Halley Suitt on Creativity (gnomdex)

Halley’s talking about creativity and, in particular, "The Creative Leader". How do you identify the creative leader? How do you compensate the creative leader? Are you creating an atmosphere of fun for the culture of your time? Here are some tips from the audience and the discussion overall:

    (1) Give developers control over their space, let them decide when to be in there and when not. Let them design the space.

    (2) Take them all to lunch, away from the office, build trust by opening up a channel.

    (3) Keep teams small (6-8 people) (no larger than you can feed with 2 pizzas) (Werner Vogels comment). Buzz says that there was a Fortune article reporting a recent study that said the optimum team size is 4.6. (Query: how do you get a .6 of a person? Perhaps that's a part-time employee?)

    (4) Listen for whining. When they whine, they’ve lost interest. Swearing is OK, but whining is not.

    (5) Pandora CTO has 3 suggestions: (a) be the first to laugh at yourself; (b) keep telling your developers what the deadline dates are (even though this sounds like a kindergarten teacher; (c) don’t assume that everyone is looking forward to a break – be leery of “giving them a break for awhile” (instead, give them directions and something valuable to work on).

Halley provided some book and reading recommendations. The audience offered some too. Here's some of the recommended titles:

    The Whole New Mind (The MFA is the new MBA)
    The Flight of the Creative Class
    HBR article “Sparking Creativity at Ferrari”
    Fred Brooks “The Mythical Man Month” and an article from 1982 “There is no silver bullet”.
    Paul Graham essay from Hackers & Pinkers book
    The Deadline – book about project management
    “Joel on Software”

Next up is the dude behind FireFox...

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