The Front End of Innovation Conference in Boston got off to a roaring start yesterday with a day of powerful and informative speakers. I attended a session led by former director of JP Morgan's private banking division head Bill Greenwald on 'The Neuropsychology of Creativity and Design,' which was full of practical techniques on unleashing innovation in the workplace.
Greenwald, after leaving Morgan, went back to school to study the brain, and based his program on current research into the brain function. He stressed the need to eliminate fear from the workplace in order to generate new ideas and collaboration. 'fear and survival mode.' 'Put that (brain scan) helmet on and I can see what your brain does,' he told the audience. 'See how fear takes over. How does the US Navy train its SEALS against fear? You can't eliminate it, but you can desensitize it, and take your fear offline. When they see danger they keep fear at bay, so they can still think creatively by drilling this. They envision success to distract themselves. They think about going home and surprising their daughter after this firefight, keep the fear at bay.'
Here are some creative techniques offered up by Bill Greenwald:
1. Increase exposure to creative endeavor.
2. Value and expect creative behavior. What are your leaders doing as role models? Shutting people down 'never works.' If you want to value something you have to say yes to ideas.
3. Avoid premature judgment.
4. Provide time and opportunity for solitude.
5. Provide communion with other creative individuals.
6. Give people time to think
I'll be blogging later today on other sessions, so stay tuned.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Robert B. Tucker is president of Innovation Resource Consulting Group in Santa Barbara, California and a much requested speaker at conferences. www.innovationresource.com