Sounds absurd doesn’t it.
New ideas, thinking out of the box, fresh thinking, originality, etc. these are things we hear continuously and we’re told again and again that businesses want. Creativity is the driving force of positive change. Therefore the creative individual is hailed as a must for any business who wants to get ahead. New ideas are business gold. However, the research and evidence suggests that the reality is slightly different.
A famous study from the university of Pennsylvania showed that most people often dismiss new ideas, because their uncertainty makes us think and thinking too hard makes us uncomfortable. In other words, whilst we desire creativity, we have an overwhelming motivation to reduce uncertainty.
Therefore, what we actually mean is ‘give me something new, but not too new!’
People are attracted to the familiar, so it’s crucial that if you have new ideas you need to try and frame them in ways that seem recognisable, predictable and, dare I say it… safe!
It seems backwards making our creativity seem less creative, but in most businesses its actually necessary if you want your ideas to be accepted and flourish! And whilst you may think making individuals aware of their bias might help overcome the problem, there is such a strong social norm to encourage and back creativity that people are reluctant to admit they have any adverse reaction to creativity.
In conclusion, the challenge in business today is to help organisations recognise and really accept creativity – not just accept those ideas that are more practical and actually fairly unoriginal – but moving out of their comfort zone and embracing creativity and the really ‘new’ ideas.
If you would like help in understanding the bias limitations that exist within your organisation and how to get past them, get in touch with Idarc today.