Saying ‘Innovation’ or ‘Creativity’ Is Not Enough

“What’s the opposite of innovation?,” the joke begins.  A tart punchline quickly follows: “Innovation consultants.”    Since I teach, coach and sometimes consult on innovation and creative leadership, that cynical joke gives me pause.  Consultants of all kinds are easy marks, of course, whether they are from well-known global firms or one-person shops.  But it… Continue reading

The Rise of the Creative Leader

To speak of a creative leader, or manager, is for some a paradox: creativity is chaotic and unrestrained while leadership is orderly and controlling, and setting the two together makes for an uneasy, potentially volatile combination. It was not always thus. A century ago, as businessmen entered the twentieth century seeking to differentiate themselves by… Continue reading

Recommended Readings for Creative Leaders to Close Out 2013

In the first half of 2013, we saw several new books that were not merely provocative but pioneering in the lessons and insights they offered to creative leaders. These included Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s manifesto for women in business, Lean In, Columbia Business School Professor Rita Gunther McGrath’s call for The End of Competitive Advantage in business strategy, economist… Continue reading

Innovative Leadership: A Thoughtful Model and (free!) Online Self-Assessment from Metcalf Associates

Metcalf Associates, a management consulting and leadership coaching firm, helped to plan a recent “Creating a Marketplace of Ideas” gathering in Columbus, Ohio. The event brought together several heavyweight thinkers about creativity, innovation, and creative cities and economies: Sir Ken Robinson, Jeff Dyer, and Richard Florida shared various insights that aimed to help local individual and businesses… Continue reading