Building engagement in your organization
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
e Commonwealth Club
March 23, 2011...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
I’m a designer and strategist. Designing delightful experiences makes me
tic...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Every individual
has the right and
responsibility to do work
that is interes...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
...and the us/them divide
is artificial and damaging
to the human spirit.
Co...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
How did he get there?
possibilities create! opportunities become! responsibi...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
But it’s not isolated.
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
What if...
possibilities opportunities responsibilities dependenciescreate! ...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
What if it looked
like this?
become!
responsibilities
dependencies
lead to!
...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
LOBOTOMIES!
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Meanwhile...
Enter this book
and this article.
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
a cultural landscape
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
WHAT CREATES IT?!
WHAT FEEDS IT?!
WHAT SUPPORTS IT?!
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
e blueprint is a guide...
WHAT CREATES IT?!
WHAT FEEDS IT?!
WHAT SUPPORTS IT?!
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
e blueprint is a guide...
Expertise!
Motivation!
Challenge!
Freedom!
Resources!
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Workgroup features!
Su...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
WHAT CREATES IT?!
Expertise!
Motivation!
 Knowledge
• tactical
• procedural...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
In Brown Bags the team gathers to get exposed to different ideas and
discuss...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
WHAT FEEDS IT?!
Challenge!
Freedom! Resources!
  Ability to define “how”:
s...
Open design sessions are one-hour sessions where a project team opens up
participation to others. During the hour the team...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
WHAT SUPPORTS IT?!
Workgroup features!
  Mutual support
  Diverse perspect...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
At the monthly all-hand meeting, we have 5-minute sessions where
someone can...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
WHAT SUPPORTS IT?!
Leadership support!
  Mandate information-sharing
  Imp...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Why wait for Leadership support?
DIY culture change at a large
non-profit
WH...
As an assessment tool…
What are we already doing to
foster a creative culture?
What are we missing?
Think about how your o...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Putting it to work
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
2	
  
what is one thing you do that you want to stop
doing, but that others ...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
~ Heraclitus
“! “!A wonderful harmony is
created when we join
together the s...
What is one thing you do that you want to
stop doing, but that others depend on you for?
Blueprint for a Creative Culture ...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
4	
   Now share your great idea with the person sitting next to you.
3 minut...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Your toolkit:
A model for awareness, so you
know when it’s time to
envision ...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Talk to 2 new people about your work.
Actively listen for and write down pos...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
a future vision...	
  
Companies are made
of people who are open,
inspired a...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Each and every one of us
uses our creative mojo in work
that is interesting,...
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
LOBOTOMIES!
and best of all...	
  
Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
Shout-outs to...
 Dr. Teresa Amabile for her catalyzing article
 HBR for p...
opportunities
responsibilities
dependencies
create!
become!
lead to!
possibilitiesthat!
inspire!
Blueprint for a Creative Culture [Commonwealth Club of SF, Mar 2011]
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Blueprint for a Creative Culture [Commonwealth Club of SF, Mar 2011]

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This talk was held at the Commonwealth Club of SF on March 23, 2011. It challenges the notion that company cultures must be dry, static, inhuman and impersonal to be professional. The Creative Culture Blueprint shows what elements create, feed and support a creative culture. Also included are examples of activities that can be used to unlock static cultures to be more creative.

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Blueprint for a Creative Culture [Commonwealth Club of SF, Mar 2011]

