Will Covid-19 Increase our Creativity Skills? How a coffee shop can still be profitable during these times?

For those that are not familiar with my formula:

AQ (Adaptability Intelligence) = IQ +EQ +CQ (Creative Intelligence)

This couldn’t be more applicable than now. Currently we are experiencing forced Adaptability and Reactive behavior. Being in know of the virus, the programmes and laws in place to address Covid19, understanding what you can and cannot do and how you will be able to meet customer requirements is your IQ. How you chose to handle these drastic measures in terms of your emotional state, not panicking, coping with change in a rational and calm manner, choosing to help others who are less fortunate as well as taking a positive outlook are applicable to your emotional intelligence but the one intelligence that will keep you sane and moving forward is Creative Intelligence.

For those that have attended any of my workshops or listened to my keynotes – now is definitely the time to apply the DCOM Methodology if you have not already done so.

Just a reminder:

D- Divergent Thinking: the ability to come up with many different options and ideas and not to be limited by one idea. For e.g. I am currently sitting at Naked Coffee Shop in Morningside and applying my Creative Divergent thinking as I can already see that tables are a lot emptier than usual. Very soon they will probably have to close as either the government will do a country wide shut-down or their staff will be unable to travel “safely” to work. What are their alternatives?

E.g. Start taking down details of their patrons and creating a Whatsapp group if they haven’t got an online site of yet and start delivering coffee in close proximity. Coffee together with their famous banana bread. This would be the first obvious solution but what would be a non-obvious solutions. This leads us to the next acronym

C- Challenge assumptions: Why Why Why?

In this case we could challenge the following:

  • Why do people need to drink coffee?
  • Why does coffee need to be sold face to face?
  • Why can’t they sell meals for delivery or collection?
  • Why can’t they retail boxes of ingredients for delivery with their best recipes?
  • Why can’t they turn their shop into a training venue for up to 5 people at a time?
  • Why can’t they use partitions and isolate different areas for people wanting to work and drink coffee to feel safer.
  • Why can’t they partner with Dischem and Clicks and with every delivery they include a sachet of their coffee in their Naked Cups to be made at home
  • . The cups could say all different types of messages that make sure people see their brand as still active and as soon as people are able to resort back to normality they will already have increased brand awareness. The Corona virus will pass. It’s how you maintain your brand during this time that matters.


O – Observation

Though our actions and mobility are restricted this should not stop people from observing patterns especially on social media. Brands should be alert to how their customers are engaging with their brand during this isolated time.  For e.g Naked should be accounting for how many people are ordering take away as compared to sitting down, how their repeat customers are changing buying habits. How many people are eating as opposed to just drinking?

And lastly

M – Mashing UP/Conceptual Blending: This is where the magic really happens.

What we do is take words that would have come up in our Divergent process and Challenging assumptions process and start to blend them together for e.g.

  • Coffee + Delivery
  • Coffee + Whatsapp/Instagram + Competition ( people get free coffee if they show a Instagram pic of their most creative way to drink coffee)
  • Coffee + Web + games for kids
  • Coffee + VR ( create a virtual coffee shop) so people get the feeling like the sitting with others and socializing like the VR game whereby you sit with others in a movie house)
  • Ingredients + box + recipes + Whatsapp
  • Dischem + coffee sachets + branded cups + positive/funny message + free delivery
  • Coffee + suppositories
  • Coffee + syringes + Dischem.


I could go on forever but hopefully this gives you some idea how to start flexing your creativity muscle for Creative Intelligence.

Now that we covered all 3 Intelligence’s we should be able to adapt easier to the current reality of Covid19. Fear should be turned into opportunity and panic into the ability to drive creative ideas.

I can promise you this …….the world will never be the same again and if it’s not Covid19 it will be something else. The time to increase your creativity skills are not when disaster strikes but being prepared for situations. So my question: Why are companies and people  not doing this…….My answer – Management believe that learning new skills is not as important as other areas in the business? Creativity could be the difference between the life and death of your company. Prioritise human skill development in your organisations and become Proactive Creatives.

For further information contact me on : 0823761377 or lana@goats2unicorns.com



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