Interesting piece from the NYT Opinion section this weekend. I’ve spent the last five years working in a creative environment alone, and I have to agree that is where my brain works best. I relish the idea of sitting quietly with my headphones on, because that is when my brain can wander and create connections that didn’t exist. I remember being part of a big brainstorming session at my last job, and it was a total failure. It was about something that I cared deeply about, was well funded, and was something that could really have created a great deal of name recognition inside and outside of the institution. The problem was we all just sat there staring at each other, with nothing to say. I was brought to the meeting because I was the idea guy, and all I could do was sit and stare blankly, and wish I were back at my desk thinking about this on my own.
The problem of course, is that total isolation puts us in a vacuum, where we have nothing to feed the creative beasts. People’s feedback is important to making creative ideas a reality or shutting them down before they get too far down the road of maturing into a bad idea.
I’m at this new job where I think the balance exists. Time will tell, but I love the ability to be creative, to think beyond the boundaries of conventional technology in my own quiet little world. But there are also these moments where we all spontaneously stop what we are doing and share our ideas, and I’m excited about that too.
Anyway, I think Cain takes too long to get to that part of the piece, but I think how this Groupthink works best. The Lite version is for me.
I wonder it the Bud Lite “Tastes great…less filling” campaign was a product of groupthink or just one guy in his cubicle?