Creativity, Inc. A book for managers who want to lead their employees to new heights

Creativity inc overcoming the unseen

Building a sense of purpose at Pixar

Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration

Creativity inc overcoming the unseen – as a young man, Ed Catmull had a dream: to make the world’s first computer-animated movie. He nurtured that dream first as a Ph.D. student at the University of Utah, where many computer science pioneers got their start, and then forged an early partnership with George Lucas that led, indirectly, to his founding Pixar with Steve Jobs and John Lasseter in 1986. Nine years later and against all odds, Toy Story was released, changing animation forever.

Since then, Pixar has dominated the world of animation, producing such beloved films as Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Up, and WALL-E, which have gone on to set box-office records and garner twenty-seven Academy Awards. The joyousness of the storytelling, the inventive plots, the emotional authenticity: In some ways, Pixar movies are an object lesson in what creativity really is. Now, in this book, Catmull reveals the ideals and techniques, honed over years, that have made Pixar so widely admired-and so profitable.

Ceativity, Inc. is a book for managers who want to lead their employees to new heights, a manual for anyone who strives for originality, and the first-ever, all-access trip into the nerve center of Pixar Animation Studios-into the story meetings, the postmortems, and the ‘Braintrust’ sessions where art is born. It is, at heart, a book about how to build and sustain a creative culture-but it is also, as Pixar co-founder and president Ed Catmull writes, ‘an expression of the ideas that I believe make the best in us possible.’

Part autobiography, part history of Pixar, part business book, Creativity Inc is an inspiring look at the role creativity plays in one of the most successful media businesses the world has ever seen

Ed Catmull’s book, Creativity, Inc: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration (Random House, April 2014).

Creativity – When Focus Becomes Constraint

Creativity  – When Focus Becomes Constraint

Creativity – as some readers will know I started November full of commitment to the Nanowrimo challenge and writing the first draft of my third novel with at least 50,000 words completed in one month.

Out I set with the work I had already done; the story arc, the settings, the characters etc.

For the first week or so all went well and I had the “right” number of words to report each day against my title.

By the second week I was starting to flag a little and meeting the commitment was hard alongside my other work. But I was still hitting, and usually exceeding, the target every day.  I kept going!

At the end of the third week nature took a hand. I came down with some relatively minor illness. But it meant I had to stop. And stopping meant I could take stock.

Creativity – when you need to stop!

I was focussed so hard on meeting the target that I was no longer actually enjoying the process of writing. Perhaps even worse than that, what I was writing wasn’t very good and nor do I think it was very interesting. If I didn’t actually feel engaged with my hero – how were my readers going to feel?

Now I do believe setting goals is a good approach to creative writing as with anything else in life. I believe in measuring progress towards those goals. But they do need to be appropriate to the task. And they do need to become your own goals, not someone else’s, to be really successful.

I believe as well that if you wish to let your creative juices flow, there can be a time when focus becomes a constraint and you need to set yourself free.

Warm regards

Wendy
wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com
http://wisewolfcoaching.com

 

Creativity:When Focus Becomes Constraint

Creativity: When Focus Becomes Constraint

Advice from Wendy Smith. Wendy is a Career and Life Coach helping you find fresh perspectives on life and your career.  You can book a FREE coaching session or find out more at this link

Creativity – as some readers will know I started November full of commitment to the Nanowrimo challenge and writing the first draft of my third novel with at least 50,000 words completed in one month.

Out I set with the work I had already done; the story arc, the settings, the characters etc.

For the first week or so all went well and I had the “right” number of words to report each day against my title.

By the second week I was starting to flag a little and meeting the commitment was hard alongside my other work. But I was still hitting, and usually exceeding, the target every day.  I kept going!

At the end of the third week nature took a hand. I came down with some relatively minor illness. But it meant I had to stop. And stopping meant I could take stock.

I was focussed so hard on meeting the target that I was no longer actually enjoying the process of writing. Perhaps even worse than that, what I was writing wasn’t very good and nor do I think it was very interesting. If I didn’t actually feel engaged with my hero – how were my readers going to feel?

