Creativity at work?
Is there really room for creativity in the workplace? I don’t mean art in the workplace…
…though I think that would make an interesting study.
I mean creative thinking. Whilst that term probably needs some definition I am going to leave that difficult task for another time and assume we share a general understanding of it.
In large companies especially, creativity is needed (W.Edwards Deming said “it is necessary to innovate”) and often it is verbally encouraged. But then, at the same time, any behaviour that might approach the creative also tends to be stifled.
One way of stifling something is to claim to be managing it. I note that Talent Management is a euphemism for the squandering of talent and Performance Management guarantees that the performance of any organisation will be sub-optimised.
It is almost as if the more that an idea gets talked about the less it is likely to be experienced. For example, we hear so much about “communities” (the HR community, the Learning & Development community, the artistic community, the gay community, the local community, etc) precisely at a time when our experience of community is virtually non-existent. It must be a virtual community!
Recently, a friend was telling me how in their workplace the job purpose of the Quality Manager seemed to be to prevent quality.