For too long we have be arguing and debating, delivering our point of view as a subject for discussion, inclusion in a debate from which we struggle to draw a mutual conclusion. This limits our understanding, it places emotional barriers in the way of collaborated communication and it causes conflict and compromise. It stunts our ability to think creatively whilst dramatically limiting our capabilityof acting constructively and in our full potential.
If we really want to operate in a culture that encourages cooperation, teamwork, creativity and commitment then we need to communicate around a framework that encourages such consensus. These 5 critical components are key to thinking, communicating and operating at real levels of peak performance.
1. The difficult debate between Facts and Feelings.
Jennifer Lerner, PhD, director of the Emotion and Decision Making Group at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government concludes that a bad mood can cost you because a sense of sadness lowers our self‐esteem and urges us to pay more in an attempt to re‐establish self‐worth. Equally an Australian psychology expert Professor Joe Forgas, who has been studying emotions, has found that being grumpy makes us think more clearly. In contrast to those overly happy types, miserable people are better at decision‐making and less gullible, his experiments showed. While cheerfulness fosters creativity, gloominess breeds attentiveness and careful thinking. Emotional extremes radically influence our interpretation of the facts. When balanced in equal measure the influence and effect of emotional involvement in any decision making process can massively motivate and inspire constructive action.
2. The cost of Conflict versus Collaboration.
In a recent study it was found that “90% of Australians and New Zealanders work in a negative workplace culture of blame, indecision, conformity and confrontation. It is fair to assume that the numbers are similar in other parts of the world. “Our key finding is that too many organisations reinforce cultures which promote conflict, avoidance and people playing politics to gain influence.” Comments Mike Gourley, Director, Human Synergistics and study co‐ordinator who concluded that this was highly detrimental to growth and creativity. Since the age of the Ancient Greeks we have been debating and deciding on a course of action based on a consideration of pros versus cons and so denoting conflict by removing the opportunity to combine contrasting view points, mixed skill sets, diverse experience and unique approaches to creatively conform unanimously.
3. The contrast of reality versus desire.
We still have a long way to go before we can claim to operate in a culture that is truly highly performing. While senior managers want cultures that encourage initiative, co‐operation, teamwork, goal setting, creativity and commitment, most instead unwittingly develop cultures that encourage politics, internal competition, individualism, avoidance of blame and an unwillingness to commit. Often these forces are at odds with management's espoused values and this explains why, in many organisations, such core values are viewed with skepticism or even outright disdain. The Human Synergistics study concluded that Organisations with Aggressive/Defensive cultures showed higher volatility in their sales and earnings results when compared to organisations with Constructive cultures who showed significantly better results in terms of earnings/sales ratios.
4. The disastrous consequences of Indecision.
In a recent survey conducted by Sirota Survey Intelligence, three of the six main obstacles to performing their jobs that employees identified were tied to decision‐making. Poor decision-making was chief among them, followed by secrecy and delays. The survey concluded by ranking managerial indecision as one of the top office torments above issues such as low pay. Indecision not only causes delays but it stimulates frustration, destroys motivation, causes costs to rise and more mistakes to be made. In short the cost of correcting the wrong decision is less than the cost of indecision.
5. The potential for purpose in every problem.
Thought is energy, especially a concentrated thought laden with emotional energy. Thoughts change the balance of energy around us, and bring changes to the environment in accordance with them. If we sit in fear of the problem then the environment we surround ourselves with becomes a fearful one in which to exist. If we concentrate instead on deriving a constructive, collaborative and creative solution then we are feeding the future with the essence of what we would like it to be. The inevitable is a course of nature. Problems stimulate solutions, they are the fuel with which to generate innovation, they are the painful prompt that pushes us into action and they are there to be harnessed to our greater advantage.
So, what happens when a creative culture grows as a result of collaboration and consensus?
“A radical new synthesis of all these innovation and creation processes shows that all human beings think the same way when they create, regardless of the product they make. If you become aware of this process in your own work, you can do what you already do, better and faster.”
The PRIZM Game Company Ltd.
A culture that is inspired, motivated and energized by their own creations and in their own individual relationships is one that is empowered to reaching the levels of peak performance and collaboration that coaches, gurus, directors and leaders like yourselves constantly strive to achieve.
By appreciating that we each have a unique point of view, in knowing that such views can be limited by our understanding and sense of perspective and by fully embracing the fact that it is only ever our own actions that we have the complete capacity to control we can begin to see how best the forces and energies that surround us can be harnessed to our greater advantage. We can look at a problem or situation from a rounded, multi-perspective point of view and start to connect to the power of the brains of others so as to further enhance our own attitudes and abilities. This is the way that simple solutions surface. It is by capitalizing on the power of combined creative and critical thinking that we can really begin to radically improve the way we communicate, interact and operate.
If you’re looking for an easy answer to stimulating a creative culture, inspiring innovative new ideas and empowering others to feel energized enough into taking action then quite simply, it is imperative that you change the way you perceive your situation.
We live in a world that is constantly changing and evolving. So too must you if you intend to keep up.
Since the Ancient Greeks we have been thinking in a very logical and linear fashion.
Now is the time to collaborate and get creative.