Being Creative

Every successful organisation can trace its beginnings to an energetic group of people with exciting ideas who decided to make them happen. As ideas progress to action, an organisation is formed. As the organisation grows, acquiring new resources (members, money and perhaps staff), it is necessary to develop a more structured approach. In becoming increasingly formal, governing bodies sometimes lose their ability to think and act creatively. Structures that were established as a 'means to an end' can become an 'end in themselves', and servicing the structure appears to become a priority.

It is vital for the governing body to make space to be creative:

  • To develop and adopt an ongoing problem-solving approach
  • To find new ideas to deal with old problems
  • To develop new ways of working
  • To fuel a debate about longterm futures
  • To encourage new people to join an exciting organisation
  • To remain adaptable to a constantly changing environment.

A creative approach can enable an organisation to produce quality plans vthat incorporate clear direction and strategic thinking. This may involve (calculated) risk-taking. It does not mean gambling with an organisation's funds but rather a willingness and openness to seek out opportunities that will help the organisation have a greater impact.

A creative approach can enable an organisation to produce quality plans vthat incorporate clear direction and strategic thinking...

Governing bodies trapped in the 'but we've always done it that way' mode of thinking will require a course of action to reintroduce creativity, even if some people are averse to such ideas. It is important that the governing body lifts itself out of its comfort zone; for example, by having special sessions to think about the future of the work, possibly facilitated by someone with skills in promoting creative thought.