The Age of Creativity

Posted December 26, 2010 in Creativity
creativity in kids

creativity in kids

Unfortunately it’s rare for children to learn anything about creativity in school. You are taught to follow the rules and color between the lines. Basically they are taught to conform. Here’s an article in Career Life Attitudes that talks about that:

by Donna Graham

In the 20th century, children were raised to conform to whatever the school system was teaching, grow up and work for a good company, and stay with that company until they retired. Children were taught to follow directions and do what they were told. Unfortunately, this was more of a convenience for the parents and teachers than it was for the children. Turning the children into “Do as I say” robots made the life of adults much easier. This type of compliance did not prepare the children for adulthood.

As these children grew, they became part of our workforce. Most children went into average everyday routine jobs while others went to college and eventually into upper management. All a routine worker needed were a great set of left brain skills or way of thinking; the logical, sequential, spreadsheet sort of skills, to successfully accomplish routine work. Once again, by routine workers doing what they were told when they were told, the life of a person in upper management became much easier.

This type of compliance continued throughout the industrial age and well into the information age. But now the information age is ending. The days of the routine work are also ending. We are entering into the conceptual age which is the age of right brain workers doing non routine work.

In today’s society, the routine way is no longer good enough. It is now the right brain abilities like artistry, inventiveness, creativity, and big picture thinking which matter most. For our businesses to survive, we need employees not based upon compliance, but engagement. We need them to be conceptual thinkers and mostly, noncompliant in a professional way. In a nutshell, this means that we need workers with high creativity.

A great example of high creativity comes from a company called Microchip Technology. The man responsible for this company is Steve Sanghi. Sanghi uses technology straight out of the 1970’s to make his company successful.

Sanghi’s success comes from taking an old product, the microcontroller, and giving it a new life. Microcontrollers are slow chips which were put into laptops way back when. They were abandoned by Intel years ago and are considered junk by most people. But Microchip takes these microcontrollers and utilizes them, not in computers, but in other ways to make new products.

Sanghi has used these microcontrollers in such products as the Segway scooter, the Adidas-1 running shoe, the Tesla roadster, and the underwater LED display. Using old technology in new ways is undoubtedly a success derived from conceptual thinking.

Today’s successful companies are not in the business of focusing on routines, right answers, or 500 page policy and procedure manuals, instead they focus on engaging their employees and utilizing their creativity. These are the companies who have withered our recession successfully and will grow because of it.

Opportunities for business success are currently endless because of those with a high level of creativity to foresee what the left-brained smooth talkers are missing. These creative people have sat dormant for years in attempting to conform to a world of high compliance and obedience.

Now we are in a recession with no end in sight and these creative people are fed up. Many are taking action and acting on their creative abilities to improve their life. These people have successfully began new companies while others have used their creative ideas to improve their current companies.

Creative companies are easily spotted by their happily engaged employees, those who make the money for the company. They provide a unique customer experience which causes the customers to talk positively about them. These companies grow and prosper during bad times as well as good.

Employees have fewer sick days and go home in better moods. They feel good about their own creative accomplishments and learn from their mistakes. These employees are not depressed or hate their job in any way, which directly reflects customer satisfaction levels and the sustainability of the company.

Businesses today can expect to lose many valued employees when our recession is over mostly because of the new opportunities they have creatively dreamed about for the last few years. This recession has turned many creative employees into fighters who will stand up and take action to get what they want in their life.

Many countries, especially China and India, laugh at us as we continue to teach our children compliance while they strive to teach their children creativity. These children are the future Steve Sanghi’s of the world, those who will achieve great success while the rest of us are trying to maintain our routine ways of life.

Professional left brain smooth talkers are no longer needed in today’s businesses. What we need are people with high levels of creativity who can engage with each other and the customers, work as individuals or on a team, network successfully, and grow our companies. Businesses need to change and enter into the conceptual age or be devoured.

Filed under: brain, children creativity, conceptual thinkers, creative companies, creative ideas, creativity, inventiveness, left brain,