How can innovation become part of our work routine and how can it become a true culture in business? This is the theme of the ISE 2020 opening keynote held by Duncan Wardle, former Head of Innovation and Creativity at Disney.
Have you ever thought about how to build an elephant parachute? Or to become the stylist of invisible clothing? These are some of the challenges that Duncan Wardle launched to the large audience present at the opening keynote, as always hosted the evening before the opening of ISE at the RAI Forum in Amsterdam. A speech spoken at very high speed and presented with great energy and engagement with the public, who answered the questions, made observations, and participated as we had rarely seen before.
In fact, Wardle’s impossible challenges aimed to make us think how we sometimes stop in front of challenges because they appear too great to us, so we end up giving up and not seeing them through. According to Wardle, creativity – and above all the shared creativity of a group – can lead us to give positive answers even to what seems impossible to us at first.
But Wardle’s message didn’t stop at pure theory, he also moved onto examples and practical advice for working life: what is creativity? It is the habit of doing new things, yet in the company people often say they do not have time to be creative; but according to Wardle the problem is not time but the approach, that is, the desire to let the subconscious open the door to our rationality. Not only that, but also replacing the ‘no’ that we answer with so many times with a proactive and open “Yes, and…”
With the recommendation not to be afraid of diversity, because diversity is innovation, it is wealth and change, and being and working with those who are different from us leads us to visions and ideas that otherwise could not be conceived. Finally, another great recommendation from Wardle is curiosity, because it is only through new stimuli that the new can enter our thoughts, becoming a way of thinking.
We are now in the era of Artificial Intelligence, a technology that some already fear a little, thinking that it will radically change our world and potentially lead to the loss of many jobs. But according to Wardle every fear must be banished, thanks to creativity, which is what makes the human unique. The peculiar features of a human are creativity, imagination, curiosity and intuition … this is what makes us unique and this is the true path of evolution.
This was a nice way to open ISE 2020- with a new vision of creativity, both concrete and expendable in everyday life.
This post is also available in: Italian