Creativity for Charities: How to Apply the SIT Techniques to Be More Creative and Resourceful

Episode 038: Boost Creative Thinking By Being Specific – Ten Tips to Generate Better Ideas
April 12, 2021
Episode 039: No Time? No Problem. Put Clutter to Work for You to Be More Creative
April 19, 2021

Creativity for Charities: How to Apply the SIT Techniques to Be More Creative and Resourceful

Charities and nonprofit organizations need to be just as innovative – and in some ways, they have to be even more innovative than for-profit organizations.

Think about it. 

Charities and nonprofits have limited resources. They have constant pressure on their mission and they need to develop the skills of creativity so they can be more resourceful and see new opportunities. 

And just like any other skill, creativity can be learned.

Applying the techniques of the or SIT method, nonprofit organizations can break the fixedness they have in the way they currently do things. It doesn’t matter which charity, the key is deciding on your closed world and looking for ways to break fixedness. 

Three Areas of Creativity in the Nonprofit World

  1. Fundraising

Example:

Neuroendocrine Tumor Research Foundation

NETRF is a nonprofit that works to find cures for carcinoid cancer, pancreatic cancer, neuroendocrine cancer, and related diseases. Their goal is to collect money so they could sponsor research to help eliminate the suffering of these patients and their families.

How this nonprofit could apply the innovation method:

Here, you could apply the attribute dependency technique, where you create a correlation between one attribute and another attribute. As one thing changes, another thing changes.

Applying this to this nonprofit, it could be that as one thing about the researcher changes, another thing about the funding changes. For example, if they reach a breakthrough, then funding goes up or down. Or when they reach a milestone in terms of the number of people recruited in their study, something changes in their funding as well. Then it becomes a more defined program and more creative.

  1. Expanding their reach

Example:

America’s Packard Museum

This museum has the largest collection of Packard automobiles. It’s the repository of all things Packard – the history, the family, and the company. 

How this nonprofit could apply the innovation method:

Let’s say you’re a volunteer in a museum and you want to curate a display. Just zoom down on a well-defined closed world, and then apply an SIT technique. In this case, you could probably pull out the task unification technique, where you take a component and force it to do something other than what it has been designed to do. 

  1. Delivering that actual mission.

Example:

Team Rubicon primarily does two things: recruit veterans and assist communities with disasters.

How this nonprofit could apply the innovation method:

To make sure they have a flowing pipeline of veterans, they could do it creatively by applying the closed-world principle and the division technique, which involves reorganizing the process – and which is what the recruiting process is all about.

To hear more on how to apply the SIT techniques in the nonprofit world, listen to the full podcast episode here: Episode 037: Creativity for Charities.