Over a dynamic dinner with a group of designers, master storyteller, Stefan Mumaw, author of “Caffeine for the Creative Mind” and “Chasing the Monster Idea”, related the following true tale…
Stefan was playing in a basketball tournament in Anchorage Alaska. The team members were staying at the homes of generous Anchorage residents and Stefan found himself awkwardly trying to make small talk with his host. Noticing the biggest handgun he had ever seen on the top of a china cabinet, Stefan asked his host what he had the gun for.
“See that window in the kitchen door down the hall?”, the host responded. “Go pull back the curtain.”
A little nervous, but intrigued nonetheless, Stefan cautiously approached the door and drew back the curtains. Peering intently through the fog covered glass, Stefan almost jumped back at the sight of 2 huge pulsating nostrils. He looked closer and saw an enormous moose, it’s massive frame perched squarely on the back porch, calmly warming it’s nose on in the inviting kitchen door window.
Walking back and shakily sitting back down on the living room couch he turned to his host who explained, “One day that moose just may figure out that he can bust through that door with not much more than a tap – that’s why I got the gun.”
With only the best of intentions, I’d propose that most in-house designers are like the moose; creative powerhouses who may not recognize their true innovative potential and are pressing their collective noses against a self-imposed glass wall that separates them from the higher-level strategic positions and roles they desire within their companies.
I’d urge anyone for whom this analogy fits, to take stock of their currently hidden creative and strategic problem-solving talents, embrace them and crash through that thin glass wall right into your corporation’s boardroom.