Tag Archive - creativity


The Rules of Innovation

One of the best ways to learn as a church leader is to get outside of the “church-world” and learn from other industries. That kind of exposure challenges your thinking in new ways. It exposes you to different problems that you aren’t facing as well as new solutions that churches aren’t even thinking about.

The other day I had the opportunity to learn from a friend of mine who works in a different industry than the church I serve in. He works for a fast growing, global, world class company that’s known for innovation.

As I listened to him describe his company’s approach to innovation there we some core concepts that were counter intuitive that really stood out to me.

First…Master the Standard

You don’t have the right to innovate until you’ve mastered the existing standard, because otherwise you degrade the standard. In order to innovate you have to begin with a baseline standard. That starting point allows you to begin to improve things, be creative and innovate. In a church you may have a standard way of doing things like checking in kids, new families, or following up on guests. You may have standard expectations in regard to the quality of the worship band, lighting, sound or even the percentage of attenders in a group or engaged in a volunteer team. Innovation in those instances would mean mastering the standard, whatever that is, and then trying new things to improve upon it.

Hyper Standardization AND a Free for All are both Bad for Innovation

Both over standardization and a wild west, no holds barred approach squelch innovation. Innovation for the sake of innovation is a waste of time. There’s plenty of opportunity to innovate against a problem. The best innovations are always for the sake of guests or customers and make things simpler not more complicated.

How it Really Works: 

1. Communicate BEFORE you Innovate
Before you start improving upon the standard always communicate up to your direct report. No boss likes to be surprised and you may find that your boss has different priorities for your time than what you want to innovate.

2. Define the Period of Time that you’ll Run the Test
Be clear about how long you’re going to test this new innovative idea as well as the potential scope of impact.

3. Evaluate Real Results
Conduct an autopsy on the test you ran. What were the net results? Look at both the data and the anecdotes. If it’s not significantly better than the standard, then ditch the idea…it’s not worth chasing.

4. Preserve what Worked and Pivot away from what didn’t
Simply put, have the courage to turn away from ideas that didn’t work, even if you liked the idea, even if it was a good idea. If it didn’t work, then don’t waste your time working it. Preserve what did work significantly better and either work to implement it everywhere or continue to improve upon it.

Posted in Leadership


Leadership Summit 2017: Fredrik Haren

Fredrik Haren is a business creativity expert who has authored nine books, including The idea Book – credited as on of “The 100 Best Business Books of All Time.” He is a global speaker who has been invited to speak to leaders in more than 60 countries on six continents on the importance of creativity in solving problems. Recognizing how challenging this is, Haren provides practical steps to help individuals and organizations become more creative.

  • Is creativity important in your job? 98% of people think they it is
  • Do you think you are creative? 45% people think they are
  • Do you think your company is doing enough to develop creativity in its employees? 2% of people think it is
  • There is no correlation between creative confidence and actual creativity
  • Ideas = one person takes 2 formerly known things and combines them in a new way
  • We cannot create out of nothing
  • Creativity = a person takes knowledge + information and combining them in a new way
  • We spend a lot of time talking about knowledge and information but not the “+”
  • The average business/management book only sells 3,000 copies
  • Creativity has never been more important than now…the speed of innovation is getting faster and we need to keep up
  • Idea-perception: the ability to see that the world is changing
  • The book is not dead because of the ebook. People used to read books on the bus, on the plane, on vacation. Where do people read books now?
  • We didn’t go from book to ebook, we went from book to social and digital media (mobile devices)
  • The problem: Human beings are not very good at change
  • Just because a man says something very confident doesn’t mean he’s right it just means he’s confident
  • The people you are leading are stuck doing things the way they do because they’re doing it the way they were told to do it
  • As leaders your job is to make your people more creative
  • You don’t do it by talking about creativity or teaching creativity, you do it by doing creative things as a leader…they are inspired to be creative
  • What is the most creative thing you can do as a leader?
  • We are never closer to God than when we have a really, really, good idea.

Posted in Leadership


4 steps to effective vision casting

An old Japanese proverb says, “Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare.” Many churches are stuck not because they don’t have a dream or a vision, but rather because they don’t know how to break that dream down into tangible implementable steps that build culture and drive the church towards a preferred future. Then when stuckness begins to settle in, the leaders in the room start doing what they are wired to do, they lead. But when there is no clearly articulated unifying vision all of those leaders leading the direction that they think is best turns into a nightmare in a hurry. Below are 4 steps you can take to be more effective in casting vision and avoid that nightmare scenario:

Continue Reading…

Posted in Leadership


life on the run

What if Dr. Seuss told the story of Jonah? It might sound a little bit like this…

The Lord’s word to Jonah came quite unexpected:
“Go down to Nineveh. You’ve been elected.”

But he didn’t go. Instead he ran right away.
Listen up, don’t you mimic. It will ruin your day!

Cause, you can’t run away from the Lord. Jonah knew it.
In this series we will find out what occurs when you do it!

So proud of the work that the Creative Arts Team at Sun Valley Community Church is doing!

Posted in Creative Arts


top 10 reasons why ideas fail

Only one in ten new products succeed. That’s only a 10% success rate! What if only 10% of the hires you made worked out? What if your financial reports were only accurate 10% of the time? What if your local pizza joint only got your pizza right 10% of the time? You’d find a different place to buy a pizza wouldn’t you? Nine out of ten new products fail because the ideation process that the majority of companies and organizations use is broken.

In their book, “Lightning in a Bottle: The Proven System to Create New Ideas and Products that Work,” authors David Minter and Michael Reid detail why current ideation tools fail and provide a proven 7 step system that you can follow to better ideas. Below are the top 10 reasons they’ve identified why most ideas fail:


Continue Reading…

Posted in Creative Arts, Leadership
Page 1 of 212»