Office culture is becoming an important competitive advantage. As companies jockey to attract the best and the brightest, their calling card is their reputation. Job seekers are doing their homework. They’re meeting with present and past employees and learning about the culture within. Does your office culture reflect the company’s commitment to creativity and innovation sought after by the best and the brightest?
CW asked Katherine Danks, president and founder of Creative Business Culture, to offer some advice on how companies can incorporate creativity and innovative thinking into their culture, allowing them to be more cohesive, visionary, and open to exploring new possibilities.
CW: What makes an organizational culture creative?
Katherine Danks: Building a company culture that encourages creativity and innovation is like a coach developing a sports team to attain a specific goal. The coach needs players with unique strengths and attributes. The organizational structure of a company, like a sports team, should encourage and develop each employee’s unique attributes, so they can play their best game.
Companies can build a “model behavior” architecture that encourages innovation and creativity. They can encourage staff to learn from failure, model mindful communication and motivate those around them by giving their employees both autonomy and responsibility for their actions.
CW: What can leaders do to instill creativity and ensure that it is promoted?
KD: By encouraging failure, and learning from it, employees will develop stronger self-confidence, which helps them to take on the risk involved in innovation. Taking risks can be exhilarating—it proves that you have courage. It’s like being reluctant to go to the gym—once you’ve done it, you feel great for overcoming your initial sense of unwillingness to go and now have the motivation to encourage others to take risks too....
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