Interview with Harald Lepisk on activating creativity and motivation

BestJobs.ro interviewed me about creativity and motivation – here´s some of the insights.

Tell us about a project you were involved in and you really enjoyed.

Recently we had an international seminar with 130 young participants and we got all of them to build big models of 12 future villages out of everything that was available in nature and stuff we got from office supplies. We video-interviewed their presentations and used it as visionary input for county development organization´s strategy.

In the beginning it felt impossible to have it all organized, yet actually it was fantastic to see, how we got the team working and how this form of conversational activity opened young people to share their vision. Great success for the client and for the participants.

I just love when my clients stretch me, it makes me feel alive. How can you inspire your clients to positively stretch you more?

Can you please define “Inspiring Creativity Trainer”? Why is creativity important in leadership or entrepreneurship?

The way I see it:

  1. Inspiring is about making the positive impact.
  2. Creativity is about the ability to produce novel and useful solutions.
  3. Trainer is about creating an environment where people can learn and grow.

So Inspiring Creativity Trainer is a person who creates an inspiring environment where people could tap their creative potential.

In leadership and entrepreneurship creativity enables you to connect resources and challenges to create opportunities. In entrepreneurship it enables you to create something great out of “nothing”. In leadership it enables you to connect the dreams of your team-members with the current assignments in hand.

Imagine having this belief:”Whatever happens, I will find a way out.” – what would you really do if you had this belief? That´s the value of creativity.

What qualities do you feel a successful manager should have?

In my opinion, the most important role of a manager is creating and keeping the big picture – systems thinking. By using this big picture one needs to figure out what needs to be done and manage talents of team-members to do it.

Good tool for keeping this big picture is for example mind mapping – it enables you to connect and categorize ideas and opportunities.

Who is your role model? What motivates you?

When I was on my second year at the university, studying economics, I took an academic relief for one year to figure out who I am and what I´m good at. I started working through all kinds of personal development materials and took courses in psychology. My favourite back then was Anthony Robbins, because he made important things simple.

Nowadays I only take some specific elements from great people. I have my list of “superheroes” – people who are really great in some specific things. I lend their brains for tackling problems by asking myself “How would x solve this situation?”.

My main motivator: curiosity and hunger for being better. Asking myself: “Can I get a little better today?” and getting the “Yes, I can!” answer.

How should one keep each member of the team involved and motivated?

Coaching. Asking the right questions to direct the team-member to figure out what they really want and how to get it from this project.

For example:

What do you want to be remembered by after finishing this project? How do you want to feel after finishing this task? What do you need to do to achieve this result? What is the first step you need to take today to get it going?

How do you decide which tasks take priority when organizing a complete
project?

I figure out what are the pre-conditions for right things to happen – usually there are some specific things that catalyze other processes. I ask myself how can I apply my best talents and strengths to start those pre-conditional processes.

If it is a project with volunteer team members, then I usually ask what is currently important in their work-life and which part of our project is related to their other activities. If it is full time employees, then I focus on their talents and strengths + areas they want to grow in.

To be honest, sometimes I simply do what I would love to do instead of doing the “right thing”. The funny thing is that sometimes doing what you love to do turns out to be the right thing. But not always.

How would you react if this was a job interview and we would tell you that you are you got the job as a manager of a team that lacks motivation?

I´d probably do as follows:

  1. Figure out what is my personal passion about this business (clarifying the related pleasure and pain).
  2. Through coaching I would clarify what do the team members really dream of (what they would like to feel and how they can get that feeling).
  3. I ´d involve all members into conversation about creating a compelling vision of where we would want to be and how to get there (using for example world cafe method).
  4. I´d use creative thinking to connect our dreams with the expected outcomes of the company (for example “forced connections ” creativity technique).

In other words – I´d create an environment where team-members connect things they´re good at, what they love to do and what the world needs. For mapping those 3 key elements for yourself find out more from a video instruction.

Be Better!

Meet Harald.

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