May 20, 2013

Monday Business - Being Creative at Work


Want to be creative at work? Here are four simple things to remember that can help you achieve just that taken from Teresa Amabile's The Progress Principle.

1) Progress Motivates You More Than Anything Else

Nothing is more motivating than progress in meaningful work and nothing more taxing than setbacks. Even when progress happens in small steps, a person’s sense of steady forward movement toward an important goal can make all the difference between a great day and a terrible one. So much so that this is a fundamental management principle: facilitating progress is the most effective way for managers to influence inner work life. 

Bonus: Progress not only affect motivation. Progress also inspires joy.

2) Heavy Time Pressure Kills Creativity. But Zero Pressure Is Lousy Too.

Heavy time pressure kills creativity and morale. On the other hand, having no deadlines makes people bored. Much like with stress, low-to-moderate time pressure produces the best results. In general, low-to-moderate time pressure seems optimal for sustaining positive thoughts, feelings, and drives.
If you're the type of person who thrives on deadlines, know that heavy time pressure has a negative effect and can reduce creativity for *days*. There’s a kind of “pressure hangover,” with lower creativity persisting for two days or more.

3) You’re More Creative When It’s Not About The Money

Artwork done for love was judged to be of higher quality by artists than pieces done for money. Commissioned works were rated as significantly less creative than the non-commissioned works, yet they were not rated as different in technical quality. Moreover, the artists reported feeling significantly more constrained when doing commissioned works than when doing non-commissioned works.
So how can you reward good creative work when money hurts performance? Bonuses. Not expecting any extras helps produce higher levels of creativity. Rewards that support personal motivation are best, like helpful feedback, time, freedom or resources to pursue exciting ideas.
Intrinsic motivation is still best, and extrinsic motivation that’s controlling is still detrimental to creativity, but extrinsic motivators that reinforce intrinsic drives can be highly effective.

4) Want To Be More Creative? First, Get Happy

The more positive a person’s mood on a given day, the more creative thinking he did that day. There is even a carryover effect for the next two days after (what psychologists call an incubation effect) There is a definitive connection between positive emotion and creativity.
Source: Eric Barker

So Planning, doing something we enjoy and keeping

a positive attitude = really worth it:)


keep a work diary and see what connections you can make between what happens at work and how you feel. 

Hope you'll have a wonderful, happy and creative week,

Patricia


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