Categories
Uncategorized

Creativity

For this post, I wanted to look at the thought of “Leaders must be creative in order to spark innovation and inspire those that they lead.” I personally really agree with this statement. There are three parts to that: actually being creative, sparking innovation, and inspiring. As a leader, you should be creative. Being creative isn’t really something you can be taught but rather something you need to try and experience. It is my opinion that a lot of learning is as such. Being simply taught something is not enough to truly learn it. If you want to learn something, you need to practice it. A lot. Creativity is no different. It sounds stupid to practice creativity but it is really important. I like to dream and plan random things out in my head and imagine how it all fits together.

Then, you need to be able to spark innovation with your team. This requires a number of things on a leader’s part. Firstly is obviously creativity. A leader needs to be interesting in order to spark innovation. An environment with same old same old is not conducive to innovation. Then the leader needs to be passionate and committed. Contrary to what some may think, people can see through others’ false motivation/see their true motives. If a leader is not motivated, or not motivated for the right reasons, their team will see through it and not be motivated themselves.

Finally, you have to inspire others. This is, in my opinion, the hardest part. Part of the responsibility falls on the leader, and some falls on your team. Obviously you can put the greatest leader with the least motivated team and you won’t have much inspiration. But conversely, you can be a bad leader with a good team and that’s entirely on you. This goes back to the motivation, too. A motivated leader will inspire their team to be motivated and think of new ideas.

Categories
Uncategorized

Listening

Listening is an important part of life. It’s even more important in design. Without listening you can’t have empathy with a user. Without empathy, you can’t understand a user’s pain points. And without understanding a user’s pain points, you can’t create a proper solution that works for them.

I think part of why we, in 2020, are as hostile as we are is simply due to a lack of listening. I attribute this partially to the internet and the age of instant information. People are so used to having everything at their fingertips that they won’t People will read headlines and go off of those without “listening” further into the article. This leads to in most cases a fundamental misunderstanding about what the article was about. That’s why I believe a lot of misinformation today is simply due to not listening fully – due to this more than anything.

In practice, this behavior manifests itself in more ways than just that though. In conversation, sometimes people will formulate a response in their head before fully listening to the person they’re talking to. Hell, even I’m guilty of that. Good leaders will listen to their team members and devote their attention to them. This way, the leader can understand their team, how they work, and what their pain points are. A leader’s job is to enable their team to do the best work they can, and that can’t happen if they aren’t listening to their team. Not just auditory listening but “listening” to other things – tone, demeanor, and other non-verbal cues. These can be great hints that can help you as a leader make better decisions.