Now I do believe setting goals is a good approach to creative writing as with anything else in life. I believe in measuring progress towards those goals. But they do need to be appropriate to the task. And they do need to become your own goals, not someone else’s, to be really successful.

I believe as well that if you wish to let your creative juices flow, there can be a time when focus becomes a constraint and you need to set yourself free.

Wendy Smith is a career consultant, life coach and business coach with depth of experience in helping people lead happier lives and feel more fulfilled. She has worked in management as well as coaching and personal development, as well as starting up her own businesses. That means she is equally at home helping clients find a new career direction, starting-up a new business or dealing with life’s more challenging personal issues. 

Need help finding work, with problems at work, at home or with relationships? Book a FREE coaching session with Wendy or find out more at this link

 

Steve Jobs – Quotes On Success and Creativity

Steve Jobs – Quotes On Success and Creativity

Steve Jobs remains our hero.

Kick-start your brain. New ideas come from watching something, talk to people, Steve Jobsexperimenting, asking questions and getting out of the office!

Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.

You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.

The people who are doing the work are the moving force behind the Macintosh. My job is to create a space for them, to clear out the rest of the organization and keep it at bay.

Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.

We think the Mac will sell zillions, but we didn’t build the Mac for anybody else. We built it for ourselves. We were the group of people who were going to judge whether it was great or not. We weren’t going to go out and do the market research. We just wanted to build the best thing we could build.

It’s only by saying ‘no’ that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.

That’s been one of my mantras – focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.

It took us three years to build the NeXT computer. If we’d given customers what they said they wanted, we’d have built a computer they’d have been happy with a year after we spoke to them – not something they’d want now.

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design IS how it works.

Your customers dream of a happier and better life. Don’t move products. Enrich lives.

Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently – they’re not fond of rules…because the ones how are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.

Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach
Wendy Smith, Principal Coach, WiseWolf Life and Career Coaching

Wendy Smith is a career consultant, life coach and business coach with depth of experience in organisational development, management, coaching and personal development. That experience means she is equally at home helping clients find a new career direction, starting-up new businesses or dealing with life’s more challenging personal issues. You can contact her at wendy@wisewolfcoaching.com

Wendy has written a little eBook on how to get on with your boss and a book on job search – you can find all her books on Amazon at this link

         

Tuesday Quotes For Management – Steve Jobs On Success and Creativity

Tuesday Quotes For Management – Steve Jobs On Success and Creativity

Kick-start your brain. New ideas come from watching something, talk to people, experimenting, asking questions and getting out of the office!

Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.

You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.

The people who are doing the work are the moving force behind the Macintosh. My job is to create a space for them, to clear out the rest of the organization and keep it at bay.

Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.

We think the Mac will sell zillions, but we didn’t build the Mac for anybody else. We built it for ourselves. We were the group of people who were going to judge whether it was great or not. We weren’t going to go out and do the market research. We just wanted to build the best thing we could build.

It’s only by saying ‘no’ that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.

That’s been one of my mantras – focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.

It took us three years to build the NeXT computer. If we’d given customers what they said they wanted, we’d have built a computer they’d have been happy with a year after we spoke to them – not something they’d want now.

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design IS how it works.

Your customers dream of a happier and better life. Don’t move products. Enrich lives.

Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently – they’re not fond of rules…because the ones how are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.

Wendy Mason is a career coach.  She helps people reach their goals and aspirations, without sacrificing their home and personal life.  Before working as a coach, Wendy had a long career in both the public and private sectors in general management and consultancy as well as spells in HR.  She now divides her time between coaching and writing. You can contact Wendy at wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com and find out more athttp://wisewolfcoaching.com

