Breakthrough Creativity and Mission Statements

Design - Creativity
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By Lynne Levesque

Recently, I facilitated a Breakthrough Creativity session for a department within a consumer products company.  The objectives of the session were several:  to introduce the participants to the Breakthrough Creativity concepts, to improve the functioning of the team, and to draft a mission statement for the department.  Prior to the session, participants completed the Breakthrough Creativity Profile, reviewed their results in the Breakthrough Creativity Participant Guide, read some material I had prepared on mission statements, and were asked to come up with at least one possible mission statement for the Department.

The first hour of the morning was spent reviewing the results of the Breakthrough Creativity Profile. Since the participants had all read the material in the Participant Guide beforehand, they were familiar with the talents and their own profiles.  In addition to going over all the talents so everyone was familiar with all eight- not just their own, we were also able to spend a few minutes integrating the results of the Profile with those of the Predictive Index which all of the participants had taken within the past several years.  In the second half of the morning, we discussed the results of their Team Profile which I had been able to generate prior to our session.

Over lunch we completed the final agenda item of the day: working on the department’s Mission Statement.  Much to everyone’s surprise we were able to come to agreement on a pretty final version.

The session proved to be a smashing success!  The department’s HR rep also attended the workshop as an observer.  At the end of our time together, she commented on how well the session had gone and how much everyone had participated (which had not been necessarily expected, given some of the personalities in the room).  When my client, the head of the department, commented on how pleased she was with the mission statement draft, the HR rep remarked that she didn’t think it would have been such a successful day without the morning session on the Breakthrough Creativity framework.

We talked about why she thought that was so and came up with the following answers:

  1. The Breakthrough Creativity Profile work helped build more self-awareness.
  2. The Department Head was very open with sharing her results and thus set the stage for the rest of the participants to feel comfortable sharing.
  3. The Team Profile really opened up the conversation.  We not only discussed the actual results but also diverged into other relevant topics.   The open and honest discussion that ensued addressed some issues that were critical to the team’s performance.
  4. There was a lot of laughter during the conversations in the morning which probably added to the success of the session.  The hormones released through laughter loosened everyone up and allowed for even more creative thinking.
  5. Although not everyone had been willing or eager to contribute in the first couple of hours of the session, by the time we got to lunch everyone was pretty relaxed and fully engaged.
  6. The Breakthrough Creativity framework, the talents, and the team profile all seemed to oil the hinges and allow ideas to flow, camaraderie to be heightened, and creative juices to run!

What has been your experience with mission statement exercises?  Have they been as successful as this one was?

Dr. Lynne Levesque is a leadership and creativity consultant based in Boston, Massachusetts. Prior to launching her consulting and training practice, she was a vice president at Bank of America.  She is the author of Breakthrough Creativity: Achieving Top Performance Using the Eight Creative Talents and the Breakthrough Creativity Profile, as well as several cases and articles. Lynne holds a B.A. from Mount Holyoke College, an M.B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley, and an Ed.D. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Lynne will be hosting a free webinar for HRDQ-U on November 11th at 2PM ET. Register Breakthrough Creativity Profileto reserve your spot today.

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