Do You Need Individualism in the Workplace?

In every job I’ve ever had, I’ve always been complimented by the executives over me, employees working with me, and the customers I was trying to please.

I’ve had nearly 40 different jobs in my lifetime—everything from moving company truck driver to real estate loan broker to sales consultant to fraud investigator.

I’ve always received feedback of something along the lines of, “I’ve dealt with a lot of people who were doing what you’re doing but none of them did it quite with your artistic flair.” The words “artistic” and “flair” came up most often. Sometimes together, sometimes one or the other.

I remember one gentleman when I was delivering lumber for building homes. He called the owner of the lumber company and told him he’d never seen a truck driver drop lumber off a truck so elegantly—landing on the ground just as it had looked on the truck, nothing broken, and all neatly stacked.

What can I say. I’ve always subscribed to the Old English proverb: “Any job worth doing, is worth doing well.” That and the fact that having been a stand-up comic, I always tried to entertain while doing any job.

My motto is: Be an individual. Be creative. And you shall be rewarded.

And for the majority of the things I’ve done in my life that has been the case. I’ve been lucky enough to have been allowed to exhibit my genius trait of Individualism in almost every job I’ve ever had.

Maybe one of the reasons I’ve been allowed to do so is that I’ve always increased the income of the companies I’ve worked for.

For example, I caught so many people as a fraud investigator that the insurance adjusting company I worked for grew so much that they had to hire more investigators at all of their other branches.

In thinking about the subject of this article, I wondered if creativity and Individualism (doing things the way you think they should be done) would be profitable for a company. My own experience with it notwithstanding.

And when I use the genius trait of Curiosity, I go to the Internet to find people smarter than myself. This time, I found a PhD.

Professor Jack Goncalo of Gies College of Business at the University of Illinois says one of the reasons he’s most interested in studying creativity is that it generates profit. He graciously consented to be quoted for this article.

Here’s Professor Goncalo from a video he made while at Cornell University, “The problem is that people don’t really know what creativity is, and so it’s dismissed unfairly. People think of it as only paradigm-shifting, radical ideas that are going to destroy everything we know and be very costly to manage.”

“A creative idea is one that is both novel and useful or appropriate to solving a problem which is exactly why I’m so interested in it. They’re ideas which take us in a new direction but are also appropriate to solving a problem.”

“You can be creative in the way you solve problems every day. And creativity matters in every single job.”

“Every job can be approached with that in mind.”

Professor Goncalo’s research confirmed for me what I’ve experienced in my own life. And that is that being an individual and being creative adds to and helps the bottom line. Like he said creativity isn’t a radical idea. It can be small, but it’s smallness doesn’t make it less significant.

Using Individualism, one can make the mundane interesting. One can make their own life and the lives of others better. One can improve a company’s business.

As a CEO, one would do well to hire creative individuals and be creative yourself. Creative people, especially the ones that exhibit the other genius traits, make the best team members and collaborators.

Individualism and the other 23 genius qualities are what we deliver at Genius Inc. Our Genius Culture Courses help give an enthusiastic, genius boost to your company’s culture.

In a few words, we make work fun. Be an individual. Be creative. Be a genius.

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