The Anti-Creativity Checklist

March 20, 2010

My Anti-Creativity Checklist from Youngme Moon on Vimeo.
I was reading the Harvard Business Review and stumbled into this video about “The Anti-Creativity Checklist“. I watched this video and loved it, so I wanted to embed it over here on the thinkspace blog. Everywhere I look, I see companies with imagination, innovation, and out-of-box thinking. We’ve got an amazing community inside thinkspace! When you come by to visit thinkspace, ask to see our team wall where everyone on the team contributes ideas regardless of title. It’s our “Dream it”, “Like it”, “Work it” wall.  Post-its full of ideas, sometimes crazy ideas!
Listed below are the ways to be ordinary, soul-less, and boring.

  1. Play it safe. Listen to that inner voice.
  2. Know your limitations.
    • “I’m not an artist.”
    • “How should I know?”
    • “I’m not an innovator”
  3. Remind yourself:  It’s just a job.
  4. Make skepticism your middle name.
    • “Our organization’s not set up for that.”
  5. There’s no evidence that will work.
  6. Respect history. Always give the past the benefit of the doubt.
    • “We’ve always done it that way” — (I absolutely hate this one)
    • “The industry will never accept it.”
  7. Stop the madness before it can get started.
    • “How are you going to solve the human resource problem?”
  8. Been there, done that. Use experience as a weapon.
    • “You haven’t been around long enough to understand how things work.”
  9. Keep your eyes closed. Your mind too.
    • “I refuse to get caught up in all these technology fads.”
  10. Assume there is no problem.
    • “It was a tough year, but we can blame the economy.” (I hate this one too! No excuses!)
    • “Our next product release will kickstart our turnaround.”
  11. Underestimate your customers.
    • “Our customers are not going anywhere.”
    • “They are not ready for that.”
    • “They aren’t used to that.”
  12. Be a mentor. Give sound advice to the people that work for you.
    • “Just keep your head down and do your job.”
    • “I got where I am by not rocking the boat.”
  13. Be suspicious of the “creatives” in your organization.
    • “Those guys just don’t understand business.”
  14. When all else fails, act like a grown-up.
    • “I really don’t have time for this.”