Unleash people’s creativity in the workplace

The ability to unleash people’s creativity in the workplace is a challenge in every team and organisation. At ImagineNation™ we acknowledge that innovation is the result of a COLLISION between different perspectives and thought patterns, we also acknowledge that creativity, invention and innovation are the result distinctly different processes. In our learning programs we initiate intentional and constructive collisions that disrupt and challenge the status quo to ignite, unleash and mobilize people’s creativity in the workplace. By developing, manifesting and maximizing the creative intelligence required to be inventive and innovative, by challenging and questioning existing perspectives and thought patterns in deeply contrary, disruptive and provocative ways.

Research reveals that all successful innovators take responsibility for facilitating the innovation process, they don’t delegate it, and they do it themselves! They intentionally stimulate, activate and generate new perspectives and thought patterns that unleash people’s creativity in the workplace, leading to the discovery of creative  ideas and innovative solutions. 

Authors Jeffrey H. Dyer, Hal B. Gregersen, Clayton Christensen, in their recent article “The Innovators DNA” in HBR, outlines the results of their six year study to uncover the origins of creative – and often disruptive – business strategies in particularly innovative companies. Their research led them to identify five “discovery skills” that distinguish the most creative executives:

.   Associating
.   Questioning
.   Observing
.   Experimenting
.   Networking 

They found that innovative entrepreneurs (who are also CEO’s) spend 50% more time on these discovery activities than do CEO’s with no track record for innovation.

Underlying these five critical skill sets are what we call, the innovation be-ing states or mindsets that drive the behaviours that challenge the status quo and unleash people’s creativity in the workplace. 

Associating; is the ability to successfully connect seemingly unrelated questions, problems or ideas from different fields;
 To develop this skill we need to cultivate an open mind and adopt divergent thinking processes to view questions, problems and ideas from the outside or from the whole system. 
.   To understand and deconstruct issues by taking a whole systems perspective, considering both the macro and micro forces at play, to expose patterns and trends and make the associations and connections.

Questioning; is the willingness and ability to constantly inquire and ask questions that challenge the common wisdom, status quo and operating assumptions. Doing this requires us to imagine and synthesize opposites and embrace constraints.
.   To develop this skill set we need to cultivate an open heart, be detached, inquisitive and curious, to seek possibilities and pay deep attention.  
.   To learn how be present and deeply attend to one another, to observe, listen and ask questions at the generative level.
.   To challenge the status quo by inquiring and constructively debating to achieve high levels or meta thinking to generate imaginative and creative ideas and unexpected solutions.

Observing; is the ability to pay deep attention by scrutinizing common phenomena to gain insights about new ways of doing things.
.   To develop this skill set we need to be able to perceive, sense and see the operating patterns from the whole system perspective.
.   To zoom in to the detail and tactical aspects as well as to zoom up to the conceptual and strategic aspects of the question, problem or idea.
.   To work with, and not against, what could be wanting to emerge from the whole.

Experimenting; is the ability to actively try our new ideas by creating, iterating, pivoting prototypes and launching pilot and minimal viable products. It requires us to construct interactive experiences and to try and provoke unorthodox responses to see what insights and distinctions emerge.
.   To develop this skills set we need to create the openings, or right hand turns’ and inflection points that transform questions, problems and ideas into innovative opportunities
.   To accept that mistakes and failures are a natural part of doing business, allowing people to fail small, fast and cheaply to create the safe space for allowing them.
.   To be courageous by creating new opportunities for learning and change through experimentation and prototyping by be-ing adaptive, persistent and resilient.

Networking; is the willingness to devote time and energy to finding and testing ideas through a network of diverse individuals. Being generous and going out of their way to meet people with different ideas and perspectives to share and extend their own knowledge domains
.   To develop this skill we need to cultivate an open will, be detached and listen for the possibility in every encounter.  
.   To constantly interact with others to create, notice and act upon chance opportunities and make successful decisions by using our intuition and gut feelings.
.   To be willing to be intentionally disruptive & deviant, to dispute the status quo, to shift perceptions & create openings as to ‘what could be’.
.   To generatively debate, not to win or be right, but to create unconventional and unexpected ideas and solutions.

Finally, be courageous and put your own unique “ding in the universe” and challenge the status quo by;

  • Seeking the connections to seemingly unrelated questions, problems or ideas from different fields and from the whole system.
  • Constantly asking questions to disrupt the status quo, conventional wisdom and operating assumptions.
  • Experimenting with new ideas and taking more risks.
  • Testing ideas through collaborating, networking and debating with deviant and diverse others to extend your knowledge domain
  • Embracing and crystallizing a powerful vision and passionate purpose for innovation and change!

Why not explore our our range of generative discovery learning programs to initiate intentional and constructive collisions that disrupt and challenge the status quo to ignite, unleash and mobilize people’s creativity in the workplace.

At ImagineNation™ we provide innovation coaching, education and culture consulting to help businesses achieve their innovation goals. Because we have done most of the learning and actioning of new hybrid mindsets, behaviors and skill-sets already, we can help your businesses also do this by opening people up to their innovation potential.

Contact us now at janet@imaginenation.com.au to find out how we can partner with you to learn, adapt and grow your business in the digital age.