Innovation Blog: Be clear to employees about creativity

published 2-1-2013

Be clear to employees what creativity is

The challenge for creative leadership lies in identifying, recognizing and valuing creative behavior. The organization itself can not be more creative than the degree to which managers and employees use their creativity. The opportunity is to ignite the creativity of all to achieve the set goals.

Then it is crucial to shape the conditions under which creativity can emerge and focused on the goals of the department, team, business unit or organization.

That asks for vision and a sophisticated policy to encourage creativity, to harvest it and turn it into meaningful and effective innovations.

But it all starts with explaining to employees what creativity is and what is considered to be a creative contribution. Some people associate creativity only with the arts and artists.

So be as clear as possible what the desired creative behavior in the work setting is. If creativity means that employees have to come up with new ideas about improvement and innovation, communicate this and illustrate it with examples. If creativity means that we have to listen differently to customers, discovering their hidden needs, use our imagination to visualize future needs, then be explicit that you expect this behavior.

Be aware that a lot of employees have a self-image of not being creative. As a manager you have to change this thinking and show employees that we all possess creative abilities and that their work offers an abundance of opportunities to express and strengthen it.

With this kind of leadership you will awaken the creative giant within your employees!

© Jeff Gaspersz, January, 2013