Advertisement

Managing Creativity in Media Organisations

  • Paul DwyerEmail author
Part of the Media Business and Innovation book series (MEDIA)

Abstract

Can creativity be managed? Or are the concepts antithetical; is management creativity’s Kryptonite? Almost since Weber’s (1912/1968) formulation of the theory of bureaucracy, the idea of management has been criticised as inimical to creative freedom. This chapter addresses the question of whether media creativity can be managed by reviewing the literature in the field of managing creativity and conducting a case study analysis of an attempt to improve creativity at the BBC. The requirement to manage creativity in practice is arguably a comparatively unique characteristic of media management in both theory and practice. As Lucy Küng (Strategic management in the Media. London, Sage. 9, 2008a) argued, ‘the value of media products derives from the knowledge and creative inspiration of those creating the content; the higher the level of novelty and creativity, the greater the potential for competitive advantage’. For the field of media management as a discipline, this implies that somehow or other media organisations must find ways to manage creativity.

First, I examine the challenge media creativity poses to conventional management thinking and practice. The following section reviews the various attempts by academic researchers to describe and explain how this challenge may be confronted in theory and in practice. This section attempts to show how the different approaches to managing creativity reflect differences in their underlying conceptions of what creativity is. Amabile’s (Creativity in context. Westview Press, 1996a) model of creativity is identified as the best available tool for research and practice in managing creativity. Significant modifications are suggested to improve the model, particularly in conceptualising the role of domain skills in creativity.

The final section attempts to use this model to evaluate Greg Dyke’s attempt to make the BBC ‘the most creative organisation in the world’. The results of the analysis suggest a role for a specialised discipline of media management in developing our understanding of how domain skills specific to media organisations can be combined with more generic tools for promoting creativity to provide a better understanding of how to resolve the inevitable tensions between conventional management practice and media creativity. Further research in this field may develop better conceptualisations of creativity in organisations that could contribute to the broader range of thinking in the fields of creativity and management for media firms.

Keywords

Intrinsic Motivation Media Organisation Conventional Management Creative Industry Domain Skill 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