Quotes For Aspiring Leaders

Quotes For Aspiring Leaders

Here are some quotes for aspiring leaders

  • Vision without action is merely a dream. Action without vision just passes the time. Vision with action can change the world! Joel Arthur Barker
  • When you come to a roadblock, take a detour. Mary Kay Ash
  • Whenever man comes up with a better mousetrap, nature immediately comes up with a better mouse. James Carswell
  • Creative thinking is not a talent, it is a skill that can be learnt. It empowers people by adding strength to their natural abilities which improves teamwork, productivity and where appropriate profits. Edward de Bono
  • You cannot mandate productivity, you must provide the tools to let people become their best. Steve Jobs
  • Even if you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just stand there. Will Rogers
  • A hunch is creativity trying to tell you something.Unknown
  • Life is “trying things to see if they work”. Ray Bradbury
  • To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle requires a creative imagination and marks the real advances.  Albert Einstein
  • If you really want something you can figure out how to make it happen. Cher
Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach
Wendy Smith, Principal Coach, WiseWolf Life and Career Coaching

Wendy Smith is a career consultant, life coach and business coach with depth of experience in organisational development, management, coaching and personal development. That experience means she is equally at home helping clients find a new career direction, starting-up new businesses or dealing with life’s more challenging personal issues. You can contact her at wendy@wisewolfcoaching.com

Wendy has written a little eBook on how to get on with your boss and a book on job search – you can find all her books on Amazon at this link

         

Friday Quotes For Aspiring Leaders

Friday Quotes For Aspiring Leaders

Image via CrunchBase

  1. Vision without action is merely a dream. Action without vision just passes the time. Vision with action can change the world! Joel Arthur Barker
  2. When you come to a roadblock, take a detour. Mary Kay Ash
  3. Whenever man comes up with a better mousetrap, nature immediately comes up with a better mouse. James Carswell
  4. Creative thinking is not a talent, it is a skill that can be learnt. It empowers people by adding strength to their natural abilities which improves teamwork, productivity and where appropriate profits. Edward de Bono
  5. You cannot mandate productivity, you must provide the tools to let people become their best. Steve Jobs
  6. Even if you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just stand there. Will Rogers
  7. A hunch is creativity trying to tell you something.Unknown
  8. Life is “trying things to see if they work”. Ray Bradbury
  9. To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle requires a creative imagination and marks the real advances.  Albert Einstein
  10. If you really want something you can figure out how to make it happen. Cher

Wendy Mason is a Life and Career Coach.  She helps people have the confidence they need to be successful at work and to change career while maintaining a good work/life balance. You can email her at wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com

  • Leadership, Management and Openness – Confidence and the Personal Development Mindset

  • How Many Leadership Styles Do You Need – Life Cycle Leadership
  • What is Transformational Leadership?

Outwitting the lovely Ondine, or making the right choices in hard times!

I watched a piece on breakfast television about a small child with something that sounded sinister, Ondine’s Curse.  This is a respiratory disorder that is fatal if untreated as sufferers stop breathing during sleep. It is very rare and the name is a reference to the myth of Ondine, a water nymph who had an unfaithful mortal lover. He swore to her that his every waking breath would be a testimony of his love. He was unfaithful so she cursed him; if he should fall asleep, he would forget to breathe. Eventually, he fell asleep and his breathing stopped. Anyway the story this morning was really about the child being able to be at home for Christmas because someone had invented a ventilator that was small enough for a child’s room!

Ventilators are usually large, cumbersome and difficult to accommodate! So this invention, not only adds to the happiness of a small child and her family, it also reduces the cost of her care to the NHS. No longer will she need expensive hospital resources, even with back up at home from community nursing staff, there will be a saving!

What struck me most was the need to take a long view when reducing costs. Inventing new equipment to reduce costs (and hopefully improve quality) long-term takes time and investment. Also, it requires creativity and teamwork! None of these qualities thrive in hard and uncaring environments. To achieve a climate that can deliver long-term ‘efficiency’ improvements while maintaining (or even improving) quality takes great leadership.

Exam question for December 2010 – do you think your leadership abilities would be up to the challenge? How are you going to maintain/improve them next year?

I would like to wish all readers a very Happy Christmas and a very creative New Year in this time of challenge! I hope you will come back because there will be lots more here next year to help you manage the changes you face!