Review by Choice Review
This volume contains cutting-edge research on collaboration and innovation, two vital business activities, with a mind to optimizing them. Thompson (Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern Univ.) considers focused, independent work to be very important, particularly when combined with intensive, structured team interaction. The first chapter, "Debunking Myths about Creativity," provides counterintuitive insights, such as how selfish people focused on their own interests are more creative than people with greater concern for others. A similarly useful insight is that collaboration should not be the norm but rather the exception, so that when it occurs it is thoughtful and deliberate. Several frameworks are provided for increasing creativity in teams, such as the Creative Collaboration Assessment Inventory, and the development of brainstorming rules to "catalyze the creative effort and improve performance." Thompson also offers advice about using disorder to increase creative productivity in teams (introducing conflict, strategies for providing stimulating meeting contexts, etc.). Additional related strategies discussed include building a heterogeneous (diverse) team to foster creativity at the cost of increased conflict, and the usefulness of not having a set time for group meetings. Ken Robinson's Out of Our Minds: Learning to Be Creative (2nd ed., 2011) offers a wider scope for fostering creativity. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduate through professional collections. C. Wankel St. John's University, New York
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