  1. Adorno, T., & Horkheimer, M. (1979). Dialect of enlightenment. New York: Continuum.Google Scholar
  2. Amabile, T. (1996a). Creativity in context. Boulder: Westview Press.Google Scholar
  3. Amabile, T. (1996b). How to kill creativity. Harvard Business Review September–October 1998.Google Scholar
  4. Aristotle. (1996). Poetics (Malcolm Heath, Trans.). London: Penguin.Google Scholar
  5. Baer, J., & McKool, S. (2009). Assessing creativity using the consensual assessment technique. In C. Schreiner (Ed.), Handbook of assessment technologies, methods, and applications in higher education. Hershey, PA: IGI Global.Google Scholar
  6. BBC. (2004a). Creativity crash course. Internal BBC Training Document.Google Scholar
  7. BBC. (2004b). Audience composition: Factual youth strategy: Digging deeper for more tangible strategies BBC One and BBC Two. Marketing, Communications and Audiences, BBCGoogle Scholar
  8. BBC. (2006). Factual series averages features. BBC Factual and Learning MC&A.Google Scholar
  9. Becker, H. (1982). Art worlds. Los Angeles, CA: UCLA Press.Google Scholar
  10. Bilton, C. (2007). Management and creativity. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  11. Bilton, C. (2010). Manageable creativity. International Journal of Cultural Policy, 16(3), 255–269.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Biressi, A., & Nunn, H. (2005). Reality TV. London: Wallflower.Google Scholar
  13. Biskind, P. (1999). Easy riders raging bulls: How the sex-drugs-and rock ‘n roll generation saved Hollywood. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster.Google Scholar
  14. Born, G. (2005). Uncertain vision. London: Vintage.Google Scholar
  15. Braverman, H. (1974). Labor and monopoly capital. New York: Monthly Review Press.Google Scholar
  16. Brown, M. (23 October, 2000). He ain’t heavy. The Guardian.Google Scholar
  17. Carlson, C., & Wilmot, W. (2006). Innovation. New York: Crown.Google Scholar
  18. Caves, R. (2002). Creative industries. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  19. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1988). Society, culture and person. In R. J. Sternberg (Ed.), The nature of creativity (pp. 325–339). Cambridge: CUP.Google Scholar
  20. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1996). Creativity. New York, NY: Harper Collins.Google Scholar
  21. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1998). Finding flow. New York, NY: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  22. Daily Telegraph. (2003, May 15). BBC to spend millions on leadership training courses. Daily Telegraph. Google Scholar
  23. Daily Telegraph. (2 October, 2004). BBC’s £35m training course is a fiasco, says expert. Daily Telegraph. Google Scholar
  24. Daily Telegraph. (23 November, 2010). Strictly Come Dancing is ‘world’s most successful reality television format.’ Daily Telegraph.Google Scholar
  25. Daily Telegraph. (12 January, 2012). Richard Hopkins: Obituary. Daily Telegraph. Google Scholar
  26. De Bono, E. (1971). The use of lateral thinking. Harmondsworth: Penguin.Google Scholar
  27. De Bono, E. (1987). The use of lateral thinking. Harmondsworth: Penguin.Google Scholar
  28. Dyke, G. (2004). Inside story. London: Harper Perennial.Google Scholar
  29. Florida, R. (2002). The rise of the creative class. New York, NY: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  30. Freud, S. (1908). The relationship of the poet to daydreaming. In S. Freud (Ed.), On creativity and the unconscious (pp. 44–55). New York, NY: Harper.Google Scholar
  31. Garnham, N. (2005). From cultural to creative industries. International Journal of Cultural Policy, 11(1), 15–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Hennessey, B. A., & Amabile, T. (2010). Creativity. Annual Review of Psychology, 61, 569–598.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Herzberg, F. (1959). The motivation to work. New York: John Wiley.Google Scholar
  34. Koenig, N. (2005) Promiscuous hybridity: The commissioning process. In British Broadcasting Reuters Foundation Paper No: 258. Oxford: Green College.Google Scholar
  35. Küng, L. (2004). What makes media firms tick? Exploring the hidden drivers of firm performance. In R. Picard (Ed.), Strategic responses to media market changes. Jonkoping International Business School: Jonkoping.Google Scholar
  36. Küng, L. (2008). Strategic management in the media. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  37. Mayo, E. (1933). The human problems of an industrial civilization. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  38. Mintzberg, H. (1979). The structuring of organization. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  39. Morgan, G. (1989). Creative organization theory: A resource book. Newbury Park: Sage.Google Scholar
  40. Neale, S. (1990). Genre and Hollywood. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  41. Osborn, A. (1953). Applied imagination. New York, NY: Scribners.Google Scholar
  42. Perry, B. (August, 2009). How Hollywood manages talent. In Talent Management. Google Scholar
  43. Picard, R. G. (Ed.) (2005/2014). Media product portfolios: Issues in management of multiple products and services. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  44. Puccio, G., Murdock, M., & Mance, M. (2006). Creative leadership. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  45. Rose, B. (1985). Introduction. In B. Rose & R. Alley (Eds.), TV genres: A handbook and reference guide. Westport, CT: Greenwood Publishing Group.Google Scholar
  46. Runco, M. (2010). Divergent thinking, creativity and ideation. In J. Kaufman & R. Sternberg (Eds.), The Cambridge handbook of creativity (pp. 413–446). New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Spindler, S., & van den Brul, C. (2006–2007). Making it happen. NHK Broadcasting Studies 5, 29–55.Google Scholar
  48. Staiger, J. (2000). Blockbuster TV: Must-see sitcoms in the network era. New York: NYU Press.Google Scholar
  49. Taylor, F. W. (1911). The principles of scientific management. New York: Harper Brothers.Google Scholar
  50. Terry, N., Butler, M., & De’Armond, D. (2005). The determinants of domestic box office performance in the motion picture industry. Southwestern Economic Review, 32(1), 137–148.Google Scholar
  51. Todorov, T. (1973). The fantastic. Cleveland, OH: Case Western Reserve University Press.Google Scholar
  52. Weber, M. (1915/1947) The theory of social and economic organization (trans. Talcott Parsons). New York: Free PressGoogle Scholar
  53. Weber, M. (1912/1968). Economy and society. New York: Bedminster Press.Google Scholar
  54. Weisberg, R. (1986). Creativity: Genius and other myths. New York: WH Freeman/Times Books/Henry Holt & Co.Google Scholar
  55. Weisberg, R. (1993). Creativity: Beyond the myth of genius. New York: WH Freeman.Google Scholar
  56. Weisberg, R. (2010). The study of creativity: From genius to cognitive science. International Journal of Cultural Policy, 16(3), 235–253.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Xu, F., & Rickards, T. (2007). Creative management. Creativity and Innovation Management, 16(3), 216–228.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Zafirau, S. (2008). Reputation work in selling film and television. Qualitative Sociology, 31(2), 99–127.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CAMRIUniversity of WestminsterHarrowUK

Personalised recommendations