  1. 1. Building engagement in your organization Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 e Commonwealth Club March 23, 2011 #creativecultureblueprint Kate Rutter, Adaptive Path www.intelleto.com | www.adaptivepath.com twitter : @katerutter | @adaptivepath
  2. 2. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 I’m a designer and strategist. Designing delightful experiences makes me tick. Making things visual and visible makes my heart sing. Over the past few years I’ve been exploring what makes creative cultures tick, with a goal of ensuring that everyone can bring their most inspired self to work each and every day. Adaptive Path is a User Experience strategy and design consultancy. Our mission is to help companies make products and services that deliver great experiences that improve people’s lives. Adaptive Path Hi, I’m Kate.
  3. 3. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
  4. 4. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 Every individual has the right and responsibility to do work that is interesting, fun & meaningful. Every company has the responsibility to create a space where people can do their best work openly and effectively. I believe...  
  5. 5. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 ...and the us/them divide is artificial and damaging to the human spirit. Companies are made of people. And we are those people. And I believe...  
  6. 6. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 How did he get there? possibilities create! opportunities become! responsibilities dependencieslead to! LOBOTOMIES! spirals into!
  7. 7. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 But it’s not isolated.
  8. 8. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 What if... possibilities opportunities responsibilities dependenciescreate! become! lead to!
  9. 9. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 What if it looked like this? become! responsibilities dependencies lead to! possibilitiesthat! inspire! opportunities create!
  10. 10. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 LOBOTOMIES!
  11. 11. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 Meanwhile...
  12. 12. Enter this book and this article. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
  13. 13. a cultural landscape Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
  14. 14. WHAT CREATES IT?! WHAT FEEDS IT?! WHAT SUPPORTS IT?! Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 e blueprint is a guide for a creative culture.
  15. 15. WHAT CREATES IT?! WHAT FEEDS IT?! WHAT SUPPORTS IT?! Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 e blueprint is a guide for a creative culture.
  16. 16. Expertise! Motivation! Challenge! Freedom! Resources! Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 Workgroup features! Supervisory encouragement! Leadership support! Creative thinking skills! e blueprint is a guide for a creative culture.
  17. 17. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 WHAT CREATES IT?! Expertise! Motivation!  Knowledge • tactical • procedural • intellectual  Acquired by • formal education, • professional experience • interactions with colleagues & peers  Intellectual space for problem-solving and solution-finding  Ability to look across intellectual spaces for ideas  Capacity to combine ideas in new ways  Ability to depart from the status quo  Perseverance  Intrinsic • passion • interest • challenge  Extrinsic • carrot &stick Creative thinking skills! Brown Bags
  18. 18. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 In Brown Bags the team gathers to get exposed to different ideas and discusses topics related to our work. Tuesdays from 12-1 is set aside, but if there is a lot going on, Brown Bags can happen more often. Anyone can host a Brown Bag, and they often feature special guests. We've heard from futurists, software developers, people doing cool research, and seen demos of digital or design tools. If there’s not a guest, we’ve watched TED talks. Internal brown bags have included staff portfolio sharing, focused discussions of internal projects and ad-hoc working sessions on a wide variety of topics. WHAT CREATES IT?! Brown Bags  
  19. 19. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 WHAT FEEDS IT?! Challenge! Freedom! Resources!   Ability to define “how”: sense of ownership, autonomy   Decide the best fit of the approach & expertise   Clearly defined goals that don’t shift  Space: a place to focus, a place to explore, tools  Culture: open & honest  Money: legitimate, fair and an appropriate amount  Time: realistic and real deadlines, time for exploration  Match people with work  Know people: interests, skills, expertise Open Design Sessions
  20. 20. Open design sessions are one-hour sessions where a project team opens up participation to others. During the hour the team has access to fresh perspectives, ideas and experiences to help think through a problem and give feedback on the work. This open working style encourages the free sharing of ideas and approaches and serves as cross-project pollination. Working together enables people who don’t frequently work together to collaborate. Getting exposure to each other’s interests, skills and expertise smoothes the path for people working together in the future, and knits the culture together through sharing ideas. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 WHAT FEEDS IT?! Open Design Sessions
  21. 21. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 WHAT SUPPORTS IT?! Workgroup features!   Mutual support   Diverse perspectives   Willingness to help in difficult times   Shared excitement Supervisory encouragement!  Communicate that the work matters  Meet ideas with an open mind  Banish negative bias  Guard against a culture of fear  Celebrate failure  Discuss ideas promptly  Reward participation in a timely manner  Recognize the creative work5-minute Madness
  22. 22. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 At the monthly all-hand meeting, we have 5-minute sessions where someone can make a statement that they don’t know is true, or that they think may not be true. Then the group discusses it for 5 minutes (time-enforced.) This helps us say things that we’re not sure of, encourages people to speak up about things that feel unformed, keeps us uncomfortable, and keeps us open to being wrong in service to sharing ideas. This in turn helps us keep our creative thinking skills honed because it encourages departing from the status quo. It reinforces the importance of diverse perspectives in our workgroups. And it supports open communication, meeting ideas with an open mind and taking risks. WHAT SUPPORTS IT?! 5-minute Madness
