Weaving the Arts into Business for Creativity & Innovation

Many business leaders and artists have noted over the years the importance of weaving arts and business for a successful businesses. Linda Naiman, founder of Creativity at Work notes, “Dramatic changes in markets, technology, and global competition create the context for arts-based learning in business. Relying solely on logic, analysis and problem-solving skills is insufficient in today’s rapidly changing environment. Leaders need a new set of skills to cope with uncertainty and complexity.” Some of the most important advances in technology have been created by incredibly creative and artful people.

It’s easy to get stuck in non-creative routines in the work place. Hopefully this short article will inspire you to step outside of the mundane and grab on to ‘creativity’ and ‘innovation.’

For those working in recruiting and talent management actively seeking creative solutions certainly be pivotal to overall success. The process artists go through should be taken seriously by business leaders. Creative genius is often animated by pushing boundaries beyond established norms and can teach us about leadership, empathy, ambiguity, change, courage, and creativity.

It turns out that artists and business leaders have many parallels. Naiman again says, “Both involve having a guiding vision, a potent point of view, formulating an ideal, navigating chaos and the unknown, and finally producing a new creation.” Further, the arts can: help business people communicate more eloquently, help companies learn how to manage bright people, and help businesses become more innovative.

Thinking like an Artist

As you start your week check out these specific ways to bring the arts into your Monday morning meetings (and your overall philosophies and practices). Encouraging creativity should be discussed periodically and encouraged from business leaders.

  • Encourage team members to seek out ‘arts-based’ learning opportunities
  • Re-frame problems so as to generate new perspectives – encourage your team to engage in re-framing
  • Find relationships between unrelated ideas and events – incorporate drawing or painting images to illustrate how differently we all see things (helps us appreciate many points of view contribute to the whole)
  • Arrange things in a different order in order to spur creative juxtapositions
  • Take conceptual risks – so as to encourage passion and the selfless pursuit of an ideal
  • Use all the senses to surface insight – think beyond the mundane ways of working and thinking

This is just a short introduction to weaving the arts into your business. For more insights check out Arthur VanGundy and Linda Naiman’s “Orchestrating Collaboration at Work: Using Music, Improv, Storytelling, and Other Arts to Improve Teamwork.”