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Yes, this book has useful tips on how to let employees express themselves creatively and give constructive feedback but there are also many sections about the author and his personal stories which take away from the useful segments The one thing that shocked me the most though is that while the entire book is dedicated to creating a enjoyable and creative space at work the company was completely blind or unwilling to acknowledge the deeply sexist attitude starting with John Lasseter who eventually had to leave the company because of the sexual assault cases It just seems mindbogling when an author keeps congratulating himself for the amazing environment he managed to create while there were such terrible underlining issues and shows you how far we have to go to make men see women as equal partners It s also time that Pixar hire some female directors and create diversity in their company. Yes, this book has useful tips on how to let employees express themselves creatively and give constructive feedback but there are also many sections about the author and his personal stories which take away from the useful segments The one thing that shocked me the most though is that while the entire book is dedicated to creating a enjoyable and creative space at work the company was completely blind or unwilling to acknowledge the deeply sexist attitude starting with John Lasseter who eventually had to leave the company because of the sexual assault cases It just seems mindbogling when an author keeps congratulating himself for the amazing environment he managed to create while there were such terrible underlining issues and shows you how far we have to go to make men see women as equal partners It s also time that Pixar hire some female directors and create diversity in their company. When I recently read Becoming Steve Jobs, one of points the two authors made was that Steve Jobs had never really had a good mentor early on, which is why he was so much less effective than he could have been The authors felt Jobs finally found that mentor in Ed Catmull While Catmull does not address this specifically, there is an addendum to his book that makes it pretty clear that this was likely the case, as he writes about the same changes that occurred in Steve Jobs after his failure at Next, and with his acquisition of Pixar The two books really did dovetail nicely.Catmull s book really is a must read for any business manager Catmull realized that after his 20 year journey to make a fully computer generated movie was over, that he really needed a new challenge He came to realize that this challenge was to figure out how to prevent Pixar from doing that one big fatal mistake that just about every truly innovative company eventually makes the kind of mistake that is usually incredibly obvious in hindsight So he went about trying to figure out just what it takes to keep a company fresh, creative, and innovative, and this book is the culmination of those findings and explorations Here are a few good tidbits from the blurb above Give a good idea to a mediocre team, and they will screw it up But give a mediocre idea to a great team, and they will either fix it or come up with something better If you don t strive to uncover what is unseen and understand its nature, you will be ill prepared to lead It s not the manager s job to prevent risks It s the manager s job to make it safe for others to take them The cost of preventing errors is often far greater than the cost of fixing them A company s communication structure should not mirror its organizational structure Everybody should be able to talk to anybody.As you can tell, this book gets a huge thumbs up from me It s not a blueprint per se of how to keep that innovative and creative spark, but it does clearly show the kind of path one needs to take to remain successful and relevant in today s fast moving world I did find it funny that the NY Times said this book was quickly becoming the bible for the show business crowd I think they missed the mark on that one It s really the bible for just about any company that relies on having an innovative and creative culture, and these days, that s just about every company on the face of this planet. Creativity Inc Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in The Way of True Inspiration is the intertwined stories of Ed Catmull and Pixar Animation It s than that, though It may be the best book you ll ever read about how leaders and organizations can make it possible for people to use their whole creative brain power I know that s a bold statement Here s why I make it.There is a vast literature out there about how individual people can tap into their natural, God given creativity There s no one best book in this crop, but if you find one that works for you, that one s the best as far as you re concerned.There s not a lot about how organizations and leaders can unleash creativity and most of it is platitudes on parade We re told to fail fast and fail often as if failing was the point It s not Learning is the point We re told to tell people they should not be afraid to fail What nonsense Nobody likes to fail, and if they re afraid to fail, it s not their fault It s yours We re also given that advice as if there is an alternative to doing creative cutting edge work without getting it wrong, mostly at the beginning There isn t That s the way the world works.Some writers do a better job on this by talking about ways you can structure things so that a failure is likely to be seen as a learning experience and where criticism and bad news can be received as gifts rather than attacks But there s precious little in those books about how you actually make it work and then keep it working over time.Creativity Inc is different The primary