Easter Creativity

You can design and create, and build the most wonderful place in the world. But it takes people to make the dream a reality.” – Walt Disney.

First of all, Happy Easter, He is risen.

Ever get into a discussion of creativity with one of those, “I’m the creative one around here,” or “all creativity comes from one department?”

Well, it’s wrong.  Creativity and creative people are all around you. I’m fortunate enough to work in a place heavily populated with creativity, as this video about Easter shows. The author, writer, and producer, Mark Ornelas isn’t in radio programming or marketing, but his creativity and communication skills are unmistakable.

When it comes to creativity, my mind always wanders over to Walt Disney.  The man was not only creative, but he was so “systematically.”  He established a framework of producing creativity through the lens of three roles.

The Dreamer has the visionary, big picture role.  This is where ideas start.

The Realist is the one who thinks constructively and devises an action plan for the vision.

The Critic (the most familiar role) tests the idea, looks for problems and unintended consequences.

The best ideas come when all three roles are present, but that’s not what typically happens.  If the roles are completely separate instead of a continuum, they fight each other.  Some say that all three roles can be handled by one person, but I know more people who think they are that person than are. The best creativity necessitates all three roles being involved.

So one of three things happens.  We tilt to one role or the other roles, and miss the totality, bringing about a “good idea” that goes nowhere.  Or we outsource our creativity and innovation to people who have convinced us they are that three-in-one person. Lastly, we just stop being creative – we give up on even trying to be more creative.

Creativity isn’t a department or a person, and it’s not a collection of good ideas that, in the end, don’t “put points on the scoreboard” at all.  They’re just cool ideas.

Mark and his video showed me that creativity isn’t that elusive, it’s right under our noses if we look for it.

Beyond Just The Games

 “Unless you are prepared to give up something valuable you will never be able to truly change at all, because you’ll be forever in the control of things you can’t give up.” – Andy Law

Pandora-Xbox-One-WC-640x479

Pandora now has an app for the Microsoft XBOX system.

Not really earth shaking…or is it?

Gaming is huge, which draws people to XBOX, and then XBOX provides them an entrée into movies, the web, and music.

Pandora uses Kinect to allow people to listen, vote, and change songs with just a gesture. So Pandora has now integrated themselves into yet another popular distribution channel. Have you heard the old story about finding a parade getting in front of it?

But both may soon be rendered obsolete as Virtual Reality achieves broad acceptance over the next five years.  Change is a fact of life.

My point here is to show how unimaginative and lame most of our radio apps are. Radio will not continue to succeed by being “good enough,” at a time when the life cycle of an app becomes shorter and shorter.  Let’s do something different that really intrigues the listener/consumer, and be prepared to understand that change is faster and more constant than ever.

Who’s Creative?

“But there’s a difference between having artistic interests and being psychotic. That’s more than a fine line of differentiation, and I do see that a bit too much.” – Crispin Glover

Creativity1

I hear so much about creativity, and I see so little of it.

The world seems to be divided into four groups:

  1. Those who think they’re creative and really aren’t.
  2. Those who really are creative.
  3. Those who think they’re not creative.

You can see my point, perhaps.  I believe God blessed everyone with the ability to be creative in some way, and I think many of the people who think they’re creative really aren’t.  They may be good synthesizers, or good connectors, but they don’t really create.  But if you challenge them on it you’ll be surprised at the vehemence of response!

This is the kind of thing you really only admit to yourself in the dark of night when no one else is around.

My experience is the people who go psycho aren’t the truly creative, but those who think they are but really aren’t.  They’ll go to any length to build an argument about how their creativity is the reason an organization is successful.  They take one crayon from the box and deem that this color is creativity and everything else isn’t.  They’ll pound their square version of creativity into the round hole whatever it takes.  And some of us believe it.

But they’re not the people I really want us to think about.  I’m more interested in the people who think they’re not creative because they don’t understand the universal law. Everyone is creative in their own area in their own way.  Your color is in the crayon box if you’ll just look for it!

I’ve seen a lot of people who misinterpret what creativity is, and continue to believe they’re not, and because that’s their belief they become what they think.  They can’t be creative because everyone has always told them they weren’t, or held them back from playing around, or simply reinforced their belief system.

You, my friend, are creative.  I don’t know in what way, and I don’t know how, but you are. God has blessed us all with creativity, not just a chosen few.  If you don’t give up on it, you’ll find your creativity when the opportunity comes along.  As long as you haven’t shut that door.

Innovate the Pixar way

The thing about working at Pixar is that everyone around you is smarter and funnier and cleverer than you and they all think the same about everyone else. It’s a nice problem to have.” – Andrew Stanton

playground

Authors Bill Capodagli & Lynn Jackson, in their book “Innovate the Pixar Way: Business Lessons from the World’s Most Creative Corporate Playground,” suggest that “Pixar is a “playground” that will inspire you to:

– Dream like a child.
– Believe in your playmates.
– Dare to jump in the water and make waves.
– Do unleash your childlike potential

I don’t know about you, but I want to work in a playground like that!

One other Pixar secret is that they pay both the creative and technical people the same money.  They realize they are BOTH important to their success.  The greatest story y0u come up with isn’t going to do much if it isn’t translated through the technology.  Think programming and IT, or programming and engineering.

Everyone at your organization has a place and purpose, and if they don’t you need to get rid of them.  True leaders will understand the value of all, not just one.

 

Creativity Remembered

“I’d like to be remembered as one who kept my priorities in the right order. We live in a changing world, but we need to be reminded that the important things have not changed, and the important things will not change if we keep our priorities in proper order.” – S. Pruett Cathy
 
 

S. Truett Cathy died recently  Not the worlds most well-known name, but he founded, and grew into a billion dollar organization, the Chic-Fil-A restaurants across America.  A few years back I read a book of his, and was inspired by his own inspirational way of working with his teams.  He was also a constant marketer and cheerleader for Chic-Fil-A.  One memorable moment was when he was flying and the plane was delayed for some time.  He spoke with the captain, who gave him permission to pass out cards for free “Chikin” to everyone on board.  Changed the mood of the people on board and created brand memorability for everyone.

His Vice President of Marketing was at Momentum, and talked about the leadership style of the organization.  One of his main points was for leaders to see the value in their people.  Too often we see people as problems or something to be managed, but if you look for their value, your own perception of them will change.

What do you see when you look at those who report directly to you?  Do you see a tool to be used, or the value the person contributes to your organization?