Originally posted on the Inc. website by Marla Tabaka, excerpts below:
All work and no play? You may be missing an opportunity to tap into your true genius. For America to maintain its place as a leading world economy, we need to get back to our broad-based entrepreneurial roots. Creativity can be considered a numbers game: When more of us are generating creative ideas, better ideas are discovered, and we need our best ideas now more than ever.
Duke University professor and author Carl Nordgren says that a creatively entrepreneurial revolution has been brewing for years. Even corporate leadership is calling for this revolution, as is evident by the results of a study of 1,500 CEOs by IBM. It found the No. 1 employee-trait they valued to successfully navigate an increasing complex world is creativity.
“It’s basic to the human condition to be creatively entrepreneurial, to see problems as opportunities, and to see those opportunities as a chance to make things better,” says Nordgren. “If you spend 30 minutes with a four-year-old you will be reminded of how natural it is to use imagination and creativity to navigate this world. There is all kinds of research that shows how inherently creative we are.”
Studies show 98% of us are born to this world as creative geniuses at divergent thinking, but that only 3% of us score as creative geniuses at divergent thinking by the time we are 23 years old.
“We’ve been deceiving ourselves for centuries in believing that creativity is a gift to the common few,” says Nordgren. “Too many of us allow those qualities to lie dormant, but we are born creatively entrepreneurial beings.”
In his quest to bring America back to its entrepreneurial roots, Nordgren has been participating in this creatively entrepreneurial revolution for years now and has recently offered it a name: Creative Populism. The Creative Populist movement is about each and every one of us cultivating our ability to be creatively entrepreneurial.
For the CEO, it means nurturing a culture where the age-old battle of the creatives vs. the suits comes to an end so that developing creatively entrepreneurial talent throughout the organization becomes a top priority. For the individual, it means intentionally developing the qualities we all need to identify opportunity and build value and create change from the bottom up.
Nordgren has been helping individuals and businesses get back to their entrepreneurial roots through his business advisory services as well as through TEDx talks and guest lecturers at universities and businesses throughout the nation. He has also written Welcome to the Creative Populist Revolution, which serves as a guide book for those determined to build their creatively entrepreneurial abilities.