Spring Forward by Thinking Different
Are you left-brained or right-brained? Are you creative or analytical? As leaders, it is important to bring the best of both minds together to spur innovation and achieve our goals.
We have all heard the saying, “Paralysis by analysis…” As a leader, your ability to fuel creativity within yourself and your team, is an essential capability to being both strategic and innovative. How one balances the science of analysis and the art of creativity is key to your team’s ability turn a strategic vision into actionable tactics.
In order to spur creative thinking, studies have shown that in order to make the greatest impact, leaders must remove barriers block an open and creative environment. By doing so, this will allow your team to stay focused on transforming ideas into the right results. Consider the following:
- Gather empowered “brainy” talent. The first priority of leadership is to engage the right people, at the right times. The responsibility of a leader is to bring the right creative and analytically talented people together to analyze situations, create solutions, develop the best course of action and inspire innovation. It is vital to empower your team. A well-functioning team has more collective information than an individual that can provide more diverse insight into a recommendation, ultimately leading to improved creative outcomes.
- Stay laser-focused on your desired outcomes.By doing so, leaders are able to maximize creative team decision-making processes. Keep the challenge front and center to keep on the right path to developing solutions. It is helpful to keep your working team size as small as possible, but relative to the size of the challenge. The best nourishment for the creative process is for an individual to see one’s ideas successfully shape and improve results.
- Lead, guide and support. As a leader, your job is to both lead by example and chart a course for your team to follow. An analytical mind can help keep a business organized and inline by using objective information, including data, trend analysis, surveys and industry benchmarks. Guiding a team to success includes trusting them and being receptive to their ideas.
- Embrace the certainty of failure. The statement “..if you first don’t succeed, try, try, again…” is a testament to resiliency after failure, and resounding success stories. Fear of failure rises with the scale of a business. Not only do organizations become more conservative as they grow, but fear also makes managers more likely to deny that failure has happened and more eager to erase all memory of it. Any business that experiments vigorously will experience failure—which, when it happens, should be mined to improve creative problem solving, team learning, and organizational performance.
As you start your spring cleaning, consider ways you will fill your mind with creativity and renewal throughout the year ahead!
“Unleashing Creativity in the Workplace: Going beyond the operation manual,” Regent University
Creativity and the Role of the Leader, Harvard Business Review.