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What Facebook Has Learned About Motivation in the Modern Workplace

In our most recent Creative Confidence Series chat, IDEO U Dean Suzanne Gibbs Howard sat down with Brynn Harrington, Director of People Growth at Facebook, to discuss the question, what’s truly motivating to people in the modern workplace? They also explored the topics of a recent Harvard Business Review article Brynn co-authored: The 3 Things Employees Really Want: Career, Community, Cause.

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When Are You at Your Best as a Leader?

Reflective self-awareness is the entry point to creative leadership. Being comfortable with not knowing the answers, learning from failure, and collaborating with others different from yourself are essential to creativity, and they all involve a healthy dose of self-awareness. Here are two actionable ways to put yourself in a reflective mode, and to help you discover the role you were meant to play, in your career and as a leader.

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Why Leadership is Not About Having All the Answers

As Tim Brown says, old school models of leadership are not enough anymore. Top-down mandates and telling people what to do doesn’t lead to the creativity and innovation that allows modern companies to make an impact. Instead, leadership is about generating, embracing, and executing bold ideas—”even when the path is not clear.” And that all starts with asking questions.

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An Activity to Help You Find Inspiration Outside Your Context

One of the best ways to get inspired is to look outside your context. When working on new design challenges, IDEO designers often use analogous inspiration to gain fresh perspective. For example, emergency room doctors can get insights about organizing their medical supplies by spending time with a Nascar pit crew and an airline employee might get ideas about check-in by observing a hotel front desk.

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Ways Design Can Help Educators Create Change

Teachers are the innovators education has been waiting for, and design thinking can help them activate their own creativity and solve the biggest challenges in education today. In our most recent Creative Confidence Series chat, Coe sat down with with Sandy Speicher, Managing Director of IDEO’s education practice and a strategic adviser to the K-12 Lab Network at the Stanford d.school, to discuss design thinking in education and how teachers can be powerful change agents for schools and education as a whole.

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3 Myths of Creativity & Ways to Overcome Creative Blocks

Even just five years ago, in many companies, only some people had permission to be creative. But that’s changing—quickly. Creativity isn’t only important in fields like design and advertising, but in law, finance, and even medicine. A reliance on multidisciplinary teams means that everyone is expected to dream up novel and game-changing ideas. And as more jobs become automated, creativity as a skill will be more important than ever. It’s the tool everyone can use to break patterns, generate new ideas, and make big leaps.

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