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2017, vol. 14, iss. 1, pp. 207-222
Contradiction between emphasizing creativity in theory and stifling it in practice
John Naisbitt University, Faculty of Culture and Media, Belgrade

emailtmilivojevic@naisbitt.edu.rs
Keywords: creativity; innovation; intrinsic motivation; micromanagement; organization
Abstract
The word 'creativity', like other frequently used and popular words, is at risk of becoming a vague platitude or a slogan devoid of its conceptual determination. The knowledge and understanding of the phenomenon of creativity are not proportional to how much it is affirmed and promoted now days. This is particularly noticeable in work organizations of all kinds. Besides the subjective factors such as the employers' and managers' superficial or inadequate knowledge of what creativity really is, there are objective factors which put pressure on and hinder the creative impulses and processes. Economic, financial and market imperatives such as: fierce competition, short-term goals and deadlines, acceleration of work processes, rationalization, productivism, overall quantification (only measurable parameters and results being taken into account), excessive regulations, tight control systems and the like, contribute to the design of organizations which crush creativity. Some quite widespread management practices and behaviors, especially the so-called intrusive or micromanagement, are often a reaction to these constraints. As for the employees, they internalize all these pressures into strong inner imperatives of (over)achievement. The imposed standard of a constantly high level of motivation, excellence and self-improvement is unsustainable in the long run. The guiding management principle of performing more and better for less (time, resources, energy, leads to the exhaustion of mental and other psychological resources needed for creative ideas to emerge and develop. Creativity involves complex, subtle and dynamic psychosocial mechanisms. Too often the managerial practices and organizational cultures are detrimental to the well known most powerful source of creativity: the intrinsic motivation. Briefly, this article deals with the paradox which lies in the fact that, in theory, so much emphasis is put on creativity and innovation as indispensable assets, while at the same time so much is done to stifle them in practice.
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article language: English
document type: Scientific Paper
DOI: 10.5937/MegRev1701207M
published in SCIndeks: 21/05/2017
Creative Commons License 4.0

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