150 professionals across a range of industries were invited to participate in a discussion on Bilendi & respondi’s new qualitative research platform, Bilendi Discuss. Bilendi Discuss allows market researchers to carry out one-to-one or one-to-many conversations through participants’ preferred messaging apps, such as WhatsApp, Messenger etc., or web portal. Uniquely, it has a built-in ChatGPT-powered assistant built on proprietary algorithms and prompt engineering techniques which can effortlessly analyse large amounts of text, image, video or audio responses. It is then able to produce an evaluation based on these responses and support it using the captured verbatims. This means that Bilendi & respondi were easily able to conduct and interpret a simultaneous conversation with multiple individuals. 

The study began by asking participants to describe their view of what it meant to be an ‘original thinker’. Free answers were encouraged from all participants. The AI-assistant, BARI (Bilendi Artificial Research Intelligence), was able to instantly analyse these verbatims and categories them into 4 main topics: 

·       INNOVATIVATION AND PROACTIVITY - Someone who finds new and different ways of working.

·       THINKING OUTSIDE THE BOX - Individuals who question the status quo. 

·       PROBLEM-SOLVING AND IMPROVEMENT-ORIENTED – People that think creatively to improve situations, tasks, and ways of working.

·       LEADERSHIP AND INDEPENDENCE – People who are not afraid to take risks, challenge authority, and make decisions based on their own opinions and convictions. 

The study then asked the group two factors that promote original thinking at work. 32% of respondents thought that the allocation of sufficient time and resources for exploration by their organisation was key.  Autonomy in decision-making came in second, highlighted by 26%.  Having autonomy in decision-making suggests that job seniority is an important factor in being able to think originally at work.

Conversely, participants were then asked two factors that discourage original thinking at work. Unsurprisingly, the main factors highlighted were ‘micromanagement and excessive control from superiors’ (35% ) and ‘fear of criticism or ridicule' (27%), showing how important it is for senior management to create an environment for creativity from the top down. 

Finally, the group was asked the two factors that allowed instinct to take precedence over rational thought at work. Surprisingly, and somewhat counter to the findings of the previous questions, ‘high-pressure situations where quick decisions are required’ (34%) and ‘circumstances where there is limited data to analyse’ (21%) came in top. This suggests that the participants did not necessarily equate originality and creative thinking, with instinctive behaviour.  

So what does that tell us? The results are clear, if you want to foster creative thinking at work, give your team time and resources, give them autonomy in decision-making. Don’t micromanage or ridicule. All sensible stuff. Deliberately putting them under pressure and restricting the flow of information sounds like a recipe for disaster regarding creativity. However, it could be the way to go if you need a flash of instinctive thinking. Food for thought. 

Bilendi & Respondi are sponsoring this year’s MAD//Fest event and will be on picnic table T14. Drop by and say ‘Hi!’ and take part in a Bilendi Discussion demo. One participant will win a free Bilendi Discuss research project for their company and 3 runners up will win a £50 Apple voucher. Find out more about Bilendi Discuss here:https://www.bilendi.co.uk/static/bilendi-discuss