A lot of times when people claim they’re not creative, what they’re really suggesting is that they lack an innate ability to generate creative ideas. While it is true that this skill can be taught, a new study (PDF) from Cornell University suggests that coming up with ideas may not be where we actually face the most barriers.
Experienced creative problem solvers know that a key part of generating ideas (diverging) is deferring judgement. Then once you’ve come up with a substantial set of ideas, you choose the best from the bunch to develop further (converging) – at which point you are, of course, judging them. The study suggests that it is this evaluation phase where implicit negative biases toward creativity become a problem. Continue Reading
In the Sitio Maligaya community in the Philippines, a few residents have found a creative way to provide indoor lighting to people without access to electric lights. Watch:
Why are some organizations consistently good at innovating and/or adapting while others seem to be blindsided by change? Is it because of their disciplined innovation process or the knowledge and skills of their people? Or is it their determination to build a culture where challenging assumptions is not only encouraged, but expected? Our IBM Creative Leadership Study found that leaders who embrace the dynamic tension between creative disruption and operational efficiency can create new models of extraordinary value.
What, specifically, enables leading-edge organizations to capitalize on the inherent complexity in today’s environment and catalyze innovation within their business models, products and services? The brand new IBM Creative Leadership Study found that to succeed in an increasingly interconnected world, creative leaders avoid choosing between unacceptable alternatives. Instead, they use the power inherent in these dualities to invent new assumptions and create new models geared to an ever-changing world.
Continue reading to see a short introduction video from Steve Gray, one of the IBM researchers, presented at the 2011 CPSI Conference, as well as a link to the full report. Continue Reading
I have never found idolizing people to be very useful. I don’t want to suggest that Steve Jobs shouldn’t be recognized for his accomplishments, on the contrary, I think his legacy should be celebrated, but I also think recognizing someone’s talent and idolizing him are two slightly different things.
There seem to be two traps people fall into by idolizing the likes of Steve Jobs: they become so enraptured that they give up all hope of ever doing anything significant, or they try to be exactly like him in order to replicate his success. Neither reaction is very productive. Giving up on innovation because someone else is a master seems silly, and trying to beat Jobs at his own game is utterly nonsensical – even an exceptional amount of effort to yield dismal returns. Continue Reading
Arthur Koestler, the author of The Act of Creation, concluded that creativity happens at boundaries. These boundaries come in all shapes and sizes. In my case, it was the boundaries between disciplines that led me into a new field of creative leadership inquiry.
My journey started many years ago working in the IT industry when I began to research creativity and apply my knowledge to help individuals and organizations develop their creative potential to facilitate innovation. I bumped into the boundary between creativity and leadership when I joined The Center for Creative Leadership in 1990. At the time, I saw the fields of creativity and leadership as separate domains. My work mirrored this separation in many ways, until a wise group of people encouraged me to see how the two fields intersect. This led to inquiry into how leadership is a creative process in its own right and is pivotal in creating a climate and culture that promotes organizational innovation.
Nokia recently launched the N8 phone which has the capability to shoot HD movies. To showcase the new feature, they created a contest: The Nokia Shorts 2011. Eight filmmakers where given a budget of $5,000, two Nokia N8 phones, and just a few short weeks to turn their idea into a finished film. The results are astonishing.
This is the winning film from JW Griffiths:
The future of work is not about dull routine, it’s about curiosity, exploration, flexibility and imagination. Gamestorming is the future of work, it involves people, paper, and passion. It’s a mashup of game principles, game mechanics, and work. It’s about weaving energy and fast-feedback into your work, meetings with co-workers, and design and development activities. Watch author of the book Gamestorming, Dave Gray, explain the ins-and-outs. (video shot at CPSI Conference 2011)
Imagine a group of executives huddled around a board room table. They are staring so intensely at their annual sales figures that they could burn a hole through the chart. Their flagship product – one that had carried the company for over 50 years – was tanking! What happened next transformed the company into a century-long market leader. In fact, very few product innovations have done as much to re-shape (literally) customers in the marketplace. Of course I am talking about one of the greatest inventions of all time – the Double Stuf Oreo cookie.
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