Harvard Business Essentials define creativity as “a process of developing and expressing novel ideas for solving problems or satisfying needs”. Creativity in an organization is founded on three basic building blocks. These are expertise, creative thinking skills and motivation.
Considering this and other characteristics of creative teams, one realizes that managing creativity within a business context can be a daunting task. This paper seeks to identify the challenges associated with creative careers and how they can be managed within a business context.
The film industry can be a challenging industry which calls for creativity and innovation in order to stay afloat. Specifically, the animation industry calls for creativity in concept and technology all together. While viewers expect the industry to come up with creative animation films, the owners of the industries need to ensure that profitability is given an upper hand.
This means that being a manager within film industry can be a challenging task. The manager has to ensure that he promotes the creative processes with other non creative tasks which would together work towards achievement of company objectives.
In their analysis of creativity management, Seidel and Rosemann outline a myriad of challenges associated with creativity management. To begin with, managing of creative risks is one of the greatest challenges that one expecting a career that requires creativity has to be ready to meet.
As identified earlier, creativity entails coming up with novel ideas. Such processes tend to have great variations of possible outcomes. The risks involve losing process, failure to come up with an appropriate solution or coming up with poor quality product and also opposition from external environment which could lead to dissatisfaction or lawsuits.
In the film industry, it is important that a company comes up with entertaining movies that would lead to great sales. In the animation industry, it is important that developers come up with films that reflect creativity in terms of plot and creation.
Failure to establish this would lead to problems within the market and hence lead to business loses. However, coming up with such like creative ideas calls for risk anticipation and management. In the quest to develop a captivating storyline and sequence, the whole thing might end up messed up. This would translate to a waste of time and resources for the company.
Furthermore, the film might end up unacceptable as far as legal specifications are concerned. For instance, the use of sexual sensation is proved to be one of the best approaches in attracting a certain audience. However, using sexual sense could end up with an explicit video which might end up being banned. As a result, the film industry is creativity intensive industry in which one must be ready to meet the challenges expected.
Creative processes are usually flexibility demanding. This marks a challenge that creative careers meet. Unlike other working environments whose processes fit squarely in the normal working routines, creative processes demand for flexible working routines. Conventional working processes could not sufficiently allow creativity.
Using of processes such as exceptional handling or even evolutionary workflow might not be able to promote creativity despite their advanced nature. Therefore, creative processes might require working routines that have no specific design.
Unfortunately, very few organizations would offer a flexible working environment. Being a creative process work may then become a great challenge because one will, in many occasions find himself on the wrong side of the supervisors.
Other than having issues with the supervisors, the non-creative workers might feel that the one person performing creative tasks is being treated in a fair way as opposed to them this may result into technical problems in management. As a result, a person working in a position of creativity must be ready to face resistance from other workers who find him favored.
Budget allocation on a creative undertaking can be a challenging task. As mentioned earlier, the creative processes are prone to high variances of possible outcomes. In additions, they could end up with a disappointing outcome. Therefore, the management must put several aspects in consideration before coming up with the most appropriate budget for a given creative project.
In a film industry for instance, development of an animations sequence might call for heavy time and resource allocation. It is therefore necessary that a clear picture of the situation is understood to avoid loses that could occur in a case where the outcome comes in a way that was not expected.
Seidel and Rosemann argue that it important that a person managing creativity understands the real tasks (what stage of the whole process) requires creativity. This is in a case where some parts need creativity while others operate from a normal perspective. Second, he should understand the characteristics of the process. He has to what kind of person is well fit for the job and what communication is necessary.
Finally, the manager must understand the impact that the creative process will have for the whole project. In the film industry, the outcome of an animation movie highly depends on the creativity of its production. Creativity is needed in terms of storyline and quality of production. As a result, the impact of the process of creativity on the whole project is hence very great. It determines the end result.
Finally, operating in teams can be a great challenge within a creative career. Scholarship points out that homogenous groups tend to get results faster and more efficiently as compared to heterogeneous groups. However, the heterogeneous groups come up with results that are more creative and which point out high level of ingenuity.
This means that a manager in an industry that requires creativity has to make up his mind on whether to use homogenous groups that are easy to handle and come up with faster results but less ingenious or use heterogeneous groups that are harder to manage and take longer time but have better results. On the other hand, an individual that operates within this category has to meet challenges like listening to other people’s ideas so as to come up with a better solution.
For a business operation, creativity management is a great challenge but plays an integral role. It is through creativity that a business organization can survive competition from competitors. Also, creativity leads to outcomes that solve a given problem that eventually leads to better lives for the beneficiary of the product.
