I never really though I'd learn much about creativity and design thinking from a cartoon character until I read Robert Fabricant's essay posted on Fast Company's blog, Frog Design: 3 Things Wile E. Coyote Teaches Us About Creative Intelligence. The essay does a fantastic job of helping to examine and explain just how we bring out creativity in one another. I think it's incredibly relevant to our firm and the A/E profession in general. Those design challenges, different ideas and unique perspectives that make up our profession can help drive us to be more creative.
Fabricant shows us how we can push each other to be more creative by examining the relationship between Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner. He argues, 'Would Wile E. be anywhere near as creative without Road Runner? Would his inventions emerge out of his own faculties unprompted or only in response to a situation? His relationship with Road Runner is a dynamic that constantly pushes him farther, faster and (unfortunately in more cases) higher than he imagined.'
Think about this as you work on new projects. Engage with as many fellow teammates, clients and colleagues in the profession as you can, whether they think like you do or not. Responding to challenges and seeking diverse views make for the kind of mentality and attitude that will drive us forward. It's those collaborations that can increase our firm and profession's overall creativity quotient.
Fabricant sums it up with, 'Creativity emerges out of relationships; it's the tension between different ideas and perspectives and so it is risky to define it as an ability that we inherently possess.'
Don't shy away from the tension of different ideas and perspectives. Seek them out, elaborate and strive for creative solutions to our challenging design opportunities.
Watch some Wile E. for inspiration.