Thursday, May 04, 2006
How To Crush Creativity At Your Workplace
Why in heaven's name would someone want to crush creativity? Why would you want to hear about it?
The answer is: Because simple jealousies and small goals crowd the workplace too often and it has to stop. You want to hear about it because you spend the greater part of your life 'on the job' working. You need to know why and how workplaces in America---your workplace, and many around the world, are often stifling creativity in workers, managers, product developers and others.
Then you can start to change it.
Creativity doesn't occur in a vacuum. Remember I have often said that those that strive to lead a more creative life-style choose thier environments! There is an innate assumption by most people that you're simply stuck in the work environment you have each day--- that it's almost like inheritance. You either get a facilitating creative, joyful, upbeat job site or you don't!
In consulting radio clients I always assure them that I can tell where their station is in the ratings, whether they are succesful with large and growing audiences,--- just by walking down thier hallways. I didn't need to listen to their station on the air, I didn't need to see their Arbitron (ratings) books.
This isn't becasue I am full of hubris; it's through years of experience. I've worked at and programmed enough stations that were winners but were more often losers. If a radio station was filled with workers that were marose, sullen, quiet, careful and gaurded, it was always a losing station. You could literally feel it when you entered.
On the other hand, if you had people bumping off the walls, if you heard laughter somewhere, if there was a casual, free floating ambiance. You had a winner. It is obvious.
The first environment (losing) was always dramatically different from the second. The first just happened. The second was deliberately developed from effort, built out of a desire to truly enjoy the process of success.
None of my clients in the first, and not one of their employees wanted to fail. They just had never tasted great success and did things that helped them fail---that's all.
That's where the old adage--- 'success breeds success'--- and conversely, 'failure spawns failure' come from. I knew if I could introduce just a smidgeon of success, on any level, everything would grow from there.
I had to start with the environment. And so do you!
In my next blog I'll show you two ways to actually create an environment at a workplace. One that will foster great creative output. The other will "crush" it.