August 2021 Countdown to Success: On Creativity, Autonomy and Result Orientated Work
Updated: Oct 12, 2021
5 Inputs, 4 Quotes, 3 Thoughts, 2 Challenges and 1 Question (August 12th, 2021)
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Here are 5 Inputs to Inspire, 4 Quotes to Contemplate, 3 Thoughts to Ponder, 2 Challenges to Conquer and 1 Reflection Question to help you grow this month.
5 Inputs to Inspire
I. Why Work Sucks and How to Fix It using ROWE: Results Orientated Work Environment. In this book founders Cali Resler and Jody Thompson will provide an excellent introduction to ROWE and the premise behind it. While lacking in plans for application of the concept, this book will provide a great introductory education behind the benefits and managerial techniques ROWE strategically applies. (https://amzn.to/3s75Mmd)
II. Looking for a comprehensive list of benefits of a flexible work environment? Then look no further than The Benefits of Workflex by the University of Michigan. This short overview will present the positive aspects from an employer and employee viewpoint and can be a great introductory resource for individuals looking to advocate for more intra-work flexibility. (https://hr.umich.edu/benefits-wellness/work-life/flexible-work-options/benefits-workflex)
III. Meet the Founders of ROWE and learn more about this management style in practice through their blog, case studies and consultative services. (https://www.gorowe.com/)
IV. While much in question recently, the Google 20% rule has long been looked upon as a model for businesses looking to increase creative workflow. This system seeks to provide employees a protected 20% of their average work week for creative projects as they relate to their field and salient interests. While 20% is not always possible, any structured time such as this promises great returns for the host employer and a more rewarding workplace for the employee. (https://www.inc.com/bryan-adams/12-ways-to-encourage-more-free-thinking-and-innovation-into-any-business.html)
V. How to Kill Creativity by Theresa Amabile is an oldie but a goodie. This 1998 article is packed with timeless insights into the negative practices that suppress creativity in a workplace. Based on Amabile’s academic text Creativity in Context this HBR article investigates the key drivers of creativity; creative-thinking skills, expertise and motivation and how workplace management can feed into these areas. (https://hbr.org/1998/09/how-to-kill-creativity)
4 Quotes to Contemplate
I. Keys to the Vault founder and business mentor Keith Cunningham on the importance of NOT taking every revenue opportunity in favor of other developmental opportunities:
We acted like it was a sin to miss a revenue opportunity. That makes as much sense as needing to eat everything at a Sunday buffet.
II. Author James Clear on crafting your creative journey:
Where to focus: For the beginner, execution, For the intermediate, strategy, For the expert, mindset.
III. American journalist and Eat, Pray, Love author Elizabeth Gilbert on the need to provide for your creativity:
Promise your creativity; “I will never ask you to provide for me financially, I will always provide for you.”
IV. Cartoonist and writer John P Weiss on the impact a lack of creativity can have on your mental well-being:
The more I put off doing the creative work that matters to me, the more miserable I become.
3 Thoughts to Ponder
I. You can work on your business now or in your business later. One allows you to set the creative course your business will take. The other forces you to react and create based upon a course set by others. Choose wisely.
II. Motivation-Hygiene Theory suggests that we can craft jobs for ourselves and others that avoid job dissatisfaction by providing adequate compensation in the form of salary, job security and cultural status. However, this compensation ONLY avoids job dissatisfaction. To create an environment containing job satisfaction we need to cultivate a culture of meaningful work, responsibility, and opportunities to grow.
III. Crafting a culture of autonomy within a full or overbooked schedule can be difficult. The continued reaction to external requests and needs saps an individual’s ability to think critically, decisively, and strategically. This leaves the individual with little motivation to tap into when moments to express true creativity are presented. To truly leverage these moments practitioners, need to become comfortable saying “No” to clients or opportunities.
2 Challenges to Conquer
I. Track your work hours for a week. Applications such as aTimeLogger or TimeTrack can allow you to do this. Next week, block off two percent of this work time for creative pursuits. Make this time non-negotiable and concentrate on something professionally interesting to you. Extra Credit: Add 2% every week until you’ve achieved 10% of your work time as “creative.”
II. Interview each of your peers or employees and determine where their professional interests lie. After interviewing them encourage them to brainstorm three project ideas in this area that could impact the practice. Work with them to select one project that aligns with the business’s mission and provide them the introductory resources needed to pursue this venture. Extra Credit: Rinse and repeat as projects are completed and/or eliminated as creative growth possibilities.
1 Reflection Question
How many people at your clinic really enjoy their jobs?
Until next month,
Dr. Eric Rooker
Founder of Operators to Owners