Monday, February 3, 2014

Want To Be The Leader
in Your Field? Be First. Be Creative.

Brad's Best Blog Posts

Back in the late 60s, before Jim Henson & Frank Oz introduced The Muppets on Sesame Street there wasn’t much on television for kids. Sure there was Saturday morning cartoons but not much that was appealing. Jim & Frank created a new industry because they wanted to make children's education fun and entertaining. By integrating their already popular puppeteering to the show, Sesame Street became an icon of children's television...and still going strong to this day.

George Lucas envisioned a strange world and put it on film at a time when very few science fiction films made any money nor were they taken seriously. George is a pioneer.

Marin Alsop became the first female conductor and Music Director of the Baltimore Symphony in an industry dominated by men. She ignored the statistics and became a trailblazer.

Dick Gregory decided to tell White Americans what Black Americans thought at a time when the majority of comedians were standing around in a dark suit with a microphone in a stand telling people what they wanted to hear. Gregory brought us into his world. He didn’t sugar coat it – he was raw about it – but he took the time out to make it funny. He lead the way for Richard Pryor, Chris Rock, Chris Tucker. Dick Gregory is courageous.

What is my point? Well there are 2 things each of these stories has in common. First, each of  these people mentioned took chances despite what everyone else was doing, saying or believing. Second, they are incredibly creative people.

Creativity is a major key for success in any field.

What sets every single product you buy apart? Creativity. We pay a premium but many don't know why. Jaguar, Bose, a brand that is a leader in their field and you find consistent creative innovation. Getting creative and introducing products and systems that no one else is doing will position you as a leader in a new niche within your industry.

Think creativity in business is just for the creative industries?
Think again.

Donald Trump is into the Art of The Deal. His first book made me realize this man sees business as a creative opportunity. The Donald is a creative strategist.

Stephen Hawking was capable of envisioning and proving alternative theories on physics and time because he is creative in the way he approaches every new idea. He has not only introduced completely new ways of thinking about our universe, he has overturned as well as proven some of Einstein’s well-documented theories. Dr. Hawking is a visionary creative.

For 10 years, the television show American Chopper focused on a family owned, custom motorcycle shop – Orange County Choppers. The antics of Paul Teutul Sr. and his two sons Paul Jr. and Mikey made the show entertaining (and sometimes annoying), but their creative approach to custom bike building is just mesmerizing to watch. Paul Sr. has written 2 successful business books, run a business and a successful television show. All based on Paul Sr. 40 years as an entrepreneur. And the guys at OCC give back – they are one of the top companies working with the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Paul Sr. is a creative entrepreneur.

Steven Jobs pitched the idea that computers should be user-friendly. While Steve Wozniak built the Apple 1 and Apple II computers. Together they created a multi-billion dollar company within a niche industry inside the computer industry! All because Apple and the culture they created, look at computers differently. Creative technologists.

Each visionary leader mentioned above may get all the credit, but they surrounded themselves with incredibly talented individuals – and in many cases, gave those team members credit.

Companies that respect their own creative process and the people who get them there, seem to be consistent leaders. Every product or system that comes from his or her imaginations is an industry unto itself.

Try taking a page from their process. Creativity is King.

Thanks for stopping by...


Brad Szollose

Bridging Generational Chaos: Multigenerational management expert, award-winning author, business consultant and keynote speaker

Brad Szollose is a much sought-after generational expert, management consultant and keynote speaker who helps smart companies understand just how much technology has transformed corporate culture and behavior… and how that impacts management interaction, expectations and sales in The Digital Age.

But this is not based on management theory: With a 30 year career as an entrepreneur he knows firsthand what it’s like to grow a company from a simple idea in a coffee shop to an internationally recognized brand.

Brad is a former C-Level Internet Executive who went from entrepreneur to IPO in 3 yrs—co-founding K2 Design, the very first Dot Com Agency to go public on NASDAQ. His company experienced 425% hyper-growth for 5 straight years, expanded from 2 business partners to 4 with 60+ employees and offices worldwide. At its height, K2 was valuated at over $26 million. 

His results only management model (ROWE) was applied to the first wave of young Generation Y workers producing great results—winning K2 the Arthur Andersen NY Enterprise Award for Best Practices in Fostering Innovation.

Brad Szollose is also the *award-winning author of Liquid Leadership: From Woodstock to Wikipedia which explores the subject of new leadership styles – mainly how to get the tech-savvy Generation Y and analogue driven Baby Boomers working together. ISBN-13: 978-1608320554

Known for his humorous and thought-provoking presentations, Szollose received the highest testimonial of his career from a C-Level audience member: "I just had my mind blown." Brad’s keynotes and workshops are highly interactive, heart-warming, humorous, and filled with high-content information that challenge assumptions and help leaders and managers create a better work environment for innovation to thrive.

Liquid Leadership has been called "THE guidebook for the 21st Century" and has won the 2011 Axiom Business Book Award silver medal for leadership, The Indie Business Book runner up silver medal as well as becoming a #1 Best-Selling Business Book on Amazon for Organizational Learning. Published in the United States by Greenleaf Book Group, in India by Prolibris and in South Korea by UI Books/Iljinsa Publishing.

Mr. Szollose also writes a monthly column on business and marketing techniques that reach Generation Y for A Captured Mind newsletter and is part of The Mind Capture Group faculty.

Today, Brad helps businesses close the Digital Divide by understanding it as a Cultural Divide – created by the new tech-savvy worker...and customer. 

* 2011 Axiom Business Book silver medal winner in the leadership

* #1 Amazon Best-Selling Author

"I just had my mind blown..." - A.S., Vistage, New York

Liquid Leadership by Brad Szollose is available at all major bookstores and for Kindle, Nook, iPad and Sony ereaders. Internationally published in India and S. Korea.