Friday, January 19, 2007

The Creativity & Innovation Industry

This is my first blog and I've decided to talk about the Creativity & Innovation Industry.

It's a shame that this group doesn't have more cohesion but in my view it is indeed an "industry." It consists of a wide range of people and companies. It encompasses everything from venture capitalists to new age aura readers. In the middle of that spectrum are qualitative researchers who provide "ideation" services, companies like What If and Ideas to Go, and a goodly number of single shingle consultants who offer some form of innovation consulting. I've heard of Creativity Coaches, one here in Chicago I know, Brendan Sullivan, is getting all the work he can handle. There are also the high-priced marquee types like Doug Hall (and nice work on the TV show American Inventor Mr. Eureka Ranch, well done), Clotaire "Gil" Rapaille, and Larry "PR" Keeley of the Doblin Group. Don't take offense Larry, its only jealousy speaking, I am amazed at the good press you generate and the intelligent things you say.

I recently got a resume from a former television anchor -- someone you would know and recognize -- that wants to market herself as a "trained brain." Trained brain is a buzzword for a professional ideator, a paid idea person. Nice work if you can get it! I thought it was a good idea but couldn't tell her much about how to put her skills in front of this wide-ranging and ill-connected group. Herding this group of creative cats is quite a challenge, and nobody is doing it. Wouldn't it be nice if there were an industry wide association? And wouldn't it be nice if it were international?

I believe an international association for creativity and innovation practitioners would help expand the market for our collective offerings by creating greater awareness.

Someday we'll see an ad campaign or some sort of virtual marketing effort for this industry, ala Got Milk.

Got Creativity?