Employees Essay, Research Paper
Eight Ways to Spur Creativity in Your Employees
By Daniel Collison, Associate Editor, Smart Workplace Practices
It’s a dog-eat-dog business climate. To ensure your business’s survival beyond 2001, listen to your workers’ profit-minded, productivity-boosting suggestions. What follows are eight tips for boosting employee creativity.
1. Model creativity Change a procedure. Kick-off a new one. You won’t prompt worker creativity if they don’t see it in you. 2. Assure job security Before a successful idea crosses the finish line, a hundred lesser ideas drop out of the race. Reassure employees that they won’t be fired, they won’t be ridiculed, berated, ostracized or punished when their bright ideas fizzle. 3. Workers notice vocabulary of creativity Talk the language: Let workers hear you using terms like “change,” “experiment,” “risk-taking,” “new” and “creative.” 4. Exercise patience It takes time to create a creative workplace. A toddler doesn’t walk overnight. Students learn multiplication tables before opening calculus primers. In the same way, workers need time to grow into their creative talents. 5. Streamline procedures Imagine that an employee on the bottom rung of the ladder makes a suggestion. Does your firm’s red tape hamper that suggestion from rising to the top? If so, it’s time to rethink your suggestion system.
6. Encourage little ideas
Before a 180-watt idea lights up in a worker’s head, many 60-watt ideas pop up. When you scoff at the little ideas, you turn off a worker’s creative processes.
7. Challenging tasks further inventiveness Delegate challenging jobs. Most bosses snatch for themselves the challenging, rewarding tasks. They hand out lesser assignments to subordinates. But these workers can’t exercise much creativity when they’re sharpening pencils. How about sending the big assignments their way a bit more often? 8. Reward top-notch suggestions Money isn’t often the most effective reward. Try throwing a surprise party or treating the worker to a special dinner. Public shows of appreciation such as these are big hits with employees. We recommend: Find out if your work environment can nurture creativity. Ask employees to list those attitudes harbored by you and your supervisors which stifle or foster inventiveness. For the best results, ask a consultant to conduct this survey.