The Art of Listening

The Art of Listening

“Always the beautiful answer who asks a more beautiful question.”                — ee cummings (Poet 1894–1962)   Beautiful questions ask us to dig a little deeper. By their nature, they force us to think differently about the things we take for granted. They can evoke in us creative and deeply-felt responses about […]

Elegance, Simplicity and Creative Leadership

Elegance, Simplicity and Creative Leadership

  “Not everything simple is elegant, but everything elegant is simple.” ~ Matthew E. May, In Pursuit of Elegance What does it mean for something or someone to be elegant?  In science, a solution is said to be elegant when it is simple, ingenious, concise, unexpected and persuasive. (Glynn, 2010). Einstein’s theory of relativity is a classic […]

Critical Thinking and Creative Thinking with Margaret Heffernan

Critical Thinking and Creative Thinking with Margaret Heffernan

Margaret Heffernan, Creative Leader In one of the online MBA courses I coach at Athabasca University we ask students to identify an individual they would like to be their leadership mentor. They must describe the leader and explain what attributes that person possesses from which, as leaders themselves, they might receive guidance and inspiration. Every […]

What is at the Heart of Creative Dialogue?

What is at the Heart of Creative Dialogue?

What is creative dialogue? When we refer to the term “dialogue” we are usually suggesting a richer and deeper outcome to a conversation; one that is open and sincere. We expect more from dialogue than we do from an ordinary conversation, discussion or debate. In dialogue, we expect the means to be collaborative and the […]

The Emotions That Makes Us More Creative

The Emotions That Makes Us More Creative

What emotions fuel creativity?  Being creative is a messy process. It used to be that if you wanted to be more creative you would place yourself in a positive frame of mind — think beach and gentle breezes, the toothless grin of a happy baby, your favourite music. I bet you’re smiling already. However, positive […]

Hallmarks of a Great Listener

Hallmarks of a Great Listener

Great listeners are like trampolines. You can bounce ideas off them. So say researchers Jack Zengler and Joseph Folkman in their study “What Great Listeners Actually Do.” Great listeners give us energy and support. We’ve all experienced not-so-great listeners —- those listeners who are looking for cracks in our argument so they can prove us […]

Warren Berger on Beautiful Questions

Warren Berger on Beautiful Questions

“Every good questioner should share his and her questions with others,” says Warren Berger, award-winning author of the book “A More Beautiful Question: The power of inquiry to spark creative ideas,” (2013). You never know what beautiful answers you’ll receive. I refer to his work in my blog as well as Amy Herman’s. Here you […]

Amy E. Herman on Visual Intelligence

Amy E. Herman on Visual Intelligence

This month I’d like to draw your attention to two exciting videos by two creators I mention in my blog “Releasing Creativity.” The first is by Amy Herman, author of Visual Intelligence: Sharpen Your Perception, Change Your Life. (2016) She provides ways to improve your skills of observation. Quoting Wayne Dwyer she says, “If you […]

“Deep Work” by Cal Newport

“Deep Work” by Cal Newport

I had a relaxing interlude just after New Years and was able to take my time reading two excellent books that I wholeheartedly recommend to you. Both contribute to creative work in different, but substantial ways.   The first is called “Deep Work” by Cal Newport (Grand Central Publishing, 2016).   You engage in deep […]

“Give and Take” by Adam Grant

“Give and Take” by Adam Grant

My second recommendation is by Adam Grant, called “Give and Take,” (Viking, 2013).   The subtitle is “A Revolutionary Approach to Success,” which I think is unfortunate, because it gives the impression that this is a facile and superficial self-help book. It is anything but. Having said that, it is “a revolutionary approach to success!” […]

Releasing Creativity

Releasing Creativity

    “If I had an hour to solve a problem and my life depended on the solution, I would spend the first 55 minutes determining the proper question to ask, for once I knew the proper question, I could solve the problem in less than five minutes.”               […]