Perspectives, Issues, Research and Practice
Edited by Simon L. Albrecht
Chapter 23: Flow in Work as a Function of Trait Intrinsic Motivation, Opportunity for Creativity in the Job, and Work Engagement
Giovanni B. Moneta Introduction In the past decade or so, creativity has become increasingly important for organizations (Bharadwaj & Menon, 2000; Amabile & Khaire, 2008). Organizational creativity refers to the generation of novel and useful ideas or products within an organization, including processes, procedures and services (for example, Woodman et al., 1993). Individual and team creativity are at the heart of entrepreneurial business whenever a new enterprise is launched or an established business seeks expansion into a new and competitive market (for example, Amabile & Khaire, 2008), and foster other facets of performance such as product quality and financial gain (for example, Huth, 2008). Despite the practical relevance of organizational creativity, managers have been somewhat reluctant in considering the maximization of employees’ creativity as a managerial target. This might be due to three complementary reasons. First, managers tend to believe that employees’ creativity is essentially unmanageable (Amabile & Khaire, 2008). Second, both managers and employees tend to have limited insight into the psychology of creative processes. Finally, managers tend to be concerned with the negative facets of employees’ subjective experience – such as work stress and burnout – while neglecting positive facets – such as flow in work and work engagement – that are key to creative achievement. In the early 1990s, Csikszentmihalyi (1996) investigated through interviews the experiences that 91 outstanding individuals had prior to conceiving novel ideas and seeing them recognized by peers as innovations. Intense and recurrent flow in work emerged as the main theme underlying each innovation across the domains of science, art and...
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