Posts Categorized: CPSI

Next Stop: Planet CPSI!

By Charlie Garland If you’re a creativity-oriented person like I am, then you’ve probably experienced a lot of what I’m about to tell you. But, then again, you’ve probably also learned by now how to deal with it in life. Know the feeling you get right after you offer up a creative suggestion, an innovative idea, and outside-the-box thought? People around you invariably give that eye-roll, or perhaps that deer-in-the-headlights sort of “Huh?” response. Or maybe they just slump into that all too familiar “Oh, man, not another one of these wacky ideas again” body language. Yep…we’re the oddballs in almost any setting. Our friends, our family, our co-workers – they’re all the normal ones, and we are the outliers. The “creatives” who don’t really fit in totally with the norm and within that comfortable zone of not rocking the boat. The life of a creative can be a lonely place, indeed. But I had one of the most unique experiences of my life a few weeks ago, and it happened – of all places – way up in Buffalo, New York (which is actually quite beautiful in early June, I must say). Every year, CPSI – the Creative Problem […]

CPSI Gives Us Wings – Community Service and Personal Transformation

By Naomi Skarupinski, Aquatics Director, Town of Tonawanda Parks & Recreation Department My first encounter with the Creative Problem Solving Institute (CPSI) was five years ago, when the conference was brought back to Buffalo, New York. I began my journey in this creative world as a volunteer who was not exactly sure what I was getting myself into. The very moment that I stepped foot onto the campus, I felt right at home. I felt a sense of understanding from the community of people that were all there to learn from one another: a sense of humbleness. I have spent four wonderful years volunteering as a “Wing” (Buffalo Wing – get it?!), working in a multitude of ways to help the conference run smoothly from behind the scenes. Much like the CPSI parcipants, the Wings have a very strong connection with one another, as well as with the CPSI community. There is a sense of pride and ownership that is formed when the choice to be a Wing is made. Some of my greatest connections were formed during the moments I was able to assist a leader or work late hours to “close up shop” for the next day. I […]

Listen to Our Interview with CPSI Spotlight Performer JoAnna Mendl Shaw … on Amplifying Creativity Through Movement

Listen to today’s Creativity in Play interview that CPSI Director Steve Dahlberg and Mary Alice Long did with JoAnna Mendl Shaw, choreographer and creative director of The Equus Projects. They explore how movement, dance and performance can lead anyone to new insights about listening, decision-making and the creative process. Plus, they discover more about The Equus Projects’ inter-species performance works with horses – where listening, leadership, negotiation and adaptability play out with very real consequences. MEET JOANNA MENDL SHAW AND THE EQUUS PROJECTS PERFORMERS IN PERSON: JoAnna and four performers will be featured at the Creative Problem Solving Institute 2017 from June 13 to 18, 2017, in Buffalo, New York. They will: Lead a day-long workshop on Strategic Problem Solving: A Kinetic Experience in Physical Listening. Perform The Breaking Ring, followed by a talk back with the audience and improviser/artist Gary Hirsch. Lead a breakout session on Moving to Think through Immersive Play. Faciliate the experiential FOLDING exploration using folding paper to investigate notions of leadership, leading and following, seeing the whole, and your contribution to a creation process

Creativity and Mental Blocks: Why You Think the Way You Do

By Sarah Thurber, Managing Partner, FourSight On family vacations, my dad planned our trips down to the minute. I thought dads were natural planners. Imagine my surprise when I married someone who traveled around the world with nothing but a backpack and a good attitude. People are different. And they solve problems differently. While some problem-solving behavior is a result of training, much of it is actually a reflection of hardwired thinking preferences. We all have them. They are invisible, but very real. And they are as intractable as handedness. When it comes to solving problems, we all reflexively grab at the challenge with whatever type of thinking we instinctively prefer. Researcher Gerard Puccio, director of the International Center for Studies in Creativity, and current chair of the first graduate program in the science of creativity, studied this phenomenon and figured out a way to measure it. He created the FourSight Thinking Profile, an assessment that measures your preference for each stage in the Creative Problem Solving process. It sheds light on why people behave the way they do. Clarifiers ask questions. Ideators come up with ideas. Developers plan family vacations. And Implementers just grab their backpacks and go. When […]

The Business Impact of Creative Problem Solving

By Thom Gonyeau, Principal, Mountain View Group “Oh, do not ask what it is. Let us go and make our visit.” – T. S. Eliot When I first was enticed to attend the Creative Problem Solving Institute (CPSI) – after lots of prodding from friends – I didn’t really know what to expect. One never does, but it looked and sounded fun. I figured it would be training that would provide some mix of personal and professional development. That was a good hunch. What I didn’t realize at the time was the impact CPSI and Creative Problem Solving would have on my business. As an entrepreneur and creative agency owner, I thought maybe I’d pick up a few new skills. CPS, however, gave (and continues to give) me so much more, in part because it has taught me how to reframe the very essence of what we do for our clients. That, in turn, has led to deeper and richer engagements and has altered our key offerings. I used to look at our team as writers, designers, producers – people who made stuff. Now, I see us primarily Creative Problem Solvers who work within our talents, skills, and knowledge. The difference […]