By Michelle James | Posted 3/15/08 | Updated 5/13/23
If you are leading or managing a work team tasked with "being creative" the following are a few practices you can use to establish a creative working culture and get the ball rolling:
Try out and then modify; explore; test in reality. Act on gut feelings even if uncertain where it will lead. Start something, then use real-time feedback to create what's next.
Anticipate natural resistance to new ideas as normal the contraction found when anything new is about to emerge and work through discomfort. Become aware of how it surfaces.
Encourage exploration of ideas; expand on them; diverge and converge; use various creativity techniques for the whole brain. Allow the ideas time to generate other ideas.
Commit time for regular, real-time imagination/innovation sessions. Clearly understand deadlines and projects, but leave room to maneuver within them.
Allow time to be in uncertainty, and let the process incubate, before rushing to solutions. I call this time "emergence time" when the parts have space to unexpectedly come together as evolved and often expanded outcomes.
Look inward (at inspiration and intuition) as well as in the external environment for answers.
Take risks and use mistakes. Avoid neither, and keep in mind a mistake is often a risk that did not pan out the way you hoped. See it as an invitation, letting it lead you to other ideas.
Use the "Yes and" way of co-creating. Learn from other's ideas; accept them; build on them.