Monday, November 07, 2005

Creativity is overrated

For a long time now we've been told that to be "creative" is cool. Creative folks are the people who come up with the snappy patter, the cool mantras, interesting user interfaces, best new ideas. Well, I guess that's all true, as far as it goes. My question is: So what?

I don't want a really well articulated idea on paper. I want a new product or service or feature. Being creative and generating a lot of ideas is almost pointless if those ideas merely fall by the wayside.

Instead of celebrating the folks who generate ideas, we should celebrate the people who can take a raw idea and evolve it and incubate it through a system or methodology until it's ready to be used, consumed or implemented by a customer. That's when the idea has real value.

Take a look at any marcom or advertising firm. Most of them will have one or two "visionaries" who generate the next big thing. They come up with the ideas. After that, there are marketing people, marcom people, messaging people, production people, operations people and others who are charged with making the vision a reality. In other words, there's probably a 1:10 relationship between the folks who simply create the ideas and those it takes to fully flesh out and package the idea in a way that others can use it. So, it seems to me that the "hard work" of creativity (and by analogy innovation) is in the methodology and process.

Most people can be creative, if by creative we mean coming up with an interesting new idea or vision. But in most "creative" firms there are one or two primary creative people backed by many "operations" and "production" people who make the idea workable. These are the people we should celebrate. Creativity is interesting but not particularly useful by itself, since without the means of production most ideas don't become valuable goods and services.

Let's stop focusing on the "creative people" and start focusing on the innovation process.
AddThis Social Bookmark Button
posted by Jeffrey Phillips at 10:08 AM

41 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10:20 AM  
Anonymous Charlie said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:19 PM  
Anonymous David Jeggle said...

I share your opinion partly - you need people who drive the process and convert ideas into products or services - however: at first you need the good ideas - and that is the challenge - especially in corporate world. People think in the way they have though for the last decade and are not encouraged "to think out of the box" or "to think the forbidden" - and that is why we do need creativity in every company - however mixed with the right people who drive the process.

In my last training, on participant made a good statement:

If you do what you always did,
you'll get what you always got!

12:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Most are creative? I think not. If by "creative", you mean able to identify something new, then yes, most people can create something new via combining existing products (something we, here at the US Patent & Trademark Office, refer to as "obvious"). However, people who conceive of something valuable and "novel" are rare, which is my definition of the word creative.

8:22 AM  
Anonymous Buy Generic Viagra said...

Innovation and idea management really aren't that important - all this discussion is only lip service.
That's true.......
Creativity must be overrated as compared to experience.......

11:28 PM  
Anonymous Negocio rentable said...

hello, this day I've been searching for information on various issues, this I found very good and I would like to congratulate you for your work.
Inversiones en petroleo

9:21 AM  
Anonymous how to stay erect said...

i agree with you. i had similiar problem and i used what you ave taught and it worked like magic

11:41 PM  
Anonymous wisata kuliner bandung said...

i agree with you. i had similiar problem and i used what you ave taught and it worked like magic

11:41 PM  
Anonymous belajar internet marketing said...

i agree with you. i had similiar problem and i used what you ave taught and it worked like magic

11:42 PM  
Anonymous delayed orgasm said...

i agree with you. i had similiar problem and i used what you ave taught and it worked like magic

11:42 PM  
Anonymous delaying ejaculation said...

i agree with you. i had similiar problem and i used what you ave taught and it worked like magic

11:42 PM  
Anonymous how to last longer in bed said...

i agree with you. i had similiar problem and i used what you ave taught and it worked like magic

11:42 PM  
Anonymous how to avoid premature ejaculation said...

i agree with you. i had similiar problem and i used what you ave taught and it worked like magic

11:42 PM  
Anonymous how to prevent premature ejaculation said...

i agree with you. i had similiar problem and i used what you ave taught and it worked like magic

11:43 PM  
Anonymous how to prolong ejaculation said...

i agree with you. i had similiar problem and i used what you ave taught and it worked like magic

11:43 PM  
Anonymous Invertir en oro said...

Used. Case is a bit worn but contents in good condition.

9:54 AM  
Anonymous konsultan seo said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:40 AM  
Anonymous asuransi pendidikan said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:40 AM  
Anonymous action coach said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:41 AM  
Anonymous jadi artis said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:41 AM  
Anonymous jadi artis said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:41 AM  
Anonymous cara dapat duit said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:42 AM  
Anonymous kerja sama investasi said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:42 AM  
Anonymous coach indonesia said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:43 AM  
Anonymous jaja said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:43 AM  
Anonymous jajanan bandung said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:44 AM  
Anonymous coklat valentine said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:44 AM  
Anonymous Panduan SEO said...

I have the same perspective as you. Creativity is nice, but it is only a start. Most organizations need innovators, who can drive ideas to value generation.

2:44 AM  
Anonymous cholesterol lower diet said...

I can't cease reading this.It truly is so nice, so full of information that i simply didn't know.I'm fortunate to view that guests are in actual fact speaking about this problem in this type of a clever strategy, displaying us all many different. You are one nice blogger. Please keep it up. I cannot wait to go through what’s next.

5:32 PM  
Anonymous konsultan perusahaan said...

I think people fear idea management and innovation because there's a significant number of ideas that simply won't plan out.......Nice statement.....keep posting

10:18 AM  
Anonymous belajar internet marketing said...

this day I've been searching for information on various issues, this I found very good and I would like to congratulate you for your work.

10:19 AM  
Anonymous parcel lebaran said...

I think that this post is one of the best that i have read in my life, congrats you did a great job,.

10:19 AM  
Anonymous delayed orgasm said...

the difference between the content spammers and most corporate innovators is that the smaller

10:25 AM  
Anonymous how to avoid premature ejaculation said...

I'm writing to you because I just came across a business that I think has great potential. It lets you save money on almost everything. Make money from almost everything,

10:25 AM  
Anonymous konsultan seo said...

If growth is important to a firm, and if growth is dependent on offering existing products and services to new customers

10:25 AM  
Anonymous tabungan pendidikan said...

innovation is very natural and happens in the "real world" as new plants and animals colonize new ecological niches.

10:25 AM  
Anonymous mengecilkan perut said...

I wonder how you got so good. This is really a fascinating blog, lots of stuff that I can get into. One thing I just want to say is that your Blog is so perfect

10:26 AM  
Anonymous how to teach dogs tricks said...

We generally think most specifically about the risk associated with a new product introduction

10:26 AM  
Anonymous easy way to get pregnant said...

I would be aware that as somebody who really doesn’t comment to blogs a lot (in actual fact, this may be my first put up), I don’t think the time period “lurker” is very flattering to a non-posting reader.

10:26 AM  
Anonymous christinetjan said...

i think all your postings are very great, thank you very much for your sharing

6:23 AM  
Anonymous cure hemorrhoids naturally said...

I look forward to another article. It would be nice to have, too.

2:53 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home