Thursday, August 21, 2014

How to Integrate the Art and Science of Creativity into the Organization

A creative environment is a place where the humility is appreciated, the curiosity is encouraged, and the creative thinking is rewarded. 

We are all born to be creative, and today’s knowledge workforce has absolutely scientific trait as well. You can no longer afford to just talk about creativity and innovation; you must do it. You have to walk the talk and shape the working environment to inspire the purpose, and unleash the genius of your employees. But how can you effectively integrate the art and science of creativity and innovation into the teams and organizations?
Culture: This question and the associated issues are a matter of the corporate culture. Given the nature of most companies, integration of the art and science of creativity is proportional to the need to maintain and increase the bottom line. The only way to be more creative is to be open minded and find "the snake" to get closer it and overcome fear to do things differently. We are all risking judgment and failure, taking chances to disrupt the status quo by sharing our ideas and putting them into positive action. However, change for the most of the people is typically reactionary rather than proactive or innovative. If this were not the case, (relative to corporations), they would likely be more competitive and culturally healthier as well.
Three intertwined creative instincts: All of us have a creative/artistic side while also having a curious/scientific side. As all humans (without exception) are bestowed with three basic instincts which are HUMILITY (Egoless awareness and acceptance), CURIOSITY (Restlessness with the status quo), and CREATIVITY (Urge to change/improve the status quo). Amazingly, these three basic instincts are intertwined. Humility energizes curiosity and curiosity ignite creativity. In simple words, without humility, curiosity is feeble and without curiosity, creativity is ineffectual. 
Crisis: The best creative environment is a crisis, but even then unless there is a reasonable delegation of decision making; the structure will not be agile enough to respond to the latent nature of a crisis and decisions will take too long. The other problem is that managing a crisis is exhausting. So if you rely on creating an ongoing supply of them, to maintain your command structure, you will quickly burn your people out and performance will degrade further. Moreover, there has been much resistance or problems when it comes embracing and integrating the art and science of creativity and innovation; and companies would indeed become more competitive and culturally healthier-to name just a few areas they would improve. You need to view resistance/problems as opportunities with endless possibilities and exponential value to be discovered.

Trust: It is not always the case that: "Teamwork occurs at a certain stage when in an organization is a high level of trust." Trust starts in our hearts (from the inside out). We are born to trust. It only takes two or more people to have teamwork. Therefore, teamwork can exist in small pockets within an organization is it optimal? No, it would be more effective for everyone to row the boat in the same direction. That trusting teams/relationships are sustained and maintained so long as the level of leadership empowers this dynamic collaborative process to continue, otherwise, people go back to their habitual ways.

Motivation: The greater the excess of resources and diversity; the greater the need for team structures and the greater the need for creativity to keep them motivated. In a crisis the power is concentrated in hands of leader and teams are not possible. Teams are built on a high level of person’s motivation (self-motivation), which cannot be bought. Organizations with a command type of organizational culture indifferent to external innovations. Most of these organizations with real teamwork are headed by strong leaders with original ideas. Team's creativity are inspired and motivated by the leaders, who see, understand and appreciate the merits of different people. If there are no inspiring ideas – people’s motivation is reduced.

All humans are naturally creative. Create and nurture an environment in your organization where humility is appreciated, curiosity is encouraged, and creative thinking is rewarded. You will be amazed that this simple and inexpensive mindset and appropriate actions with this mindset will turn the creative machine in your organization beyond your imagination. Most average leaders will find this approach abstract and beneath their ego and mastery. But, the great leaders understood this eternal truth very well and with that understanding, they took their organizations to the pinnacle of unbelievable success.



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