Everybody wants creative solutions to problems and when they are looking to hire people to help them find creative solutions, everybody asks for creative problem solvers who can “think outside of the box” or who are “out of the box” thinkers.
Everybody does this. What’s outside the box about that?
What we need is a new term or phrase to describe thinking that’s outside the box. In fact, let’s stop passively describing it and start actively measuring it. Let’s rationalize out of the box thinking. Let’s give it a metric. Creative workers will tally up their Eurekas! and divide them by hours worked. Freelancers can include the figure on their CVs and recruiters can ask about it on their questionnaires.
“How many Eurekas per Hour do you average?” a recruiter might ask. Once the measurement becomes the established norm, a recruiter might slip into shorthand and ask, “What’s your Eureka Rate?” At which point, we’ll know that we’ve finally slipped free of the box and I’ll need a new way to differentiate myself.
My response will be, “Hard to say what my Eureka Rate is. My box of Eurekas overflows.”