Creative Acts for Curious People | Stanford Design School Executive Sarah Stein Greenberg on Christopher Lochhead’s Follow Your Different

Check out the Follow Your Different episode page

Key Takeaways

  • “Curiosity embodies what is exciting about creativity. No matter what you make, you get to learn something new.” – Sarah Stein Greenberg
    • Society needs to accept more unconventional approaches to success, more roads to act on curiosity
  • “There is a whole new era of what it looks like to think into the future about the implications of your creative work, design choices, or business decisions” – Sarah Stein Greenberg
    • The transition from a physical to a digital world, companies bear responsibility for transparency and foresight when it comes to product design and business decisions
    • The implications of building a wooden chair are pretty straightforward. Facebook, not so much (for example).
    • We must attempt to fully understand and empathize with our business/consumer value trade-offs
  • Useful reflection framework: What -> So what -> Now what
  • “Thinking about thinking is the most important kind of thinking” – Christopher Lochhead
    • Understanding how you learn is important for continuous learning

Intro

The Value of Reflection

  • “Reflection is the underappreciated partner of action” – Sarah Stein Greenberg
    • Reflection framework: What -> So what -> Now what
      • Finding everything that happened
      • What did everything mean, why is it important
      • Evaluate if it is something to act and improve on
    • The quality of your reflections will improve and become more actionable following this detail-oriented process
    • Good reflection practices come from constant field research and experimentation
  • The Covid-19 pandemic caused us to face a lot of ‘forced reflection’ – moments of reflection or pursuits that we otherwise wouldn’t have had
    • Sarah is optimistic about how this period of time will shape this generation’s interpretation of life’s value – whether that means spending more time with family and/or pursuing that creative dream

Metacognition

  • “Thinking about thinking is the most important kind of thinking” – Christopher Lochhead
    • Metacognition is the technical term for this
    • Sarah believes it should be embedded at the heart of our education system
      • Knowing how you learn is the key to lifelong knowledge
      • Sarah sees a potential shift in the education system, creating a model for ongoing opportunities for creatives to explore rather than a limiting 4-year degree as a young adult
        • “open-loop university” – the possibility for individuals to explore a creative venture at any point in their life through continuous education

State of the Design Industry

  • The Design industry is in a major period of technological influence
    • The digital revolution
    • Artificial Intelligence – designing with algorithms and biology
    • Understanding how design and data come together
  • “There is a whole new era of what it looks like to think into the future about the implications of your creative work, design choices, or business decisions” – Sarah Stein Greenberg
    • It is easier to predict the internal and external outcomes of building a wooden chair, but with products like Facebook, we don’t fully understand the long term effects of the evolving digital ecosystem
    • Mischievous materials – design mediums that continue to evolve and change without accurate prediction
      • Not saying we should avoid them, but long-term design effects need to be sufficiently researched
      • Need greater transparency and better foresight in design decisions
  • We have not fully figured out the value trade-offs in the design industry
    • The debate around digital privacy for example
      • Ethical evaluation systems (your ethical compass) are meant to be constantly improved – a difficult balance of profit incentive and respect for consumer empathy
  • Native Digitals – people entering adulthood and professional settings have grown up in a majority digital world with limited analog products

Creativity

  • “Curiosity embodies what is exciting about creativity. No matter what you make, you get to learn something new.” – Sarah Stein Greenberg
    • We as a society are in need of more unconventional approaches, more roads to act on curiosity
  • Creativity can grow anywhere but your environment can certainly give you more structure
    • Silicon Valley for example
  • How do we avoid bureaucratic tendencies that limit creativity within our teams and business?
    • Have clearly defined team dynamics – everyone is self-aware of their creative ability
      • Invites a more efficient and positive collaboration effort
Christopher Lockhead's Follow Your Different : , , , ,
Notes By Drew Waterstreet

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