We’ve heard that phrase all our lives, but few people ever heed the wisdom embedded within those four small words. I’m in New York City this week, winding down what has been a very intensive boot camp for leadership and frontline employees.
In this program we delve into a wide variety of subject matter as the demands of leadership at every level has radically evolved as a result of our ever-changing, chaotic, global environment.
One of the targets of our focus in this program is the need for creativity. To compete in any industry today, we must be constantly searching for new and unique ways to market our products and services … regardless of what they may be.
The best method to illustrate this critical aspect of leadership is to share examples of those who have successfully utilized their creative juices to produce positive results … and those examples can be found everywhere today.
We simply must pause long enough to examine them in preparation to adapt these valuable lessons to meet our own needs.
I’ve been coming to New York City for decades now. In fact, I lived here in Greenwich Village for a while in the days of starving artists and hippies. I’ve watched this metropolis continually evolve to meet the needs of millions who live here and the billions who visit. However, it never ceases to amaze me that those who live in the midst of creativity seldom recognize it.
For instance, both vehicle and pedestrian traffic has constantly increased over the years in the heart of New York City. There appears to be no end in sight. “Crowded” would be an understatement. The “Big Apple” boasts the largest subway systems in the world, more than 13,000 taxis, and a population of well over nine million! Add an average of 47 million tourists each year, and you’ve got a real party!
With all of those traffic figures in mind, NYC has attempted what many would consider to be impossible. They closed 42nd to 47th Streets to traffic! They’ve drastically altered the three-way intersection where Broadway meets Seventh Avenue … a popular destination for so many tourists every year. They’ve created a very unique Pedestrian Mall in New York’s Times Square! The heavy traffic has been replaced by hundreds of patio tables, chair and umbrellas where people can hang out, read a book, and have lunch while taking in the sights. It’s become the world’s largest open-air “hospitality” room and, thus far, has been a tremendous success enhancing safety conditions, offering a welcome oasis, and changing the overall “feel” of the city!
While many would invest time and energy explaining that such a project simply couldn’t possibly be accomplished … other creative minds have overcome the odds and DONE IT! Take the time to look around you, and you’ll discover new examples of creativity emerging on a regular basis, Stop, Look, Listen, and Learn! You’ll be glad you did!