reason is Ed Catmull and his willingness to talk about the details of both his and Pixar s journeys Here s what I consider the key quote from very early in the book What makes Pixar special is that we acknowledge we will always have problems, many of them hidden from our view but we work hard to uncover those problems, even if doing so means making ourselves uncomfortable and that when we come across a problem, we marshal all of our energies to solve it Early in the book, Catmull tells the story of a table in a meeting room at Pixar The table, evidently, looks like most of the tables in most meeting rooms that I ve been in It was rectangular Most of us have heard that tables with that shape aren t exactly symbols of an egalitarian culture and that they stifle open discussion But we keep meeting around those tables So did Pixar Over the course of a decade, we held countless meetings around this table in this way completely unaware of how doing so undermined our own core principles When Catmull and his crew become aware of the effect of the table, they change it Good for them Then they discover that there are other behaviors that may have been linked to the table originally but continue after the table is changed For example, on the old table there were place cards indicating where people sat Powerful people at the ends, junior people toward the middle The new square table removed the power of shape but the place cards had become common practice, too So, when Catmull came into the room for a meeting around the new table, he found place cards indicating where everyone should sit.That is the book in a nutshell Catmull covers a lot of ground and many topics, but the core book is about how he, John Lasseter, and other people at Pixar, uncovered problems and worked to solve them, nurtured creative energy, and dealt with the inevitable conflicts and surprises Every organization that I ve ever worked with or visited has had similar issues.One problem putting together the review for this book is that it is simply riddled with wisdom So, rather than give you the standard chapter summaries that I put in most reviews, I m going to list each of the four sections and name the chapters that are in it, then share some quotes from that section I m sure that when you read the book, you will find your own insightful bits that are different from mine.Part 1 is called Getting Started The four chapters, Animated, Pixar Is Born, A Defining Goal, and Establishing Pixar s Identity, tell the story of Ed Catmull and Pixar up until the success of Toy Story I also didn t yet know that my self assigned mission was about much than technology To pull it off, we d have to be creative not only technically but also in the ways that we worked together.What had drawn me to science, all those years ago, was the search for understanding Human interaction is far complex than relativity or string theory, of course, but that only made it interesting and important it constantly challenged my presumptions As we made movies, I would learn that some of my beliefs about why and how Pixar had been successful were wrong But one thing could not have been plain Figuring out how to build a sustainable creative culture one that didn t just pay lip service to the importance of things like honesty, excellence, communication, originality, and self assessment but really committed to them, no matter how uncomfortable that became wasn t a singular assignment It was a day in day out, full time job And one that I wanted to do.Part 2 is titled Protecting the New That s a theme that will run through the book from here on The chapters are Honesty and Candor, Fear and Failure, The Hungry Beast and The Ugly Baby, Change and Randomness, and The Hidden Because early on, all of our movies suck That s a blunt assessment, I know, but I make a point of repeating it often, and I choose that phrasing because saying it in a softer way fails to convey how bad the first versions of our films really are I m not trying to be modest or self effacing by saying this Pixar films are not good at first, and our job is to make them so to go, as I say, from suck to not suck This idea that all the movies we now think of as brilliant were, at one time, terrible is a hard concept for many to grasp So if your primary goal is to have a fully worked out, set in stone plan, you are only upping your chances of being unoriginal One of the biggest barriers is fear, and while failure comes with the territory, fear shouldn t have to The goal, then, is to uncouple fear and failure to create an environment in which making mistakes doesn t strike terror into your employees hearts.If you don t try to uncover what is unseen and understand its nature, you will be ill prepared to lead.Part 3 is titled Building and Sustaining There are only two chapters Broadening Our View and The Unmade Future.This third section of the book is devoted to some of the specific methods we have employed at Pixar to prevent our disparate views from hindering our collaboration In each case, we are trying to force ourselves individually and as a company to challenge our preconceptions.Companies, like individuals, do not become exceptional by believing they are exceptional but by understanding the ways in which they aren t exceptional Postmortems are one route into that understanding Part 4, titled Testing What We Know, also has just two chapters They are A New Challenge and Notes Day.The future is not a destination it is a direction.One thing Steve Jobs played a critical role in Pixar s success and Ed Catmull has included an afterword called The Steve Jobs We Knew My friend, Bob Sutton, has said that Steve Jobs is something of a Rorschach test for people You see what you think you see, and other people see the same thing and interpret it differently My problem has always