Bringing Our Creative Self to Work
Leadership Coach, Front of Room Leader and Systemic Change Guide

What if your people brought their full creative selves to work?

What if they brought a CAN-DO attitude to challenges and setbacks?

What if everyone was open to notice and share opportunities for the benefit of the whole organisation?

What if customer service people, product developers and controllers co-created with ease?

Creativity at the workplace is a game changer. And the caveat is this:

People can only bring their creative selves to work if they can bring the rest of themselves to. Only when we are whole, can we be creative. 

As we leave the personal at the office door, we leave the source of our full self there to. And with it: we park our creativity outside.

In an interview with Krista Tippett on ON BEING, former venture capitalist and leadership development coach Jerry Colonna points out that we unconsciously bring our childhood patterns into work. We recreate our past experiences, and our colleagues and circumstances help us to relive them.

In short, we replay our childhood drama all the time.

As we do this unconsciously, for some of us this leads to avoiding conflict at all cost, whilst it leads others seek conflict. The preference depends on our successful strategy in childhood.

On a large scale, our unresolved issues lead to toxic workplaces.

On a small scale, they make individuals miserable, no matter how high or low their status or salaries.

The work of a leadership development coach is therefore to make the unconscious conscious.

We shine a light on reactive patterns, the awareness of which is all it needs to be at choice: Choice to grow into the person and the leader you want to be. Choice to create what delights and fulfills you.

And this is why allowing honest conversation and feelings into our work places is vital:

On the other side of an honest conversation lies co-creating the workplace, the products, and the customer relationships that we desire, that we can be proud of.

Try this structure from non-violent communication for bringing up an uneasy topic with a colleague in full consciousness of your inner process and the ability to differentiate between facts and what you have made up about them in your head:

  • I observed this. (You came late.)

  • This is what this triggers in me. (I take this as a lack of respect for our work, and it makes me angry.)

  • This is what I need from you. (I need you to take our project seriously.)

  • And this is my request. (Please come on time, or let me know in advance when that’s not possible for you.)

This way of communicating in full responsibility for your reaction allows the other person to take responsibilty for their action. They might have good reason for being repeatedly late, and so far did not feel safe to bring it up, so they tried hard, but failed more often than not at being punctual. As you have opened an honest conversation, you can now both align around what works best for both of you and your project.

The reward of courageously honest conversations is that everyone can concentrate their energy on being productive.

At Choose Leadership we help you make honest conversations part of your healthy, functional organisational structure.

For leadership coaching and developement, get in touch

You might also like…

Making Difficult Conversations Easier
Making Difficult Conversations Easier

I was recently working with a group of Senior Researchers, Post-docs and Laboratory Managers from across Europe. The topic: difficult conversations. A popular topic for leaders, new and well seasoned. What makes a conversation difficult? That’s partially individual,...

Stop Downloading – Start Listening
Stop Downloading – Start Listening

I recently wrote about the challenges that leaders face when attempting to listen generatively. We spend too much time downloading (to reconfirm what we already know, i.e. not really listening) or listening factually (to confirm or disconfirm what you already know,...

Vows and Forgiveness
Vows and Forgiveness

David Whyte’s 1996 poem, All the True Vows, from The House of Belonging, calls us forth into the world. Its first line, “All the true vows are secret vows”, poses an inquiry for leaders: What are the secret vows you have sworn? These vows are no idle covenants. They...

Share This