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Creating the best context for creativity
After a course I followed given by MoTiv (http://www.motiv.tudelft.nl/) by Ton Meijknecht and Hans van Drongelen for IBM, I would like to share some concepts and reflexions on Creativity.

The creative class
The work of Richard Florida and his book 'The rise of the creative class' (note I haven't read it yet) aimed at demonstrating that a new class has emerged in today's society. "The creative class is a group of people that social scientist Dr. Richard Florida, a professor and head of the Prosperity Institute at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, believes are a key driving force for economic development of post-industrial cities in the USA." (See Wikipedia)
The people of the creative class have special demands against their work environment : soft control, more independence, personal growth and development, freedom to shape the content of their own work, control of their schedules (flexibility), expression of their identities through work, able to trade job security for own autonomy.
The creative class is also looking for another kind of lifestyle : individuality, self-statement, acceptance of difference, desire for rich multi-dimensional experience, pack every second - at work or leisure- full of creative stimuli and a morphing conception of time - (mixture of work and play).
The creative class asks questions about what really matters in life.

The thesis of Mr Florida is that the creative class is the main driver of economic growth.

Do I belong to the creative class ?
I have the feeling I belong to the creative class : I think I have the above characteristics.
Another argument that makes me think I'm a member of the creative class is that I feel the tension that would exist between members of the creative class and the corporations. A tension starts to emerge between large corporation and the creative class. Their motivations are not compatible anymore. However the corporations need the creative class for their innovations. The result is a war for talent and a lot of talent retention programmes. But it doesn't prevent that creative people step out of the companies and create a new startup or even make management buy-outs.
In one of my previous posts (Allergic to Superficiality ), I was criticized by some anonymous comment and today I understand why. The person who criticized me is certainly not someone of the Creative class. It's someone who is a Coporation's soldier and who has a lot of respect for the traditional way large companies can sometimes operate. He is attracted by the dark side of the organization's power game and has respect for people who are able to climb the matrix to the top by stepping on the other's dead bodies.

Who is creative ?
Everybody can be creative. Being creative requires however some conditions : you need some talent and this talent needs to be put in the right context. Talent has three different levels : skills, mastering and tolerance. We are used to identify our skills and define how well we master them (beginner, advanced, expert, master...).

How to be even more creative ? By knowing why.
In addition to skills and mastering, tolerance is required for the most creative ones.
Firstly, If you are not able to make use of the diversity of our world by being more tolerant, you will be less creative.
Secondly, tolerance also means compassion and the possibility to solve problems for others.
This tolerance aspect also touches the deepest motivations of our creativity. Why do we want to be creative ? What drives us to create solutions ? Why did Einstein want to find out new rules like the relativity rule ?

Creativity and Spirituality
It seems that a fundamental drive (some beliefs, some spirituality) is a necessary condition for superior creativity and innovation, meaning that you will be most creative if you align your entrepreneurship with your own spirituality.
I can link this to one of my previous posts around Happiness defined by Axel Khan : All creatures on this earth will be happy if they can express their true nature. "Connais-toi toi mÍme"... You can only be a superior creator in the fields that match your true nature.

Being creative, just as being happy requires freedom. Freedom allows to move in order to be the right man at the right place at the right moment. This is why creative people want to be independent and travel the world : they don't want to be blocked in their vision of how they can improve what matters to them. They don't want to miss the chance to maximize the impact of their creativity.

jfdeclercq Management Philosophie

Last edited on Thursday, June 12, 2008 at 11:47:42 am.