How Artists Can Collaborate With Less Creative Peers (HBR)

full-time-artistI came across this in my morning email–and it resonates as a warning and a concern for all of our “Pioneer, Creative, and possibly Connector” (NT, NF) types.  Moreover as we push at major transformations at work, we have to remember that every team member is of the highest value and all have much to contribute.  ….thoughts….???

When creative projects struggle, a lack of good ideas is rarely the problem. Usually the issue is with incorporating the various ideas into the output. Team members who think of themselves as artists have a greater tendency to reject others’ creative ideas, but even artists need to be open to suggestions from others. Here’s how to do it:

  • Think of others’ input as general inspiration rather than as a challenge to your vision. Consider new ideas an opportunity to build on your thinking.
  • Maintain an unemotional demeanor during collaborations. Reacting less in the moment helps you maintain a less hostile tone.
  • Delay responding to new ideas. If your knee-jerk response to new ideas is rejecting them, give yourself time to think through an idea’s merits before making a decision about it.
  • Think of projects as learning opportunities, not products. Instead of focusing on getting every detail right, focus on a project’s useful takeaways.

Adapted from “How to Work with Colleagues Who Are Less Creative than You,” by Kimberly D. Elsbach et al.

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