Reflections on Creativity for 2023

Reflections on Creativity for 2023

What (or who) lights your Lamp of Inspiration?

In 1997, Reed Hastings was annoyed by being charged a large late fee after returning a videocassette he had rented. The idea for Netflix was born, and those of us old enough to remember Blockbuster’s hegemony promptly bid adieu to late fees.

In the late 1990s, Japan’s bullet train generated a loud boom when traveling through tunnels. One of the engineers tasked with solving this problem was also a bird watcher and took inspiration from the kingfisher bird to increase the aerodynamics of the train’s face. Thanks to biomimicry, the issue was solved.

Pablo Picasso is widely attributed to have coined the observation “Good artists copy. Great artists steal.” Yet it’s quite likely that he borrowed this phrase from someone else.

And so, the wheel of inspiration turns.

Creativity, Inspiration, and Leadership

In addition to the time we spend walking the world, many of us draw inspiration and creativity from both positive and negative experiences. Nowhere is this truer than with leadership styles.

Consider the worst boss you ever had. Now think about your best boss. What made them “best” and “worst” in your mind?

Now consider your own leadership style and what you hold dear. What principles, values, and behaviors of yours do you attribute to your best and the worst bosses? Chances are that quite a bit of your style was formed either proactively or reactively by those leaders.

Since this post is dropping at the end of the year, we’re going to land it right here, right now. As you head into 2023, consider from where you draw your inspiration. Ponder that as you think about your leadership style as well as any time you exercise creativity.

Should you get stuck, feel free to drop me a line. I’m always up for a good brainstorming session. And, since we both know you’re a great artist, I give you license to steal whatever we come up with.

Have a wonderful New Year!

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