This means that a creative business organization will always have something for their clients. This is very likely to improve on the sales of the organization. What should a manager do to avoid the challenges and ensure productivity? He has to ensure that every creative process undergoes an approval stage. This will assist him to come up with a budget that best fits the process.
In addition, it will assist in reducing the risks of unfavorable outcomes. To promote creativity, flexible business processes should be developed. Exceptions for creative business processes must be put in place. Finally, communication must be given high priority throughout the whole project. First, the team handling the creative process needs to maintain a stead flow of communication.
On the other hand, others employees who are not involved in the creative process must be informed of the reasons for exceptions given to the creative workers. This might reduce chances of rifts among the workers. Eventually, the business organization might work better.
In conclusion, working in an environment that calls for creativity can be a challenging phenomenon. One needs to understand the challenges in order to maximize on the profitability of the organization as a whole. First, creativity needs flexibility, it also needs an advanced level of communication to enhance team work. Also, communication is necessary for brainstorming between the creative individuals in order to come up with a successful business idea or concept.
To promote creativity, the business organization must therefore ensure that they put appropriate measures in place in order to avoid conflict. This includes ensuring proper communication, process approval and increase flexibility. On the other hand, a business organization will not succeed without a creative string. One needs creativity to survive in the increasingly competitive business environment.
This is particularly true considering that creativity is the mother to productivity. Creatively designed products will increase overall sales. Therefore, every company needs creativity. With this in place, profitability is eminent.
Harvard Business Essentials. Harvard Business Essentials: Managing Creativity and Innovation. Chicago: Harvard University Press, 2003
McGuinness, Mark. Creative management for creative teams: Business coaching and creative business. London: Wishful Thinking, 2008.
Morgan, Gareth., Imaginization. The Art of Creative Management, Newbury, CA: Sage Publications, 1993
Nonaka, Ikujiro., and Hirotaka Takeuchi, The Knowledge Creating Company, London: Oxford University Press, 1995 Nystrom, Harry., Creativity and Innovation, New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1979
Seidel, Stefan and Michael Rosemann. “Creativity Management: The new challenge for BPM.” BP Trends, May 2008.
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Sutton, Robert., Weird Ideas that Work. 111/2 Practices for Promoting, Managing, and Sustaining Innovation, New York: The Free Press, 2002
Harvard Business Essentials, Harvard Business Essentials: Managing innovation and creativity (Harvard University Press, 2003). Coming up with novel ideas entails having adequate skills, outstanding expertise and above all motivation from the organization. This is what a creative organization needs. Creative ideas hence are nourished by these characteristics.
Stefan Seidel and Michael Rosemann. Creativity Management: The new challenge for BPS, 2008. The authors highlight the importance of making proper arrangements to contain and reduce creative risks. Considering the variability of outcomes and the unknown nature of the results, the novel idea could end up destructive to the company’s activities.
Robert Sutton. Weird Ideas at work. (New York, 2002) the outcome of a novel idea’s birth might be short of the expectations. On the other hand, it might squarely meet the expectations but go against the specified legal expectations. This might lead to law suits.
Mark McGuinness. Creative Management for Creative Teams. (London 2008). The quest to attract attention in a film industry might lead to explicit material. It is proved that sexual sense is one of the greatest avenue to attracting and retaining a certain market segment. This tricky but viable approach might lead a company to legal battles.
Mark McGuinness. Creative Management for Creative Teams. (London 2008) with specified working designs, creative individuals might be blocked from attain their best potential. For instance, creative individuals may need to operate beyond normal working hours or they may want to use company computers or other resources at a larger scale. Routine might not allow this. In order to allow this, undefined working patterns should be developed.
Stefan Seidel and Michael Rosemann. Creativity Management: The new challenge for BPS, 2008 undefined working designs given to creative workers might lead to friction as other workers feel less advantaged. This calls for proper information
Ibid, without understanding the process, it is impossible to make appropriate calculations for the risk involved. Management must understand the magnitude of the implications in the event that the process is successful. On the other hand, he has to understand the magnitude of the risk involved.
Gareth Morgan. Imaginization: The art of creativity management (Sage Publications, 1993)
Nonaka Ikujiro and Hirotaka Takeuchi. The Knowledge Creating Company. (London, 1995), homogenous groups are easier to manage. In a creative environment, homogeneous groups are however not yhte best choice. It is important that heterogeneous groups which are more difficult to manage are used. This means that managing creativity calls for more challenges in terms of coming up with a decision from a heterogeneous group.
Harry Nystrom. Creativity and Innovation. (New York, 1979). Communication is the life blood of any given organization. Without it no activity can be carried out successfully. In a creative environment, the need for communication is far much more than a normal organization. This is especially true given the nature of challenges associated with creativity management.