Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Three "C's in Building an innovative team

Create and nurture an environment in your organization where curiosity is encouraged, and creative thinking is rewarded.

There are still full of serendipity in creativity: How many forms of creativity are there? How are they different? How are they similar? Isn't what makes them similar or different, also what makes them creativity? Creativity has many forms and manifestations. Take the standpoint that creativity has its starting point within an individual. Individual creativity is absolutely critical, but how to build a creative team to harness collective creativity?

Cognition: Inclusiveness is a necessity to sow the seeds of innovation. The team members with the cognitive difference can understand things from a different angle, and bring the new perspective to the table. The exercise of blending people's problem-solving abilities to produce the desired outcome is a worthwhile thing to do. It is not just a mere cumulation of the creative inputs of those involved. It is also not only a synchronizing of their individual inputs to make something that no one individual would achieve. It is more than that. It has its own dynamic that is in a state of constant flux. It builds up a momentum that draws creative contributions from the participants that they did not previously conceive or understood they were capable of.

Capacity: Whether creativity can be collective is clear and flows from what seems like an expansive, generous, creative minds, how creative is the team depends on the creative capacity of its member. You can get a diverse group of people together in one room and still not have "creativity" if the participating individuals are not particularly creative. What matters is how creative are the individuals. Hence, the collective creativity depends on varying factors, because the team perhaps have different intents (destructive vs. constructive), different processes (enforcement vs collaboration), different participants (compliant vs. creative), different outcomes (disharmony vs harmony) and different philosophies (openness vs close-mindedness). The workplace needs to be designed to help employees at all levels within an organization (from leaders to front-line) understand and develop their creative capacity to solve problems and exploit opportunities in new and innovative ways, the tool utilizes cutting-edge narrow band psychometrics to diagnose, assess and train the core four factors of creativity namely: cognitive processes, personality, motivation, and confidence.

Culture: Once we take into consideration the influences around this person (environment, culture, principles, etc.), how to build a creative team and the associated issues are a matter of the corporate culture building and leadership effectiveness. Organizations with a command type of organizational culture indifferent to external innovations and have innovation inertia. Most of the creative teams and innovative organizations with real teamwork are headed by strong leaders with original ideas. The spirit comes from the top. 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. At creative organizations with highly innovative leadership, people are encouraged and given the time resources to work on new things that excite them, all are required to produce new ideas, people are often trained in creative methods and techniques, the business model is often challenged, everyone has a personal creativity objective at work and there is much humor to go around, fewer office politics, more professional learning, and sharing.

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. All humans are naturally creative. Create and nurture an environment in your organization where curiosity is encouraged, and creative thinking is rewarded. The great leaders understand this and with that understanding, they build an innovative culture and take their organizations to the pinnacle of unbelievable success of innovation.


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