// BarryBlog //

A creative dumping ground for issues that interest me personally and professionally, with the thought they may interest you too. Issues such as the business of design, the design of business, the design of objects, design strategy, creative direction, innovation, creativity, thought leadership, observations, as well as recommendations, mid-century modern decorative arts and architecture, and the state of my thinking (and currently the state of my heart).

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Teresa Amabile: 6 Creativity Myths.

Competition Beats Collaboration: True or False?

FALSE. There's a widespread belief, particularly in the finance and high-tech industries, that internal competition fosters innovation. In her surveys,
Teresa Amabile, head of the Entrepreneurial Management Unit at Harvard Business School and one of the country's foremost explorers of business innovation found that creativity takes a hit when people in a work group compete instead of collaborate.

The most creative teams are those that have the confidence to share and debate ideas. But when people compete for recognition, they stop sharing information. And that's destructive because nobody in an organization has all of the information required to put all the pieces of the puzzle together.
Eight years ago Amabile began working with a team of PhDs, graduate students, and managers from various companies, and she collected nearly 12,000 daily journal entries from 238 people working on creative projects in seven companies in the consumer products, high-tech, and chemical industries. She didn't tell the study participants that she was focusing on creativity. She simply asked them, in a daily email, about their work and their work environment as they experienced it that day. She then coded the emails for creativity by looking for moments when people struggled with a problem or came up with a new idea.

You'll be surprised by her findings in this Fast Company article.

( via the uber-linked Swissmiss )

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