Creativity and Innovation
FRAMING CREATIVITY AND INNOVATIONCREATIVITY AND INNOVATION ARE IMPORTANT FOR ORGANIZATIONAL SUSTAINABILITYAT THE MOST BASIC LEVEL, CREATIVITY AND INNOVATION ARE VIEWED AS PROCESSES BY WHICH INDIVIDUALS WORKING TOGETHER IN A COMPLEX SOCIAL SYSTEM CREATE A VALUABLE, USEFUL NEW PRODUCT, SERVICE, IDEA, PROCEDURE, OR WORK PROCESS.
CREATIVITY TOWARD A DEFINITIONCREATIVITY IS THE ABILITY TO BRING SOMETHING NEW INTO EXISTANCE (Webster Dictionary)
CREATIVITY IS THE ABILITY TO GENERATE NOVAL IDEAS THAT ARE USEFUL AT A GIVEN MOMENT (Woerkum et al, 2007)
CREATIVITY IS THE DEVELOPMENT OF IDEAS ABOUT PRODUCTS, PRACTICES, SERVICES, OR PROCEDURES THAT ARE NOVAL AND POTENTIALLY USEFUL TO THE ORGANIZATION (Amabile, 2003)
CREATIVITY IS A PROCESS THAT INTEGRATES BITS AND PIECES OF INFORMATION THAT RESIDE WITHIN THE MIND OF AN INDIVIDUAL OR A COLLECTIVE OF INDIVIDUALS THAT THROUGH SYNERGISTIC PROCESS ARE LIKELY TO RESULT IN A NOVAL IDEA ABOUT PRODUCTS, PRACTICES, SERVICES, OR PROCEDURES
Conceptual Links among Creative Persons, Processes, Situations, and ProductsIndividual Characteristics Cognitive abilities/style Personality Intrinsic motivation KnowledgeGroup Characteristics Norms Cohesiveness Size Diversity Roles Task Problem-solving approaches Organizational Characteristics Culture Resources Rewards Strategy Structure TechnologyCreativeBehaviorOrganizationalCreativityCreative Situation Enhancers ConstraintsInput(Creative persons, groups,organization)Transformation(Creative processcreative situation) Output(Creativeproduct)
Characteristics of Adaptors and InnovatorsFor problem solving
For solutionsTend to take the problem as defined and generate novel creative idea aimed at doing things better. Immediate high efficiency is the keynote of high adaptors.
Generally generates a few well-chosen and relevant solutions that they generally find sufficient but that sometimes fail to contain ideas needed to break the existing pattern completely. InnovatorsSource: Adapted with permission from M. J. Kirton, Adaptors and Innovators: Problem solvers in Organizations, in Innovation: A Cross-Disciplinary Perspective, K. Gronhaug and G. Kaufmann, eds, (Oslo: Norwegian University Press, 1988), p.72Implications Adaptors InnovatorsTend to redefine generally agreed problems, breading preciously perceived restraints, generating solutions aimed at doing things differently.
Produce numerous ideas, many of which may not be either obvious or acceptable to others. Such a pool often contains ideas, if they can be identified, that may crack hitherto intractable problems.
Characteristics of Adaptors and InnovatorsFor policies
For organizational fit
For potential creativityPrefer well-established structured situations. Best at incorporating new data or events into existing structures of policies.
Essential to the ongoing functions, but in times of unexpected changes may have some difficulty moving out of their established roles.
Capable of generating original, creative solutions, but which reflect their overall approach to problem solving. InnovatorsSource: Adapted with permission from M. J. Kirton, Adaptors and Innovators: Problem solvers in Organizations, in Innovation: A Cross-Disciplinary Perspective, K. Gronhaug and G. Kaufmann, eds, (Oslo: Norwegian University Press, 1988), p.72Implications Adaptors InnovatorsPrefer unstructured situations. Use new data as opportunities to set new structures or policies accepting the greater attendant risk.
Essential in times of change or crisis, but may have some trouble applying themselves to ongoing organizational demands.
Capable of generating original, creative solutions, but which reflect their overall approach to problem solving.
Characteristics of Adaptors and InnovatorsFor collaboration
For perceived behaviorHigh adaptors do not get along easily with innovators. Middle adaptors may act as bridges.
Seen by innovators as sound, conforming, safe, predictable, relevant, inflexible, wedded to the system, and intolerant of ambiguity.
