At the individual level, numerous motivation-related factors have been identified as drivers of creative production.

Key motivational factors affecting innovation :

1. Intrinsic versus extrinsic motivation   
     Intrinsic motivation is a key driver of innovation. Extrinsic interventions such as rewards and evaluations appear to adversely affect innovation motivation because they appear to redirect attention from “experimenting” to following rules or technicalities or performing a specific task. Furthermore, apprehension about evaluation appears to divert attention away from the innovation because individuals become reluctant to take risks since these risks maybe negatively evaluated. Contrarily, in order to be creative, individuals need freedom to take risks, play with ideas and expand the range of considerations from which solutions may emerge.

2. Challenging individuals   
     Open-ended, non-structured tasks engender higher creativity then narrow jobs. This occurs by virtue of the fact that people respond positively when they are challenged and provided sufficient scope to generate novel solutions. It appears that it is not the individual who lacks creative potential but it is the organizational expectations that exert a primary debilitating effect upon the individual’s inclination to innovate.

3. Skills and knowledge   
     Creativity is affected by relevant skills such as expertise, technical skills, talent, etc. However, such domain-related skills can have both positive as well as negative consequences. Positively, knowledge enhances the possibility of creating new understanding. Negatively, high domain-relevant skills may narrow the search heuristics to learn routines and thereby constrain fundamentally new perspectives. This can lead to functional “fixedness”.

Source: “Culture and climate for innovation” by Pervaiz K. Ahmed, European Journal of Innovation Management


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1 comment

  1. Uh, just thought I’d pop by and say hello – your previous layout was slicker. I like the Cancer Omega quote though – which is why I use it on the egroup. Take care 🙂

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