In order to change pace a bit, I am going to answer the question I get asked more than any other regarding workplace performance from managers, employees, and business owners of all stripes and colors:
"How do I bring more creativity into the workplace?"
The very short answer to this is that people who bring creativity to work with them don't wait for permission. Giving your employees a blueprint or a plan for creativity is by its very nature almost certainly bound to fail because, well, that is not how creativity happens. Creativity is a Feng Shui-like phenomenon. It happens when you make room for it to show up. I will give you an example or two.
I am a person who is lucky enough to bring creativity with me wherever I go. That is just how my head works. Why? I am a rebel. Very recently, I created "Facebook in the Real World" day at work. I walked around hanging pictures of myself on the walls, handing out articles to people, letting them know that I thought they would find it interesting, I walked into rooms and announced mundane tidbits about my cat, and "liked" and "poked" people at random. It was epic. Everybody loved it. Laughing, smiling, and general merriment ensued wherever I went.
The best part about this was that I did not ask permission. Why? It didn't occur to me. I didn't think I needed to. That is the kind of work environment I am lucky enough to exist in.
Another thing I did recently was wear "The Dress of Good Fortune" to work. I wrote a bunch of quotes from famous women authors on small brown pieces of paper and sewed them onto a dress of mine. I invited people to take a fortune from "The Dress of Good Fortune", because, who doesn't like a good fortune every now and again? It stirred conversation and interaction between all who participated.
Here are ten ways to encourage creativity in your own work space or in the work space of your employees:
There you have it. Ten ways to bring creativity into the work place and the one rule to which you must abide if you are going to be a rebel. DO NOT WAIT FOR PERMISSION. Go forth bravely and create. We are desperate for your particular brand of genius.
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