InnovatorsSource: Adapted with permission from M. J. Kirton, Adaptors and Innovators: Problem solvers in Organizations, in Innovation: A Cross-Disciplinary Perspective, K. Gronhaug and G. Kaufmann, eds, (Oslo: Norwegian University Press, 1988), p.72Implications Adaptors InnovatorsHigh innovators do not get along easily with adaptors. Middle innovators may act as bridges.
Seen by adaptors as unsound, impractical, risky, abrasive, often shocking their opposites and creating dissonance.
Components of Individual CreativityIncludesKnowledge about the domainTechnical skills requiredSpecial domain-relevant talent
Depends onInnate cognitive abilitiesInnate perceptual and motor skillsFormal and informal education IncludesAppropriate cognitive styleImplicit or explicit heuristics for generating novel ideasConducive work style
Depends onTrainingExperience in idea generationPersonality characteristics IncludesAttitudes toward the taskPerceptions of own motivation for undertaking the task
Depends onInitial level of intrinsic motivation to the taskPresence or absence of salient extrinsic constraints in the social environmentIndividual ability to cognitively minimize extrinsic constraints Source: Adapted with permission from T.M. Amabile, From Individual Creativity to Organizational innovation, in Innovation: A Cross-Disciplinary Perspective, K. Gronhaug and G. Kaufmann, eds, (Oslo: Norwegian University Press, 1988), p. 149.Domain-Relevant Skills Creativity-Relevant Skills Task Motivation
The Imperatives of Creativity *Creativity imperativesCognitive characteristicsIntelligence, Knowledge, Problem findingImagination/use of imageryAesthetic sensitivityPersonality characteristicsPersistence, CuriosityCourage/risk takingSelf-confidence, Intrinsic motivationWork behavior orientationIndependence of judgmentCommunication CollaborationAchieving recognitionShaping the environment* Contributed by Professor Nirmal K. Sethia, Department of Management & Organization, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90089-1421. We are grateful to Professor Sethia.Creative Work Creative Individual
How to turn a potentially creative person into an actively creative person?* (1)Freedom: Freedom from external constraints can lead to creative behavior. The notion of freedom includes the following managerial actions:Provide freedom to try new ways of performing tasks.Permit activities or tasks to be different for different individuals.Allow an appropriate amount of time for the accomplishment of tasks.Allow time for nontaskrelated thinking and development of creative ideas.Encourage selfinitiated projects.Respect an individuals need to work alone.Encourage divergent activities by providing resources and room.
* Adopted and modified from Isaksen, 1987
How to turn a potentially creative person into an actively creative person? (2)Support: Noncontrolling support can be given in the following ways:Support and reinforce unusual ideas and responses of individuals.Communicate confidence in the individuals.Tolerate complexity and disorder.Provide constructive feedback.Reduce concern over failure.Create a climate of mutual respect and acceptance among individuals.Encourage interpersonal trust.Listen to individuals.
How to turn a potentially creative person into an actively creative person? (3)Participation: Involving the individual in the decisionmaking process as well as the problemsolving process (participation) provides motivation that encourages creative behavior. Participation can be enhanced in the following ways:Encourage individuals to have choices and to be part of the goalsetting process.Encourage involvement of those interested in the problem dont limit involvement across jobs, departments, and divisions.Challenge individuals to find new tasks and problems.Encourage questioning.Encourage a high quality of interpersonal relationships including a spirit of cooperation, open confrontation of conflicts, and the expression of ideas.
TEAM CREATIVITYTHE SOCIAL CONTEXT SEEMS TO PLAY A CRITICAL ROLE IN THE FOSTERING OF CREATIVITYAS OF LATE IT HAS BEEN ARGUED THAT ORGANIZATIONAL MECHANISMS THAT TRIGGER AND ENHANCE TEAM CREATIVITY ARE LIKELY TO BE MORE SUSTAINABLE WORK PLACES. YET, OUR UNDERSTANDING OF TEAM CREATIVITY IS IN ITS INFANCYTEAM CREATIVITY IS AN INTRIGUING AREA THAT REQUIRES FURTHER STUDY
MANAGING TEAM CREATIVITY*1. Protect the creative team the need to shield the team from the commentaries of others in the company, such that the creative process is allowed to emerge in its natural course. 2. Safeguard the artistic process the need to establish barriers around the product development such that time-to-market pressures and other time constrains do not disrupt the process. 3. Develop an inventive communication managing at the intersection of known and unknown, routine and none routine, art and commerce, means translating the creative language to the language of the company. * Adopted and modified from Bangle, 2001