Wednesday, April 30, 2014

How to Build a Creative Workplace and Workforce?

CREATIVITY, has to become the philosophy, and part of DNA in an organization. 

Today’s digital workforce is multi-generational, multi-cultural and multi-tasking; today’s digital workplace is always on, always connected, you can work anytime and anywhere, with more seamlessly cross-functional collaboration and cross-geographic interaction. But more strategically, how to build a creative working environment to inspire innovation and encourage creative problems solving in business? What are the best practices, or next practices to reinvent the digital way of work, and what are the roadblocks on the way?

Leadership supports and develops creativity throughout the organization. This begins with leading by example. It includes establishing a climate that encourages creativity, and it also means investing the time and resources to develop domain skills in people and effective collaboration in groups. Without proper leadership, creativity is sporadic rather than integrated into the thinking and activities of the organization. Defining an innovation leader is a way to coordinate the innovation effort by leading the process him/herself.  

Empower people to be creative: Helping people recognize when they are being creative shows them what you're expecting from them when you ask them to be "creative". A group that puts together a social function is being creative, a programmer that finds a way around a roadblock is creative; a leader who spends just a few minutes contemplating a fringe solution is creative, etc. “Business Creativity" must be something to do with the customers as digital is the age of customer, to create an interactive environment with customers, so that you can reverse engineer from customer to a creative product.

To be willing to fail: Some of the most cutting edge companies that hire brilliant and creative employees find that they're afraid to leave their comfort zone in order to innovate and act on new ideas. The company leaders have to push them to risk - encouraging them to leave their safety nets. Willingness to fail is an important factor which must be fostered by top managers. Either they achieve that fail is tolerate, and even promoted within the company culture, or few innovation is to be generated by employees.

Creativity has to be in the DNA of a business. Creative thinking or possible the more abstract, CREATIVITY, has to become the philosophy in an organization, innovation is part of corporate culture. After collecting poor to terrible, good to great to fantastic stories of creative thinking or creativity being truly included, it needs to be truly spread throughout organizations via following actions: 

Creative workplace is based on a triangle with three vertices: culture, method and people. 
-Culture must be fostered from directors downwards, otherwise no real sponsorship takes place. 
-Method is required for a good performance, facilitating creativity teams and providing proper creativity tools. 
-People must enthusiastically participate, getting proper empowerment and noticing that their initiatives do arrive to the end. 

Overcome obstacles: There are numerous roadblocks on innovation journey, here are a few:
-Fear of judgment is one of the biggest obstacles to the creative process, so If the group has worked well together before, you must establish an environment that encourages listening and welcomes tangents with the understanding of eventual focus. If it's a new group, story boarding will help the shy ones express themselves more freely
Convergence –Divergence: Many ideas do not turn into innovations and that is the 'fault' of careless convergence which leads to inadequate execution.

-Not enough resources 
-Bad timing 
-missing technology 
-missing markets 
-poor handling by supervisors, team leaders, managers, bosses, CEOs 
-lack of support 
-killing of idea nature of too many people 

“The most important factor in business creativity is "clearing a space for it to grow." Like building a building, first you need to prepare the ground so a solid foundation can be poured. When the environment and space is cleaned and prepared completely.... the creative efforts of many can flourish." -Ken Stevens


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