The Creative Priority: Putting Innovation to Work in Your Business [NOOK Book]

Overview

How does your company define creativity? Or doescreativity define your company? In this remarkable book, Jerry Hirshberg, founder and president of Nissan Design International (NDI), distills his experience as leader of the world's hotbed of automotive innovation and reveals his strategy for designing an organization around creativity.

In The Creative Priority Hirshberg weaves together enlightening real-world anecdotes with the story of NDI's genesis to illustrate eleven ...

See more details below
The Creative Priority: Putting Innovation to Work in Your Business

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$0.99
BN.com price

Overview

How does your company define creativity? Or doescreativity define your company? In this remarkable book, Jerry Hirshberg, founder and president of Nissan Design International (NDI), distills his experience as leader of the world's hotbed of automotive innovation and reveals his strategy for designing an organization around creativity.

In The Creative Priority Hirshberg weaves together enlightening real-world anecdotes with the story of NDI's genesis to illustrate eleven interlocking strategies that came to define NDI's creative priority. Richly illustrated with NDI's elegant designs and sketched, The Creative Priority is at once a compelling narrative, a rich store of hands-on experience, and a grab bag of breakthrough insights that can help your business perform its most vital function.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Inc.
Do yourself a favor: go out and buy a copy of The Creative Priority by Jerry Hirshberg. Read through it once, and then go back and read it again. The strategies are both fascinating and immensely practical for those who work in idea-intensive environments—and who doesn't these days?
Wired
If you're a manager, you must read this book.
Betty Edward
This is a terrific book! Jerry Hirshberg demystifies creativity with eleven practical strategies for making creativity central to any endeavor, from running a business to facing life's challenges. The book is infused with candid humor, clear thinking, and a mind-set nothing short of revolutionary.
Max DePree
Fresh, clear practical, steps for moving from the drawing room to the boardroom. A landmark book on creativity that is itself creative.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061967917
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/20/2009
  • Sold by: HARPERCOLLINS
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 1,071,100
  • File size: 853 KB

Meet the Author

In 1980, Jerry Hirshberg ended a 16-year stint as an executive designer at General Motors, where he headed design for Pontiac and Buick, and accepted the position of founding director and eventually President of Nissan Design International, Inc. This unique corporate hybrid has become a creative hotbed of automotive innovation, producing such cutting edge designs as the first Nissan Pathfinder, Altima, Maxima, Pulsar NX and Quest minivan, the Infiniti J30 and the Mercury Villager for Ford. Along the way, owing to an intriguing fixture of the agreement he forged between NDI and Nissan, Hirshberg's team also designs computer concepts for Apple and Motorola, golf clubs for Taylor Made (including the famed 'Bubble Burner'), medical instruments, ski-boots, yachts and pre-school daycare furniture for an international list of clients.

Born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1939, Mr. Hirshberg has spent a lifetime dealing with the creative process. Along with being a designer, he is a consummate painter and classical musician. He scored one of his earliest creative successes with the rock-and-roll hit 'Sparkling Blue,' adopting the stage name Jerry Paul, and was the occasional opening act for such singers as Bobby Rydell, Fabian and Frankie Avalon. He studied Mechanical Engineering at Ohio State University and graduated with honors in Design from the Cleveland Institute of Art, with further study in Europe on a Mary C. Page Fellowship.

He has served on the Board of Trustees for the Cleveland Institute of Art, the San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art, the Board of Advisors for the Graduate School for Pacific and International Studies at UCSD and the Mayor's Growth Management Task Force for San Diego. He has been a member of the Design Arts Panel for the National Endowment for the Arts in Washington, D.C., and was a member of a select group of the country's leading designers invited to Little Rock, Arkansas to consider the implications of Design for the American economy. He chaired the national IDEA Awards program co-sponsored by Business Week and the Industrial Design Society of America, of which he has served as a national director.

Mr. Hirshberg has lectured at such universities as Harvard, Berkeley, Stanford, UCLA and Brown, many of which now teach the principles he and his colleagues developed at NDI. He has also addressed a broad variety of professional organizations and audiences worldwide, and has been the subject of several documentary films and television specials in Europe, for PBS in America, and for British television. He speaks on a wide variety of subjects ranging from design and automobiles to public art and creativity in business. He has even addressed the application of his ideas on creative thinking to leading police departments.

The father of sons Eric, a graphic design and advertising executive, and Glen, a writer and teacher, he works and lives with his wife Linda, a Ph.D. Clinical and Organizational Psychologist and President of Applied Behavioral Systems, in Del Mar, California.

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One


NDI was born in an atmosphere rife with abrasion. One culture had joined another for help in an area in which it was particularly uncomfortable: the breaking of traditions. A varied group of disciplines had been gathered closely together, each with its own aspirations for what the enterprise might become. I'd left a familiar, comfortable relationship with an established corporation to help found a new entity with strangers in an unfamiliar setting. And from Detroit's perspective, I was seen as having joined "the enemy," switching sides in an economic war between America and Japan. Clearly, this was not going to be a serene retreat for quiet meditation.

Friction between individuals and groups is typically thought of as something harmful. And it usually is. It generates heat and discomfort, disrupts interactions, and can destroy relationships. Between a couple it can lead to divorce. Between countries it can lead to war. Within corporations it can distort and disrupt communication and ruin cohesiveness. Businesses of all types spend considerable time and money trying to reduce or eliminate it. In human terms, it is surely one of the most plentiful and volatile sources of energy on the planet.

