Creativity Salford 2007

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2nd AHRC Workshop

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Creativity Salford 2007

  1. 1. FOSTERING CREATIVITY IN TEAMS: THE MANCHESTER BUSINESS SCHOOL EXPERIENCE Tudor Rickards 2 nd AHRC Workshop, Salford, May 4 th 2007
  2. 2. Creativity in teams: Two key questions <ul><li>Can creativity in work teams be supported effectively through structured interventions? </li></ul><ul><li>How can creativity of organisational groups be assessed? </li></ul>
  3. 3. Some background <ul><li>Theories of creativity </li></ul><ul><li>Definitional issues </li></ul><ul><li>Applied research </li></ul><ul><li>Pioneers, findings and conundrums </li></ul>
  4. 4. Theories of creativity <ul><li>Multiple theories from psychology, philosophy, information science … </li></ul><ul><li>Theories mirror broader conceptual fields The variety of domains partly explains the definitional conundrums </li></ul><ul><li>One way forward: treat theories in context (action domains). </li></ul>
  5. 5. More about definitions <ul><li>Rhodes suggests that definitions address aspects of four overlapping components: The person(s); The products; The processes; The (environmental) press. </li></ul><ul><li>Working definition: Processes generating new and valued outputs (But, new to whom?; valuable to whom?) </li></ul>
  6. 6. Applied research pioneers <ul><li>Torrance (Metrics) </li></ul><ul><li>Stein (Assessment of techniques) </li></ul><ul><li>Parnes/Osborn (Brainstorming; Creative Problem Solving Institute) </li></ul><ul><li>De Bono (Lateral thinking; Cognitive studies institute) </li></ul>
  7. 7. Applied research findings <ul><li>Psychological factors block creativity </li></ul><ul><li>Blocks can be weakened through appropriate structures (‘techniques’) </li></ul><ul><li>Creative individuals have some common characteristics across domains (ego strength; extended effort with flexibility; intrinsic motivation to create) </li></ul>
  8. 8. Stimulating creativity in teams <ul><li>MBS approach established over several decades </li></ul><ul><li>Applied within project teams exploring real business issues </li></ul><ul><li>Approach has developed Osborn’s and </li></ul><ul><li>De Bono’s methods in hundreds of projects </li></ul><ul><li>Approach found to be very robust across business areas of all kinds </li></ul>
  9. 9. Illustrating the MBS approach <ul><li>A team uses ‘Invitations’ to improve novelty and quality of its ideas </li></ul><ul><li>The team considers starting ideas for a topic </li></ul><ul><li>These are enriched with ‘reversals’ and ‘wouldn’t it be wonderful if..’ invitations. </li></ul><ul><li>Structures and supportive team leadership help develop positive attitudes and creative integration (‘Yes and…’) </li></ul>
  10. 10. Creative Climate <ul><li>Various studies suggest a supportive climate is associated with creativity in groups </li></ul><ul><li>Instrumentation pioneered by Ekvall and colleagues in the 1970s </li></ul><ul><li>More recent inventories by Amabile, Rickards, West </li></ul>
  11. 11. Climate and intrinsic motivation <ul><li>Amabile developed her climate measure (KEYS) in the 1980s-1990s </li></ul><ul><li>She also proposed a theory of intrinsic motivation. </li></ul><ul><li>A creative climate encourages intrinsic motivation of individuals. </li></ul><ul><li>This has implications for rewarding creativity by ‘non-transactional’ means </li></ul>
  12. 12. Tuckman’s stage model of team development <ul><li>Form </li></ul><ul><li>Storm </li></ul><ul><li>Norm </li></ul><ul><li>Perform </li></ul><ul><li>The model offers no way of explaining creativity in teams </li></ul>
  13. 13. MBS work as an extension to Tuckman’s stage model <ul><li>MBS model suggest that high creative teams behave differently to others in their development </li></ul><ul><li>Form (more supportive climate) </li></ul><ul><li>Storm (less damaging storm stage) </li></ul><ul><li>Perform (more creative performance) </li></ul>
  14. 14. The MBS Team Factor Inventory (TFI) <ul><li>TFI developed to explore factors influencing team climate </li></ul><ul><li>Seven factors identified and validated in multiple studies </li></ul><ul><li>TFI used to assist team development through creativity training. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Platform of Understanding: The 7 team Factors of TFI
  16. 16. Summary <ul><li>Build creativity into teams through enabling structures and leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Use assessment as a learning not labelling aid </li></ul><ul><li>Create processes, contexts, and opportunities for creative development, as well as products </li></ul>
  17. 17. To go more deeply <ul><li>Be a network activator </li></ul><ul><li>Search widely … chose wisely </li></ul><ul><li>Creativity and Innovation Management is a good journal for the reflective practitioner </li></ul><ul><li>http://leaderswedeserve.wordpress.com/ explores creative leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Creative leadership succeeds ‘by invitation not assertion’ </li></ul>

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