I’m feeling a warm glow of appreciation after reading Polly LaBarre’s article for managementexchange.com – Cultivating the “Supply Side of the Creative Economy.” LaBarre talks about David Kelley of IDEO and the d.school he founded at Stanford.
I have long believed in cultivating the creative sides of people, especially those who don’t think of themselves as classically creative. Part of me longs to go to that school and see what’s going on.
Her article lists several excellent tips:
Desensitize yourself to failure
Kelly refers to John Cassidy’s book, Juggling for the Complete Klutz, where “he spends the first half of the book getting you used to the ball hitting the ground.”
La Barre goes on to say, “Another pathway is to take people out of their domain of expertise and get them to solve a problem in an arena where they aren’t encumbered by their knowledge and experience.”
I fondly remember when I worked in advertising as a writer, and spent many wonderful hours hanging out with graphic designers and playing with their art supplies. I knew I wasn’t an artist so I felt no need to compete with them, but managed to produce some projects that I’m still pleased with. LaBarre writes, The fresh eyes and freedom that comes along with naivete not only produces more (and often surprising) insight, it also offers a bonus boost of creative confidence.” This was true for me.
Do to Think
Kelley advises, the next time you sit down to make a plan, “just jump in and build a prototype and iterate.” This Agile method is proving very successful in a number of industries.
Don’t Look for Answers – Ask More Questions
Inquiry beats certainty, and “an open, curious [individual] can attract more perspectives, surface more possibilities, and enlist more help than one closed off by certitude.”
Creativity is not a magic essence bestowed on a select few. It can be practiced, developed, and realized in all of us.