Groundhog Day


Category management problem-solving – It’s Groundhog Day today!

By Alison Smith |

One of the first questions I ask when delivering creativity and problem-solving webinars and workshops is:

“Which of the image collections above helps inspire creative and innovative thinking?”

Everyone is very quick to point to the more colourful one followed by an exasperated “of course”.

There’s much laughter when we then consider the environment in which we routinely meet with others in which to think creatively.

That is, we assume, going to the same grey meetings rooms, sitting around the same table we’ve sat behind for years, and that sitting for an hour or more is going to deliver a different perspective and new and innovative thinking miraculously.

I wonder, can the same be said of our lockdown desks and office space?

I know I’m personally missing even the variety of grey meeting rooms in which to meet and discuss ideas with others.

Even my colourful home office feels like a prison, and I’m lucky. I have an office that doesn’t double up as a dining room, classroom or kitchen. Neither am I having to share it with anyone.

That said, I am still having a number of calls when I, or even both of us, are walking outside. I’ll take a mini A5 whiteboard to make notes so that I can walk and talk easily. The notes app works on my phone when I forget.

So what are you doing to break the monotony for you and your teams?

Please share your ideas in the LinkedIn comments so we can all learn from each other in these unprecedented times, and avoid that groundhog day feeling!

*Groundhog Day (Pennsylvania GermanGrund’sau dåkGrundsaudaagGrundsow DawgMurmeltiertagNova ScotiaDaks Day)[1] is a popular North American tradition observed in the United States and Canada on February 2. It derives from the Pennsylvania Dutch superstition that if a groundhog emerging from its burrow on this day sees its shadow due to clear weather, it will retreat to its den and winter will persist for six more weeks; but if it does not see its shadow because of cloudiness, spring will arrive early.


Do get in touch if you’d like to schedule a Developing a creative & innovation mindset session for your team – Alison Smith [email protected]

Further reading

Blog post: Creative thinking for procurement professionals

Blog post: Category management – How do you access your creative side?

Alison Smith

About Alison Smith

Principal Consultant

After 15 years in Procurement in organisations, Alison decided that she wanted to expand that pattern observation, exploration, and problem-solving to help others solve their problems in life and to help them get back on track. Combining her unique experience as a procurement expert and a coach she offers a refreshing approach to personal development for Procurement Professionals.