While the early years at NDI were disruptive and chafing, however, they were also exciting and explosively fertile. And since creative output was critical, we needed to find ways to reduce the friction without destroying the very ingredients that might be essential to the vibrancy of the process; without, in other words, disrupting our disruptiveness. Multiple disciplines in the same studio, fights over what radio stations to listen to, divergentperceptions of appropriate work hours, modes of dress, codes of behavior, even what was perceived as quality work . . . all of this I saw as a rich and yeasty opportunity for a kind of friction I wanted to turn into light rather than heat. The uneasiness in my stomach and the fireworks in my brain told me there was some vital connection between the abrasiveness itself and original thinking. If we could grasp this connection, we would be tapping into a vast reservoir of creative energy.

The room was tense as a group of Japanese engineers and planners confronted a team of American designers across a drawing-

littered conference table. The vehicle we had been laboring on for almost a year, the first-generation Nissan Pathfinder, was in its concluding developmental phase and was bristling with challenging innovations and new forms. It was to mark Nissan's first entry into the emerging off-road SUV (sport utility vehicle) market in America.

To the Japanese at the time, the imagined uses and romantic appeal of this sport/utility hybrid appeared nearly incomprehensible. The forms of the existing American versions seemed terribly bold, even rude to their eyes. And the very notion of wanting to go "off-road," of spontaneously breaking with the pack, simply turning off a legally marked driving pathway to explore unmarked territory on an impulse was unthinkable to this eminently law-abiding people. To the engineers, among the most cautious of a well-guarded population, the whole project felt uncomfortably Western, as in the Wild West, and very alien.

Although to our eyes we had fashioned a rather civilized, urbane variant of the genre, to Japanese eyes the forms NDI had modeled appeared audacious and rough-hewn. The fenders swelled with highly characterized "bulging triceps" around each wheel. Inspired by the protective structure of the roll bar jutting up from behind the front seats of jeeps and other military vehicles in the event of rollover on extremely rough surfaces, the Pathfinder integrated this extra bracing into the very skin of the vehicle itself. The diagonal struts strengthening the body pillar behind the front door framed the unusual triangular vent windows that appeared behind the front-door glass in the two-door version, and that provided badly needed ventilation for the rear passenger compartment.

Understandably, the Japanese planners and engineers wanted to grasp as much as possible of the thinking behind this challenging new design. By being even more thorough than usual, they provided themselves with some badly needed feelings of security and confidence in their task. Meanwhile, the American staff felt intuitively certain they had gotten hold of a truly fresh and appropriate interpretation for this kind of car and were eager to see it realized.

Each side was pushing hard and the groups had reached an impasse on the resolution of a variety of difficult issues. The project was running late due to a growing, almost obsessive need on the part of the Japanese to restudy, research, and refine every detail. In a moment of frustration at the meeting I said, "Gentlemen, aspects of this design are truly new, and if we don't get it to market soon, we simply won't be first!"

The shukan (project leader) leaned forward, somewhat agitated, and responded, "But Hirshberg-san, we were thinking about being best!"

There was an abrupt, suspended silence. The Americans looked at the Japanese, then each other, and no one moved to fill the silence or bridge the gap. What had been laid bare, exposed in its purest form, were two inarguable, fundamentally alien points of view embedded deeply in each of these cultures.

Some dawning instinct urged me to step back from the moment rather than debate "first" versus "best." I thanked the Japanese for sharing their concerns and suggested that the meeting be concluded at that point. Each group left with these dual polarities nagging and pulling at each other, like the flip-flopping images in a reversible figure/ground illusion, neither prevailing for long and nearly impossible to perceive simultaneously. In the ensuing days and weeks, however, the Japanese moved with dispatch to resolve the remaining issues while the Americans refined their concepts, double-checking every new aspect with painstaking thoroughness. Neither gave up its principal goal, but each now more fully comprehended the concerns and motivations of the other. With subtle but profoundly broadened ends in mind, the vehicle concluded in a reasonably brief period of time, all innovations included and questions fully resolved.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Preface to the Paperback Edition ..... xv
The Creative Priority Quiz ..... xix
Introduction: Unleashing Creativity ..... 1
Part I: Polarity
Chapter 1: Creative Abrasion ..... 29
Chapter 2: Hiring in Divergent Pairs ..... 47
Chapter 3: Embracing the Dragon ..... 63
Part II: Unprecedented Thinking
Chapter 4: Creative Questions Before Creative Answers ..... 77
Chapter 5: Stepping Back from the Canvas ..... 87
Chapter 6: Failure, Cheating, and Play ..... 99
Part III: Beyond the Edges
Chapter 7: The Bluffing of Disciplinary Boundaries ..... 12
Chapter 8: Intercultural Creativity: Treating Diverse Disciplines as Alien Cultures ..... 145
Chapter 9: Drinking from Diverse Wells ..... 171
Part IV: Synthesis
Chapter 10: Informed Intuition ..... 193
Chapter 11: Porous Planning ..... 213
Part V: Conclusion
Chapter 12: Unending ..... 235
Notes ..... 245
Selected Bibliography ..... 249
Index ..... 257
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2008

    Creativity Realized

    This is a excellent book for design students and professionals. This book is focused on automobile design, but this should not let the reader feel like an outsider to this book.I am a Landscape Architecture student, so this book helped me to think outside the box and challenge myself to be more creative. This book includes some unorthodox and unique ways of thinking to generate fresh ideas. The quiz in the introduction, sets the tone for the reader to prepare themselves to think outside the box. The author tells his tale of moving from GM to Nissan Design International. At Nissan Hirshberg's primary goal is to generate new ideas and assemble a team of innovative designers. This book was inspirational and definitly recommended for people of all design disciplines.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)