The standard definition of divergent is differing or deviating. Implicitly, at least for me, this has a somewhat negative connotation.
To be a divergent thinker, however, is a characteristic to which one should strive. Developed originally in the 1950s by psychologist Joy Paul (J.P.). Guilford, divergent thinking is a important part of creativity. Guilford associated it with four main characteristics:
+ fluency: the ability to produce a large number of solutions to a problem very quickly
+ flexibility: the capacity to consider a number of different approaches to a problem simultaneously
+ originality: the tendency to produce ideas and solutions different from most other people
+ elaboration: the ability to think through the details of an idea and execute it effectively
A practical 2011 interpretation of this idea from 1950: be quick on your feet, think broad and yet deep, think out of the box, be thorough, do it well.
Know when to be prime. Know when to be composite.
Stand out by striving towards divergent thinking at every occasion.