Fostering the Implementation of Creative Ideas in Organizations
Edited by Miha Škerlavaj, Matej Černe, Anders Dysvik and Arne Carlsen
Chapter 3: The flow of creativity for idea implementation
More than 60 years ago Levitt found that being creative is not enough and that ‘ideas are useless unless used’ (Levitt, 1963, p. 79). Despite increasing recognition of the importance of innovation at work, studies of how to foster innovation are still relatively rare (Baer, 2012). Furthermore, little progress has been made in understanding how psychological factors affect idea implementation (Anderson et al., 2014). Thus, the aim of this chapter is to provide insight into the role of psychological factors in transforming individuals’ intentions to implement an idea into actual idea implementation. Building on flow theory (Csikszentmihalyi, 1997b), we offer a new theoretical perspective on how to foster idea implementation at work. Adding to our current knowledge, we propose that individuals who have flow experiences will be more inclined to implement creative ideas (Baumann and Scheffer, 2011). Flow is defined as ‘a state in which people are so involved in an activity that nothing else seems to matter; the experience itself is so enjoyable that people will do it even at a great cost, for the sheer sake of doing it’ (Csikszentmihalyi, 1991, p. 4). Thus, we propose that flow experience may be an important factor that stimulates implementation of creative ideas.
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