Creative Company

There was a sizeable turnout at Ernst & Young in Munich to listen to the authors Dirk Dobiéy and Thomas Köplin present their thoroughly-researched book Creative Company. The title refers to innovative enterprises as much as the social company we choose to cultivate.

The format for this early evening “salon” worked well – a 30-minute talk summarising the writers’ ideas and findings embellished with attractive slide-images like a stage backdrop, followed by a panel discussion (of sorts), a Q & A (with the usual tedious monologue from someone in the audience), and finally an informal meal and conversation over wine.

These co-founders of the dynamic network Age of Artists, based near Dresden, outlined four principles – namely, confidence, passion, curiosity and resilience – for building a creative firm, and four behaviours we need more of – perceiving, reflecting, playing and performing. Various practical suggestions from embracing diversity and variety to expressing appreciation and defining collective purpose were mentioned.

The panel, which included the Director of Munich’s Pinakothek der Moderne, Prof. Dr. Bernhart Schwenk and Ralf Kirberg, the founder and Chairman of a sculpture network and Director of EY Future of Work project, pondered what we can all learn from artists, especially finding the courage to express ourselves and experiment.

However, questions were raised about how applicable and practicable it really is in our current VUCA business world, with all its demands and emphasis on speed and efficiency, to co-create the space, freedom and slower-pace required to foster more original and fresher thinking. How do we make time – and find the patience – for the kind of generative conversations that allow ideas and insights to emerge through our connection? For this we will need to see a paradigm shift to the collective – in leadership, creativity and intelligence.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *