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March, 2005 Edition - Leadership Tools Monthly News
March 07, 2005

Creative Leadership

Leading Outside The Box!

Leadership Tools Monthly News

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Volume III - March, 2005 Issue

Creative Leadership
Leading Outside The Box!

T A B L E   O F   C  O N T E N T S

  1. Lessons-in-Leadership
    • Leading Outside The Box!
  2. Meeting for Results
    • Creativity In The Workplace
  3. The Juice Bar
    • Creative Thinking – For A Change!
  4. Reader Meter
    • Testimonials-R-Us!
  5. Site News
    • Updates - and What's Coming Soon!

Lessons In Leadership

Creative Leadership
Leading Outside The Box!

"Education is more than a luxury; it is a responsibility that society owes to itself."
- Robin Cook

Because of the number and complexity of the challenges faced by leaders, it is important that leaders generate innovative solutions to problem solving.

Top leaders are continually questioning more traditional methods of managing issues. The ability to generate creative solutions is essential in business today.

An organization’s ability to meet challenges in a changing environment, and with diminishing resources, will always be determined by the level of creativity and open-mindedness of its leaders.

The creativity of a leader, or a business in general, will suffer if they fail to engage in and promote an ongoing process of learning and development.

Consider these Five Ways of Changing The Way You View and Think About Problem Resolution:

  1. MAKE THE EFFORT - Accept that creativity is a process that can be supported and encouraged in the workplace.

    Many creative people don’t automatically generate innovative solutions or trend-setting ideas. Good leaders recognize that creativity is a skill to be developed over time.

  2. CHALLENGE OLD HABITS - Don’t give in to your first impressions. Ask for feedback from others when you recognize you are overly opinionated or somewhat rigid in your thinking.

    Attempt to view problems from the viewpoints of others with different interests.

  3. IDENTIFY BARRIERS TO CREATIVE THINKING - As you consider ways to promote creativity in the workplace, you will no doubt realize that some self-imposed barriers to a more creative work environment have been formed.
  4. THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX! - Do not allow yourself the luxury of seeking solutions exclusively from within a set of traditional parameters.

    Challenge all ingrained assumptions, question “common sense” solutions and welcome debate over “obvious truths”.

    Assist your team to identify these barriers to creativity and challenge the team to dispose of these barriers for a more healthy and productive work experience.

  5. TRACK YOUR PROGRESS - In order to truly know if you are making strides in developing a more creative work environment, track your progress.

    Assess how you view and think about problem solving over time. Hold yourself and others accountable for making incremental improvement in this important area.

The most successful leaders will foster a culture and work environment where the cutting-edge is highly valued.

"Dictionary is the only place that success comes before work. Hard work is the price we must pay for success. I think you can accomplish anything if you're willing to pay the price."
- Vince Lombardi

Meeting for Results

Creativity In The Workplace

"Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe."
- Abraham Lincoln

Leaders have the power and the responsibility to promote a creative work environment.

Leaders accomplish this by (1) encouraging creativity in its employees; (2) valuing cutting-edge solutions and calculated risk-taking; (3) providing opportunities for employees to engage in continuous learning; and (4) rewarding employees for taking advantage of learning opportunities.

In your next staff meeting, consider trying these five effective tips to foster a more creative work environment for your team.

  • Change The Scenery! - Hold your meeting somewhere else, or completely re-arrange the existing room to communicate that “something’s different”.
  • Encourage Team Participation - Make sure you aren’t the only one talking. Solicit the ideas of your team members. Let them know that you not only encourage them to contribute to the discussion, you “expect it" as each team member is also a valuable leader of the team.
  • Hire For Creativity - Let it be known among your staff that you are activity seeking creative people. Make the “creativity factor” a necessary quality for future hires.
  • Brain Storm For Success - Brainstorming is a key quality of creative thinking. The more people involved in the brainstorming process leads to a greater number of potential ideas and solutions. Invite everyone into the process.
  • BAN Idea-Assassin Language! - Redefine the rules to future discussions. Comments such as “that’s the way we do it here”, “the boss will never approve that”, and “that will never happen”, must be bannished!

Employees need to understand and believe that all ideas with potential are welcome and highly valued.

"Work like you don’t need the money. Love like you’ve never been hurt. Dance like nobody’s watching."
- Satchel Paige

The Juice Bar

Creative Thinking – For A Change

"The function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers."
- Ralph Nader

Something a bit different at the Juice Bar this month!

As leaders grow and develop, so do their respective “library of resources”. The book Thinking For A Change is a quality resource that we are recommending to our valued readers.

The author, John Maxwell, is also the creator of 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership. Both books can have a tremendously positive impact for the aspiring leader.

Basing his latest book on the theory that "successful people think differently than unsuccessful people", Maxwell guides readers on the journey of mastering good thinking to achieve their personal and professional potential.

Thinking For A Change is an excellent lesson on how we can receive more and give more in life by managing the way we think. Taking time for reflection and focusing our energy on what's truly important is a key lesson described in detail.

Maxwell uses extensive quotes, examples, and lessons from great thinkers and leaders throughout history to prove his point that critical thinking is essential for any person aspiring to assume leadership within an organization, or to gain control of one's personal life. is pleased to recommend this important selection.

"Color in a picture is like enthusiasm in life."
- Vincent Van Gogh

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