How do creativity and innovation happen?

“We need to return to the office for creativity and innovation to happen” some CEOs assert today.

“We’ve seen two years’ worth of digital transformation in two months” said IBM CEO Satya Nardella, a year ago.

So what’s going on here?

Clearly, creativity and innovation can happen outside of the office. In the year since Nardella’s comment, we’ve seen change and adaption on an unparalleled scale in peacetime.

So if you’re still arguing that the office essential for that to happen, why is it? What’s its contribution?

To answer those questions, you have to understand how innovation happens and what conditions are necessary for creativity in your organisation.

And my bet is that most organisations haven’t got a clue.

Instead, they have relied on bunging everyone in the same place and relying on luck. Every now and then they may do things to enhance serendipity but mostly they leave it to chance.

And then they’ve told themselves a fairy story about what’s going on.

Believing in fairy stories is cute in a child but it’s fatal in an organisation. And never more so than now.

Because if you didn’t understand how it worked before COVID, what chance have you got of making it work in the world after COVID?

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