Home » B822:Creativity, Innovation and Change » Complexity and the unconscious

Complexity and the unconscious

What does it take to flourish in a team?

Flourishing in teams
West M,A., Sacramento, C.A, In ‘Creative Management and Development. Henry, J (2011) pp25-44

Or ‘how to develop team innovative teams’

New ways of doing things. SEE FULL QUOTE (West and Farr, 1990)
Initial creativity leads to innovation.
Innovation is dependent on: (Oldham and Cummings 1980)

For innovation to occur need to consider:

Team task
Group composition
Organisational context
Team processes

Skill variety
Task identity
Task feedback

& Autonomy (Hackman and Oldman, 1980)

Innovative people are:

Think in novel ways
Think globally (see the wood for the trees)
Intellectual and see things in different ways
Analytic abilities
Practical contextual abilities to persuade others
And show openness (Barrick et al., 1998)
+ they have confidence in their abilities.

High degree of drive and motivation
Concerned with achieving excellence (Mumford and Gustafson, 1998)

Innovative people have a high need for freedom, control and discretion in the workplace and appear to find bureaucratic limitations or the exercise of control by managers frustrating. (Barron and Harrington, 1981; West, 1987; West and Rushton, 1989)

1) Ensure the team task is intrinsically motivating
2) Ensure a high level of extrinsic demands as the task develops, so hands off to start but pressure mounting towards the end.
3) Select a team of innovative people
4) Select people with diverse skills and backgrounds
5) Provide organisational rewards for innovation
6) Create a learning and development climate in the organisation
7) Develop a climate for innovation in the organisation
8) Establish team norms for innovation
9) Encourage reflexivity in teams
10) Ensure there is clarity of leadership in the team and that the leadership style is appropriate for encouraging innovation.
11) Manage conflict constructively and encourage minorities to dissent within teams.
12) Don’t just bond … Bridge.

THE ‘whole’ task, its entirety.
Brainstorming away from the everyday.
Later pressures.
Fully integrated team working


Barrack, M,R; Stewart, G,L; Neubert,M,J; Mount,M,K (1998) relating member ability and personality to work-team processes and team effectiveness. journal of applied psychology 83 , 377-91

Barron, F.B and Harrington, D.M (1981) Creativity, Intelligence and Personality in M.R. Rosenweig and L.W.Porter (eds) Annual Review of Psychology, 32, 439-76.

Hackman, J, R and Oldman G,R (1980) Work Redesign. Reading, MA.

Mumford M,D and Gustafson, S,B (1998) Creativity Syndrome: Integration, application and innovation. Psychological Bulletin, 103, 27-43

Oldman, G, R and Cummings, A (1996) Employee Creativity: personal and contextual factors at work. academy of management journal, 39 (3), 607-34

West, M.A (1987) Role Innovation in the World of Work. British Journal of Social Psychology, 26, 305-15.

West, M,A and Farr, J,L (1990) Innovation at work. In M.A.West and J.L.Farr (eds) innovation and creativity at work: Psychological and Organisational Strategies, Chichester, England.

West, M.A and Rushton, R. (1989) Mismatches in work role transitions. journal of occupational Psychology, 62 271-86

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