In my doctoral research on What makes a Creative Organisations I asked both profit and non-profit leaders what does an ideal creative environment look like?
They answered with the following 6 insights:
1. It is open and receptive to ideas.
It is not enough to produce big, new ideas but an innovative culture has to be open to receiving them.
2. Continuously experiments.
In a creative organisation people are free to conduct smart, quick and simple tests. What’s more they are encouraged to do it all the time on every aspect of their work.
3. Enables people to take risks and occasionally fail.
This is a continuation of the previous point. Having the courage ad imagination to try new things means that you are pushing the envelope and will occasionally fail.
In fact, more accurately you will fail often but you will also win.
4. Encourages people to have fun.
This is not like rolling around the floor type laughing type fun but a joy of being with people that want to achieve their goals and smile at the same time.
A creative place or space is one where laughter and joy abounds.
This is why one of the first things I try and do in any brainstorming sessions to make sure everyone is enjoying themselves.
The goal might be serious but the process is not.
An ideal creative environment is one which encourages a sense of playfulness.
5. Operates at the edge of chaos.
By this respondents meant there was a dynamic tension between order and chaos.
Too much structure kills creativity as does too much randomness.
This is a dynamic space where there is structure within limits.
It is a space where new ideas and concepts can emerge.
6. But retains a focus on results.
The last point is particularly important. Respondents in creative organisations stressed that their culture was not a soft one.
People were judged on their results.
Creative individuals, groups and teams want to have their ideas tested in the market-place.
How does your business or organisation stack up?
If you need help in building a more creative culture then please call or email.
Yours in ideas.