Leadership And Creativity

As I shared in a recent post “Share Your Passion,” I love to learn. Learning energizes, motivates and inspires me.

These last three days I was immersed in learning, when I attended the Minnesota Library Association 2012 annual conference at Saint Paul River Centre. I had a great time attending different sessions on topics of interest to me and networking with library professionals from the state.

Thanks to the conference, I was able to connect with people such as Patricia Conley, Washington County Library Director. We knew each other for a long time, but not in person. We were able to sit together and chat during the luncheon. It was nice to get to know people in your local community.

One of the sessions I had today was by Alec Sonsteby from Metropolitan State University on organizational creativity. He shared his research findings and offered some ideas on how leaders can foster creativity in the workplace. It’s a fascinating topic for me and the presentation was great.

Leaders who foster creativity:

  • Set clear expectations,
  • Offer constructive feedback,
  • Avoid micromanaging,
  • Hire persistent, flexible people with broad interests, high energy, and self-confidence who demonstrate independence of judgment and willingness to take risks,
  • Don’t cut professional development or continuing education funding,
  • Partner with your users in joint ventures,
  • Assign time for play and experimentation,
  • Decide what to build and what to give up.

If you are in a leadership position, ask yourself: “Am I doing these to foster creativity in my organization/office/unit?”