If you intend to encourage creativity in your Professional Learning Communities then your teams need to be comfortable with new ideas. Sounds easy, but as we know, it's harder than it sounds. People are all to quick to kill ideas. Like a fine wine, ideas need some time.
Here is some insight from the great Paul Williams of Idea Sandbox.
"One key reason new and potentially innovative ideas don't get implemented at companies is because skeptics and scaredy cats kill ideas when they're first proposed. They use killer phrases like: "We've tried that before." and "Yeah, but..."
"Great ideas often sound "wild and crazy" at first. They can go against the established guidelines and the status quo. (And then there are those who are afraid the new idea will put them out of a job). To help give ideas a chance, I've created an Idea Killer BINGO card.
"This will help you to identify when people use killer phrases that nip ideas in the bud before the idea has a chance to grow.
"This card is meant to be used for awareness, rather than played as an actual BINGO game. If in a meeting you have more than one or two of these pop-up... Your team needs professional help. You should stop the meeting immediately because your team probably won't create anything new and meaningful.*
"Your next meeting should be about how your team needs to be less critical, pause before they pounce, and try to build on an idea - see where it can go... Instead of just killing it.
I love Paul's idea and would love
to use the Idea Killer BINGO card in Professional Learning Communities
or team meetings as a tool to get PLCs to give ideas some think time
before killing them off to quickly.
1. Instead of figuring out why an idea won't work, what would happen if your PLC figured out how to make the idea work?
2. When presenting a new idea, what negative reaction would you expect? How can you deflect it?
3. In what way is fear interfering with critical discussions of new ideas? How might you mitigate the fear?
4. How might embracing the creativity in others encourage more creativity in your PLC?
5. What might happen if you told
your PLC that for 5 minutes they have to show how the idea could work
and benefits of it, before they were allowed to attack it?
6. How would changing the context of an idea allow it to be considered more carefully?
7. What are the unintended consequences of "killing" idea to quickly?