction and nonfiction stories, poems, novels, etc.
Blogging: writing content for blog posts.
Content writing: writing content for websites.
Academic writing: writing for scientific and educational purposes.
Technical writing: creating manuals, instructions, product descriptions, and similar.
Journalistic writing: writing newspaper articles.
Instead of just putting writing skills in your resume, it is better to provide examples of a few specific writing skills relevant to the job posting. Here’s an idea of how to do it:
A skilled storyteller who wrote an engaging series of blog posts about customer satisfaction that increased website traffic by 35%.
In the context of creative thinking skills, analysis primarily refers to the process of examining and exploring various elements, ideas, and concepts with the intention of acquiring a profound understanding of their structure and meaning. This understanding can then be applied to new situations.
Creative workers need to have strong analytical skills because these skills allow them to objectively evaluate their own work and the work of others.
Here’s an example of how to include analytical thinking skills in your resume:
Developed informed product launches as a direct result of conducting in-depth market research and data analysis with the goal of identifying developing tendencies, competitor strategies, and customer preferences.
#5. Active Listening
Though it is not directly tied to creativity, active listening is an important skill for creative individuals. It helps them foster collaboration, enhance creative processes, and better understand feedback and clients’ needs.
The ability to fully understand verbal and nonverbal communication and create a constructive atmosphere for the exchange of opinions and ideas also falls into the domain of active listening skills.
Here’s how to emphasize them on your resume:
Consistently achieved a 95% client satisfaction rate and return business by actively participating in consultations and gaining a thorough understanding of their brand identity and design requirements.
The ability to cooperate successfully with people from different backgrounds, disciplines, and expertise is important, as diversity feeds creativity. The more a person is able to integrate different factors into their perspective, the more creative solutions they can come up with.
For this reason, collaboration is a vital skill in creative jobs, as it fosters the synthesis of different views and supports the development of more impactful creative solutions.
This is how you can include collaboration as a skill on your resume:
Coordinated and collaborated with the content writing team to integrate user feedback into the content strategy, resulting in a 20% increase in website traffic.
#7. Divergent Thinking
Divergent thinking refers to the ability to come up with a wide range of ideas and see all kinds of possibilities, even unrealistic ones, related to the issue at hand. Exceptional creative thinkers can produce a variety of possible solutions to a single issue, and many of their proposals are often seen as unconventional.
Here’s how to include divergent thinking skills on your resume:
Introduced weekly brainstorming meetings for the marketing team, where we shared ideas for innovation and improvement of our client’s marketing campaigns, which resulted in 98% client satisfaction and business return.
#8. Ability to Accept Risk
Proposing an unconventional, novel approach requires courage. Therefore, creative thinkers need to be ready to take calculated risks in pursuing and presenting their ideas. The ability to accept risk also requires the ability to accept the possibility that it might not pay off.
Here’s an idea of how to include this ability on your resume:
Took the risk of investing in a new marketing segment and made a detailed strategy about time and resource allocation, which consequently led to a 20% revenue growth within the first 18 months.
Vivid imagination gains more and more recognition as an important element of success in all kinds of business fields. In the context of creative thinking skills, it refers to the ability to visualize concepts, scenarios, and solutions that are beyond the obvious.
Here’s how to include imagination within your creative thinking skills examples on your resume:
Used imaginative thinking to transform complex issues into presentable info charts, making data-driven insights more comprehensible and engaging for clients.
Tips on How to Enhance Your Creative Thinking Skills
The importance of creative thinking has never been more relevant, so it is highly recommended to develop and nurture them. Enhancing creativity is a continuous process that needs support and nurturing throughout one's entire lifetime. Here are a few essential tips:
Tips to Enhance Creative Thinking Skills
Nurture open-mindedness. Keeping your mind open to different perspectives and different influences and understanding all kinds of diversity without judging them is a prerequisite for creative thinking. Judging narrows your ability to see possibilities and options, hindering creative thinking skills.
Embrace curiosity. Don’t be afraid to ask how and why. Seek to understand things more deeply and explore different viewpoints, ideas, and concepts. Curiosity will lead you to step out of your comfort zone, and that’s where creativity begins.
Accept failure. If you find it hard to overcome your mistakes and make peace with the fact that failure is sometimes inevitable, know that this kind of attitude only limits your creativity. Learning to see mistakes and failures as chances for growth and development is essential for thinking creatively.
Solve riddles and puzzles. These kinds of mental challenges require an unconventional and multifaceted approach. Therefore, they are excellent for practicing your problem-solving and creative skills.
Because skills associated with creative thinking are not as easily quantifiable as, for instance, sales skills, it can be challenging to illustrate these abilities on a resume. That is all the more reason for you to pay even closer attention to presenting these skills appropriately by making use of illustrative examples and detailed descriptions.
In addition to listing and describing your creative thinking skills, another way to highlight your creativity is to include creative hobbies that you engage in within the hobbies section. Employers will take into account the fact that you enjoy putting your creative skills to use in your spare time as evidence that you will not lack creativity in your work. Therefore, using that as a final example of your creative thinking prowess can be a nice way to round things off.