been that most of the views of Jobs freeze him in time and they don t indicate any growth or maturity No one as intelligent or introspective as Steve Jobs would have stayed the same for his entire life What I loved about the afterword is that it not only gave a unique view of Jobs as both a business partner and a friend, but also talked about his growth during his life.Bottom LineCreativity Inc Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in The Way of True Inspiration is a great book about creativity and about how to lead an organization More importantly it is the very best book I ve ever read about unleashing the initiative and creativity of people in an organization. When I recently read Becoming Steve Jobs, one of points the two authors made was that Steve Jobs had never really had a good mentor early on, which is why he was so much less effective than he could have been The authors felt Jobs finally found that mentor in Ed Catmull While Catmull does not address this specifically, there is an addendum to his book that makes it pretty clear that this was likely the case, as he writes about the same changes that occurred in Steve Jobs after his failure at Next, and with his acquisition of Pixar The two books really did dovetail nicely.Catmull s book really is a must read for any business manager Catmull realized that after his 20 year journey to make a fully computer generated movie was over, that he really needed a new challenge He came to realize that this challenge was to figure out how to prevent Pixar from doing that one big fatal mistake that just about every truly innovative company eventually makes the kind of mistake that is usually incredibly obvious in hindsight So he went about trying to figure out just what it takes to keep a company fresh, creative, and innovative, and this book is the culmination of those findings and explorations Here are a few good tidbits from the blurb above Give a good idea to a mediocre team, and they will screw it up But give a mediocre idea to a great team, and they will either fix it or come up with something better If you don t strive to uncover what is unseen and understand its nature, you will be ill prepared to lead It s not the manager s job to prevent risks It s the manager s job to make it safe for others to take them The cost of preventing errors is often far greater than the cost of fixing them A company s communication structure should not mirror its organizational structure Everybody should be able to talk to anybody.As you can tell, this book gets a huge thumbs up from me It s not a blueprint per se of how to keep that innovative and creative spark, but it does clearly show the kind of path one needs to take to remain successful and relevant in today s fast moving world I did find it funny that the NY Times said this book was quickly becoming the bible for the show business crowd I think they missed the mark on that one It s really the bible for just about any company that relies on having an innovative and creative culture, and these days, that s just about every company on the face of this planet. *DOWNLOAD EPUB ⇲ Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration ☛ From Ed Catmull, Co Founder With Steve Jobs And John Lasseter Of Pixar Animation Studios, Comes An Incisive Book About Creativity In Business Sure To Appeal To Readers Of Daniel Pink, Tom Peters, And Chip And Dan Heath Creativity, Inc Is A Book For Managers Who Want To Lead Their Employees To New Heights, A Manual For Anyone Who Strives For Originality, And The First Ever, All Access Trip Into The Nerve Center Of Pixar Animation Into The Meetings, Postmortems, And Braintrust Sessions Where Some Of The Most Successful Films In History Are Made It Is, At Heart, A Book About How To Build A Creative Culture But It Is Also, As Pixar Co Founder And President Ed Catmull Writes, An Expression Of The Ideas That I Believe Make The Best In Us Possible For Nearly Years, Pixar Has Dominated The World Of Animation, Producing Such Beloved Films As The Toy Story Trilogy, Monsters, Inc Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Up, And WALL E, Which Have Gone On To Set Box Office Records And Garner Academy Awards The Joyousness Of The Storytelling, The Inventive Plots, The Emotional Authenticity In Some Ways, Pixar Movies Are An Object Lesson In What Creativity Really Is Here, In This Book, Catmull Reveals The Ideals And Techniques That Have Made Pixar So Widely Admired And So Profitable As A Young Man, Ed Catmull Had A Dream To Make The First Computer Animated Movie He Nurtured That Dream As A PhD Student At The University Of Utah, Where Many Computer Science Pioneers Got Their Start, And Then Forged A Partnership With George Lucas That Led, Indirectly, To His Founding Pixar With Steve Jobs And John Lasseter In Nine Years Later, Toy Story Was Released, Changing Animation Forever The Essential Ingredient In That Movie S Success And In The Movies That Followed Was The Unique Environment That Catmull And His Colleagues Built At Pixar, Based On Philosophies That Protect The Creative Process And Defy Convention, Such As Give A Good Idea To A Mediocre Team, And They Will Screw It Up But Give A Mediocre Idea To A Great Team, And They Will Either Fix It Or Come Up With Something Better If You Don T Strive To Uncover What Is Unseen And Understand Its Nature, You Will Be Ill Prepared To Lead It S Not The Manager S Job To Prevent Risks It S The Manager S Job To Make It Safe For Others To Take Them The Cost Of Preventing Errors Is Often Far Greater Than The Cost Of Fixing Them A Company S Communication Structure Should Not Mirror Its Organizational Structure Everybody Should Be Able To Talk To Anybody Do Not Assume That General Agreement Will Lead To Change It Takes Substantial Energy To Move A Group, Even When All Are On Board