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this is a presentation on creativity I give to international students in our leadership development series


  1. 1. Creativity What is it, who has it and why and how to get it. Creativity!
  2. 2. <ul><li>Visual Thinking with Kermit the frog </li></ul>Creativity! Is Kermit “creative”? What is “creativity”?
  3. 3. <ul><li>Definition of CREATIVITY </li></ul>Creativity! Visuwords definition adjective involving the use of the imagination or original ideas in order to create something. Oxford English Dictionary other related words for creativity : creativeness, formativeness, innovation, inventiveness, originality, productivity, craftsmanship, authorship, creatorship &quot; Being creative is seeing the same thing as everybody else but thinking of something different&quot;
  4. 4. <ul><li>Aspects of creativity </li></ul>Creativity! 1. The creative process: mechanisms, phases 2. The creative person: traits, characteristics 3. The creative product: practical application
  5. 5. <ul><li>The creative process </li></ul>Creativity! Divergent thinking is the intellectual ability to think of many original, diverse, and elaborate ideas. Convergent thinking : the intellectual ability to logically evaluate, critique and choose the best idea from a selection of ideas.
  6. 6. <ul><li>Creative Problem Solving (CPS) </li></ul>Creativity! <ul><li>Mess-finding </li></ul><ul><li>Fact-finding </li></ul><ul><li>Problem-finding </li></ul><ul><li>Idea-finding </li></ul><ul><li>Solution-finding </li></ul><ul><li>Action-finding </li></ul>Both divergent and convergent…a complementing cycle of diverge-converge-diverge-converge…
  7. 7. <ul><li>Where is creativity? </li></ul>Creativity! <ul><li>Domain – symbols, rules and procedures in shared knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>(e.g. mathematics, literature) </li></ul><ul><li>2. Field – the “gatekeepers” of the domain (e.g. scientists, critics, historians) </li></ul><ul><li>3. Person – more on this later… </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>Where is creativity? </li></ul>Creativity! Creativity occurs when a person , using the symbols of a given domain , has a new idea or sees a new pattern and it is selected by the field for inclusion in the relevant domain…to change or create a new domain. - Csikszentmihalyi, Mihaly. Creativity: Flow and the Psychology of Discovery and Invention
  9. 9. <ul><li>Who is creative? </li></ul>Creativity! 32 traits of creative people… Are you creative? Name some creative people – what do they have in common? Who is not creative? Why?
  10. 10. Creativity! Dr. Frank Williams’ Exercise in Divergent Thinking FL: Fluency – the number of ideas FX: Flexibility – a variety of viewpoints; thinking in different ways O: Originality – uniqueness E: Elaboration – taking the idea as far as it can go
  11. 11. Creativity! Why is creativity important? <ul><li>Daniel Pink, A Whole New Mind (2006) </li></ul><ul><li>“ Conceptual Age”: creator, empathizer </li></ul><ul><li>3 A’s: Abundance, Asia, Automation </li></ul><ul><li>High concept, high touch </li></ul>… a need for inventive, flexible, spontaneous people! <ul><li>Richard Florida, Rise of the Creative Class (2002) </li></ul><ul><li>the “creative class”: scientists, engineers, artists, musicians, designers </li></ul><ul><li>the key to economic development in 21 st century </li></ul><ul><li>its share of the workforce is double it was in 1980 </li></ul><ul><li>3 T’s: Technology, Talent and Tolerance = economic growth </li></ul>
  12. 12. How can I become more creative? You are already… pursuing something you love, curious about the world, focusing on improving your skills, giving yourself time for reflection…right? Creativity! <ul><li>Problem-finding </li></ul><ul><li>Express what moves you </li></ul><ul><li>Look at problems from many viewpoints </li></ul><ul><li>Find many solutions to many problems (be indecisive!) </li></ul><ul><li>Implement a solution with the freedom to change </li></ul>
  13. 13. Creativity! How?... Brainstorming (CPS model) Mind-mapping Role-playing (theatre) Teamwork Journaling (recording text and image) Lateral thinking Most have difficulty generating ideas! <ul><li>Divergent thinking </li></ul><ul><li>Produce as many ideas as possible </li></ul><ul><li>Produce different, unlikely ideas </li></ul>How can I become more creative?
  14. 14. Creativity! Creativity and the cross-cultural experience Refer to “32 traits”…how many can be a result of the cross-cultural experience? Think about the 3 T’s… Adaptable, tolerant of ambiguity, observant, perceive world differently, flexible, intuitive, self-actualizing, self-knowledgeable, curious, independent… Your cross-cultural experience makes you more creative! How is creativity defined, celebrated, or discouraged in your culture?
  15. 15. Creativity! An exercise in creativity…. <ul><li>Having trouble getting started? Here’s some ideas… </li></ul><ul><li>sketch drawings or symbols of things you did as a child that were creative </li></ul><ul><li>scribble over your whole page then draw over top (get rid of the “blank” page dilemma!) </li></ul><ul><li>combine an animal and a fruit </li></ul><ul><li>illustrate a sound or feeling (e.g. “breezy”, “voices”) </li></ul>
  16. 16. Further reading… Csikszentmihalyi, Mihaly. Creativity: Flow and the Psychology of Discovery and Invention. 1996. Harper Collins. Pink, Daniel. A Whole New Mind: Moving from the Information Age to the Conceptual Age . 2006. Riverhead Publishing. Florida, Richard. Rise of the Creative Class…and how it’s transforming work, leisure, community and everyday life. 2002. Basic Books. Florida, R. and Gates, G. “Technology and Tolerance: the Importance of Diversity to High-technology Growth” . Brookings Institution, Center on Urban & Metropolitan Policy Survey Series, 2001. Hanna, J. “Getting Down to the Business of Creativity” . HBS Working Knowledge, May 14, 2008. Parks, Sharon Daloz. “What Artists Know About Leadership” HBS Working Knowledge , Nov. 7, 2005.