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Keeping Your Creative Culture Alive

Posted by: Rod Kurtz on November 25, 2008

As your business grows, it becomes important to ensure that what started as a creative enterprise doesn’t become stagnant and resistant to change. Here are some ways to keep your business open to new opportunities and change, especially in a tough business environment:

• Encourage informal meetings and conversations where ideas are shared anywhere and anytime. Often ideas with the greatest potential don’t emerge in formal business meetings—they arise out of interactions we have with colleagues, clients, and throughout our experiences in and out of work.

• Recognize nice tries even if they fail. As many successful innovative businesses have found, you can succeed more rapidly by failing, learning from your mistakes, revising, and reinventing.

• Question tradition. Encourage people to ask, "Why have we always done it that way?" "What if…" and "Is there another approach or answer?"

• Invite people from outside your organization—such as suppliers, client organizations, and trade groups—to visit your company, and go visit others. Bring in what you observe or find interesting, even if it’s from an entirely different industry. What could be adapted to your business?

Lisa Gundry, PhD
Professor of Management
Director, Center for Creativity and Innovation
DePaul University

Reader Comments

M. Krohn

November 27, 2008 10:28 AM

Thank you for the insights. Too bad the suits in the education field do not employ these basic tenets. If they did, perhaps they could keep the good teachers and get rid of the bad.
Just a thought from a retired/forced out/disgusted teacher.

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