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Creativity vs. Process

Written by Don Tinney on August 1, 2011

Implementers EOS People Process

Tension exists today between the promoters of creativity/innovation and the promoters of process. The sluggish economy has stimulated the assertion that unless a company is continually innovating, it can’t succeed.

As a 30+ year entrepreneur, I love creativity and being first with a revolutionary product or service, but I also love the principle – “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Nothing frustrates me more than to see a coach change the strategy at halftime, with their team ahead by 30 points, only to lose the game.

I love to surround myself with creative people, but I also love the people who are great at kicking out 10,000 perfect widgets, dotting every “i”, crossing every “t” and returning every single call.

Chaos often accompanies creativity and not all creativity is good. In fact, out of 20 new ideas, one might be a keeper. As already stated, getting creative with things that are already great, might be a huge mistake – enough to lose your business.

When we have a great experience with a business, the probability is high we will return to enjoy that experience again. We tell our friends so they can enjoy that same experience. When that great experience isn’t available, for whatever reason, it’s frustrating. Good chance we won’t be back.

As valuable as creativity can be – and certain industries require more innovation than others – consistency is far more valuable … and rare, because it’s harder to produce. It requires people who are passionate about and great at process. With so many businesses coming up short on delivery, execution trumps innovation.

In conclusion, we shouldn’t be pitting one against the other. Process and creativity are both important. If you have consistency with strategic creativity, you can be great for a long time.


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