  23. 23. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 WHAT SUPPORTS IT?! Leadership support!   Mandate information-sharing   Implement creative principles   Promote open & clear communication   Ensure political problems don’t fester   Encourage sharing outside the organization Guerilla Collaboration
  24. 24. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 Why wait for Leadership support? DIY culture change at a large non-profit WHAT SUPPORTS IT?! Guerilla Collaboration Freedom!   Ability to define “how”: sense of ownership, autonomy Resources!   Space: a place to focus, a place to explore, tools   Diverse perspectives   Willingness to help in difficult times   Shared excitement Workgroup features!   Meet ideas with an open mind Supervisory encouragement! Leadership support!   Mandate information-sharing   Implement creative principles   Promote open & clear communication Expertise!   Knowledge from interactions with colleagues   Intellectual space for problem- solving and solution-finding Motivation!   Intrinsic • passion • interest • challenge   Ability to depart from the status quo   Perseverance Creative thinking skills!
  25. 25. As an assessment tool… What are we already doing to foster a creative culture? What are we missing? Think about how your organization functions…what areas of the creative blueprint are already in play? ! What specific elements are present? ! What activities promote or reinforce these elements? ! What elements are not yet part of your organizational behavior? ! What kind of activities, processes or behaviors could help fill the gaps? As an inspiration tool… How can we build more creative thinking into our culture? What could that look like? What areas & elements of the creative blueprint are most interesting to you? ! What are 2-3 ideas for activities that could introduce the element? ! How could these activities be introduced? ! What are some ways to observe the impact? Putting the blueprint to work Creative / (krē-āˈtĭv) / –adjective Characterized by originality and expressiveness; imaginative. Culture / (kŭlˈchər) / –noun The predominating attitudes and behavior that characterize the functioning of a group or organization. Blueprint / (blo͞oˈprĭnt) / –noun A detailed plan of action. A model or prototype. Sample activities include : casual interactions ! processes ! meetings ! physical space ! tools ! policies ! behaviors ! routines ! workshops ! retreats ! celebrations ? !? Creative thinking is the fuel that powers new ideas, exploration, invention and progress in the world. Staying fresh and engaged is crucial to making this happen. But it takes a team approach to create and foster a culture that thrives on creativity. How does workplace culture support creative thinking? What activities do people and organizations do to foster curiosity, collective engagement and making ideas happen? This creative culture blueprint is a way to assess your culture, to understand why some activities promote inventive thinking (and why some kill it), and to envision & build a culture where creativity is appropriate, useful and sustaining. What makes a creative culture? Digital versions of the blueprint are available for download at : http://www.adaptivepath.com/ideas/essays/archives/001192.php For assessment & inspiration Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
  26. 26. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 Putting it to work
  27. 27. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 2   what is one thing you do that you want to stop doing, but that others depend on you for? 1   1   something you are passionate about.2   2   on the card, write down... 1 minute
  28. 28. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 ~ Heraclitus “! “!A wonderful harmony is created when we join together the seemingly unconnected.
  29. 29. What is one thing you do that you want to stop doing, but that others depend on you for? Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 1   Something you are passionate about.2   2   1   2   3   3   What is one idea for how you can satisfy both? on the card, write down... 2 minutes
  30. 30. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 4   Now share your great idea with the person sitting next to you. 3 minutes
  31. 31. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 Your toolkit: A model for awareness, so you know when it’s time to envision new possibilities. A blueprint for how to create, feed and support a creative culture. A personal starting point to put into practice.
  32. 32. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 Talk to 2 new people about your work. Actively listen for and write down possibilities. your challenge   Pilot a 5-minute madness one time. See where it takes you. Host a Brown Bag or a collaborative problem-solving session. Bring new ideas into your environment.
  33. 33. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 a future vision...   Companies are made of people who are open, inspired and who support each other in envisioning and building positive futures. We claim our own power, and use it. Every company is a place where we can do our best work openly and effectively.
  34. 34. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 Each and every one of us uses our creative mojo in work that is interesting, fun & meaningful. a future vision...  
  35. 35. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011
  36. 36. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 LOBOTOMIES! and best of all...  
  37. 37. Blueprint for a Creative Culture | March 2011 Shout-outs to...  Dr. Teresa Amabile for her catalyzing article  HBR for publishing awesome stuff  Leah Buley for sharing a few of her sketches  the folks at Adaptive Path for the everyday activities that create, feed and support a creative environment!   you!   thanks!   Kate Rutter, Adaptive Path http://www.intelleto.com twitter : @katerutter
  38. 38. opportunities responsibilities dependencies create! become! lead to! possibilitiesthat! inspire!
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