Radical Creativity From Incremental Creativity ? Large Movements From Small Changes
Positive radical movement is the holy grail of nearly every decision maker. Every CEO wants to radically shift his profit and loss statement into the black, every inventor yearns to find the next killer gadget and every screenwriter wants to make the next significant leap in film.
Radical creativity (also known as transformational and disruptive) is the root of radical movement. The polar opposite of radical creativity is incremental creativity. A pervasive perception is that the two are separate and distinct, whereas in fact they are intricately linked.
There is significant data to suggest that radical creativity results from incremental changes:
a)The IT revolution took over sixty years. The first computers were monoliths made up of vacuum tubes and magnetic drums. Particular problems over a long period led to the development of the solid-state transistor. This in itself was a radical leap in technology and resulted in computers evolving into slightly smaller, faster, cheaper and energy efficient entities. The development of integrated circuits was the next leap, resulting in transistors being placed on silicon chips. The next radical leap was the coming of micro-processors which allowed thousands of integrated circuits to be placed onto silicon chips. The first Intel chip paved the way for Microsoft et al, but it still took years of incremental improvements before the first desktops arrived. Desktop computers led to their interconnectivity and led to the Internet. The Internet triggered e-commerce.
b)Many artists tend to incrementally experiment with certain ideas, after which new knowledge or other inputs will lead to radical shifts. This tendency exists with artists (review any artist over a period of time) and also on the macro level - cubism, German expressionism, Italian futurism, Russian constructivism, Dada and Surrealism and continuing to developments in American art (e.g. the Harlem renaissance, social realism, abstract expressionism).
c)The French Connection chain significantly boosted profits by a very small change ? the FCUK campaign.
In conclusion, radical change results from incremental changes and the input of new knowledge, which itself will have been the result of incremental improvement. Through the use of organised, systematic and structured processes it possible to speed up positive radical movement.
This topic is covered in depth in the MBA dissertation on Managing Creativity & Innovation, which can be purchased (along with a Creativity and Innovation DIY Audit, Good Idea Generator Software and Power Point Presentation) from http://www.managing-creativity.com
Kal Bishop, MBA
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About the Author: Kal Bishop is a management consultant based in London, UK. He has consulted in the visual media and software industries and for clients such as Toshiba and Transport for London. He has led Improv, creativity and innovation workshops, exhibited artwork in San Francisco, Los Angeles and London and written a number of screenplays. He is a passionate traveller. He can be reached on http://www.managing-creativity.com.