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Welcome to the world of “Creative Partnership”

Culture

Creative partnership sounds very much like a marketing or religious slogan, the promise of a better world where “creativity” mingles with altruistic behaviours “partnership”.  Both words “creative” and “partnership” trigger positive feelings in our mind. They make a promising combination.

Creative refers to the world of Creation which is after all the domain of the Gods.

Partnership refers to collusion, empathy, altruistic and social behaviours (as opposed to egoistic or selfish conducts).

The conference is about the proposal of partnering with people who practice the work of creation with a view to changing your organisation. “Creative partnership” may turn into “successful partnerships”.

– Success may be measurable in productivity gains and financial results,
– in improved social relations within an enterprise,
– in better communication on an organisation’s values,
– In product development and innovation.

Every business is confronted with these fundamental questions:

– Improving the work environment (relationship between employees – with management).
– The identity of a company – what does it stand for as a collective project?
– The capacity to defy routines and increase motivation.
– The capacity to develop group wisdom through more social interactions and social learning, which remain the best engine to spread a work ethic.

But why partnership?  All human and behavioural sciences show that human beings are not very rational and are still very much beset by emotions and group influence.  So why not shape our behaviour at work with activities that stimulate better social interactions such as engaging in artistic related activities – dancing, painting, singing, drawing (so called creative activities).

After all achieving cooperation or partnership is an essential element of success in life as well as in business activities.  However stimulating cooperation is a main challenge within an organisation:

– How to increase cooperation patterns in an organisation?
– How to promote group solidarity?
– How to make the social experience in a group rewarding for the individual as well as the company?

What about creative partnership?

Creative partnership is about associating the world of art, artists, creators and artistic or cultural institutions with sectors that are traditionally unconnected such as:

– Administration
– Businesses
– Industry
– Educational establishments
– Employees
– Management

Our technical and specialized world makes it difficult to bring in the unexpected and the new or original.  Industrial and management processes, productivity gain objectives have all established dangerous routines and processes to address issues and look at things.

There are other models.

Consider and let’s be inspired:

– Copernic and Leonardo da Vinci were polymaths – capable of science and arts.   Marrying both gives excellence in innovation.

– Some successful businesses have made creative partnership a dogma – Apple (think different) with a prominent role given to design, artists and culture in the definition of technology products, in the development of the company’s DNA.  It is evident that technology associated with meanings, aesthetics and entertainment gives great business results.

There are tools to encourage and enable creative partnerships.  There are other ways of addressing a problem in your business, in your organization.

How?

–  By calling on the disruptive function of art and artists to apprehend things differently,

  • to challenge the routine, to take the risk of improving things,
  • to change social interactions in the company ,
  • to innovate in product development,
  • to promote creative thinking and lead by example,
  • to disrupt or question processes.

 

– We know art can change the face of a city.
– The power of poetry through graffiti or wall painting can give a different feel to our streets.
– Art changes visions and perceptions by provoking social interactions or giving meanings.
– Art as a transformative power (urban regeneration) can question our consumption patterns and ways of life.
– Art procures emotions (not necessarily agreeable) – emotions can tie people together through the sharing of a common experience.
– Art questions our relation to space, to objects, to places.
– Art and artists also question our relation with authority.
– Art creates value – without destroying anything (apart from our illusions may be or our conformism).

Creative partnerships change social interactions in enterprises, getting people to connect in their work places, thus allowing:

– To communicate differently within and outside the company
– To lead and manage differently (leadership)
– To give a sense of purpose to an organization
– To develop new products or services

But also (and this may coincide with a personal objective as an entrepreneur):

To enable art to reach a wider society (not reserved only for the elite),
To support the art and artists

You cannot predict the future of your company but you can imagine it

Creative partnership is about the means to trigger imagination in your company that can transform your company into a place for creation or a place capable of valuing new ideas.

Open your mind – encourage disruption, transversality (through a dialogue between art and industry – enable both to nourish each other). It is worth taking this risk as creative partnership may result in a more efficient organization and a better work atmosphere.

An abundance of evidence now exists to show that creative partnership contributes to cohesion and social interactions within organizations.  It creates new solidarity, enables empathy to develop between people. It is not excluded that the partnership may turn sour or lead to undesired results but the promise is that the partnership will be creative! For better or worse.

Entrepreneurship is very much about taking risks and find ways of doing things differently from competitors.

We call on creative partnership to stimulate sharing, empathy and social understanding .  This is an opportunity to hear about other processes and methods to stimulate changes in organization.  It is alternative medicine to the traditional Arthur Andersen and KPMG consultancy services (which incidentally are turning more and more to culture and behavioural / anthropological knowledge to advise clients).

Philippe Kern

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