Sunday, May 20, 2012

Product Management: two articles about creativity

I wanted to share two articles on harnessing creativity and using them to improve your product.

Jonah Lehrer, author of the book "Imagine", and
visual rendering of his main points.

Listen to Your Frontline Employees

Anthony Tjan shared a blog entry about listening to customer-facing employees.  Often these employees are lower rank in corporate hierarchy and tend not to get their input provided in influencing product changes.  In software world, technical support staffs and sales person are often in the frontline of interacting with customers, and get the most direct input.

I absolutely agree with Anthony's point.  When improving an existing product or creating a new one, it's important to involve these teams to get their ideas to frame the problems that customers have.  Sometimes it could be these frontline employees who have ideas of how to solve them.

Creativity for Entrepreneurs: 4 Tips

Jonah Lehrer was interviewed by staff, Kimberly Weisul.  He talks about how including a new voice and perspective in creative process improves the overall creativity.  It's because team is challenged to revisit old ideas from fresh perspective and bring new ideas to the table.  It's also important for team members to be able to share ideas and build on someone else's by synthesizing collectively.

Creativity sparks when different ideas are exchanged in constructive and collaborative environment.  In order to leverage it, you have to create an environment where people are not afraid of sharing ideas and building on someone else's.  Mixing and mingling with different team members are important ingredient in maximizing the group's creative potential.

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