Episode 25: Retaining Creativity As Your Team GrowsJun 14, 2022
Now that we are a bigger team we’ve become more like “silos”. I miss the creative thinking that came naturally to a smaller, adaptable team. What can I do to hold on to that creative thinking?
There is something beautiful and wonderful about the creativity and innovation that necessarily emerges in the early growth stages of an organization if the vision is going to survive. As organizations grow they necessarily need to organize some of that chaos of those innovative approaches that are actually working to sustain growth.
So, can we have both structure and creative thinking? I vote yes! I’m an idealist and I always think there is a way – I will almost always answer yes to a “both / and” kind of question like what you are asking.
Now, I don’t think it will happen naturally. I am not that much of an optimist. You need to be clear on what you want to take with you into the next season of growth and what you are willing to leave behind. Then, you need specific strategies you can experiment with to retain creativity.
Here’s a few to try...
Cross Functional Teams
A cross section of the “silos” in your organization that come together for a specific initiative or to address a challenge that the whole organization is facing. Others start seeing the bigger picture and can share the load of growth of the whole, not just their area.
A “Brain Trust”
Put smart, passionate people in a room together, charge them with identifying and solving problems, and encourage them to honestly share ideas, opinions and criticisms – of the idea and not people! Facilitate it well and hold to ground rules so it doesn’t get off track.
It’s a quaker practice of convening a group of people to join you in seeking Holy Spirit guidance and engaging communal wisdom in a specific situation. The goal is for the participants to utilize listening, questions and discernment to draw out the inner wisdom you already possess but may not currently be aware of.
Evaluate the experiment to see what worked and what didn’t. Be okay with failure. Challenge your failures so you don’t end up with a culture of “we tried that already and it didn’t work.” Keep experimenting with new things to find what works right for your team’s creativity.
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