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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Businesses are stifling creativity, former MP claims

Creativity and innovation goes begging in business sometimes because those poised to make the breakthrough are regarded as rebels or mavericks.

That was the view of former Lib Dem MP Lembit Opik who believes that these 'rebels' can act as a challenge to the old form of thinking rather than being a destructive threat.

Opik, former training and development manager for moving consumer goods firm Proctor & Gamble, has teamed up with HR company Leadenhall Consulting to help businesses understand the differences between a troublemaker and a pathfinder.

"There are huge opportunities for business creativity and innovation which go begging because those best placed to make breakthrough progress are sometimes regarded as 'rebels' or 'mavericks', he told TJ.

"Such individuals tend to have a hard time in established institutions because they frighten the horses.  However, they also see things that others don't.  Mavericks can be the bridge from the past to the future, because they dare to wade across rivers of conventional thought.  

"Our new course, Rebel with a Cause, is dedicated to helping institutional environments understand the difference between a troublemaker and a pathfinder.  We hope that, by providing objective tools to manage such people effectively, energy which causes internal friction will instead create step change improvements in how things get done.

He added: "In this context, 'rebellion' against the norms is really just a challenge to old thinking and can be a positive force instead of a destructive threat.  That's representative of the kind of approach I' m working on at Leadenhall Consulting.  And what works for the financial services industry will very probably work in other sectors too."


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