What do Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson, Sammy Sosa and Mickey Mantle have in common? As you likely guessed, they were all horrible baseball players. Yup – some of the most inept batters you’ll find in baseball history. Complete and utter losers, really. At least that’s the impression one might get when you see their names included among the batters with the most strikeouts. (Reggie Jackson holds the dubious honor as the #1 strikeout batter in history, having struck out 2,597 times at bat.) Of course, you know the punch line. They were also some of the top hitters to grace the game.
Creativity, Inc: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration, is one of my top business book recommendations of the year so far. (Check it out at Shop at Amazon.ca!) It’s a rollicking trip through the inner workings of Pixar Studios, including the role Steve Jobs played in shaping the company, how the company uses its Brain Trust to drive innovation, and its “plussing” approach to building a more creative, not to mention, fun culture. From Toy Story to Up, the lessons learned from the making of each and every Pixar animated film are as insightful as they are entertaining.
An interesting infographic summarizes five steps into being more creative and some specific techniques for boosting creativity at work.
Researchers at Harvard University found that employees are far more inclined to speak up and offer solutions when organizations launch information campaigns aimed at improving processes. Making it easy for employees to communicate ideas also helps improve the number of suggestions brought forth. The CEO of Rosenbluth International made it easy by creating a special 800 number voice-mail suggestion box where employees could submit ideas, concerns or praise directly to him. A CEO of Cinergy held regular “Listening Meetings” to hear employees’ concerns and ideas without interference.
I was the closing keynote speaker at an event recently, and, as I typically do, I sat in on the presentations prior to mine.
When I was a kid, I used to get Guy Lafleur and Gordie Howe to come and play street hockey with my team. I was, of course, roundly criticized for bringing in outside ringers.
Southwest Airlines has a “Walk-a-Mile” program where employees
can sign up to work a day in a totally different department.
Many organizations have such programs, and find tremendous value
Not only do swap days help employees develop new skills and
clarify different career …
I just finished reading Tina Fey’s hilarious autobiography “Bossypants,” in which she includes a sidebar talking about her life lessons she learned from doing theater improv.