It’s About TIME!

By: Karen Hershenson, The Clay Street Project, Procter & Gamble

The concept of time has been a source of deliberation and reflection, seemingly since humans became aware of it.  Philosophical and scientific explanations abound.

At the clay street project, we think of time as a force that can be leveraged as a catalyst for innovation.  By harnessing this force, we can both create a sense of urgency, or leverage it to create the seeming absence of time.

Individuals and teams can become victims of overly treating innovation as an intellectual exercise, and essentially become “stuck.”  Time, in these situations, can be effectively used to create pressure that forces individuals and teams to actuate other senses thereby getting them “unstuck.”  Displayed thinking can be an effective practice for this.  The shift often manifests in the form of getting out of the “head” and activating the “body” making the creative process a multi-sensorial experience.

Time can also be used to create space.  As a parent, have you ever put your child in a “time out”?  Parents often use this as a form of discipline giving the child time to settle down and think about their actions.  In a similar way, but without the negative connotations, we create space for individuals or teams to take a time out.  Our mantra is “slow down to go fast.” We consistently find the act of giving space for an individual or team to collect and metabolize all the thoughts, feelings, stimuli that are flowing through them can be transformative.  We often refer to this process as “emergence,” when teams emerge with a new level of clarity and focus.

As you or your teams are innovating, try experimenting with time.   Consider the role this force can play in maximizing the outcome of your work.   



Most Popular