I immediately thought about education and how my early stage nonprofit, innovators4purpose, is attempting to bring innovation education to students who through normal course of action would be the last to receive it. Preparing students for the 21st Century involves a very complex interconnected system of School Leaders, Civic Leaders, Teachers, Parents, Students, Edu Innovators, Funders and many more. Students more so than anyone in the ecosystem understands their needs, however they are the least empowered to drive change.
As we wrapped up our 5th grade Creative Doers program, we presented the Principal at our partner school, Fletcher Maynard Academy (FMA) in Cambridge, MA, with a poster of John Maeda’s “Characteristics of the Creative Leader.” John Maeda was a professor at the MIT Media Lab, President of Rhode Island School of Design and is currently a Design Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers venture capital firm. The list compares and contrasts Creative Leaders with Traditional Leaders.
One of my favorite distinctions is that Creative Leaders “iterate and do” vs. Traditional Leaders who “plan and execute.” Planning most often turns into talking then more talking. We have been fortunate in finding a Creative Leader at FMA having just completed the second iteration of our program there. Conversely, we are still in the planning (talking) stages with many others. Here is a partial listing of the characteristics of a Creative Leader:
Read the entire list here: Characteristics of the Creative Leader
The educational ecosystem is filled with traditional leaders. However, today’s challenges requires creative leadership. Fortunately, Creative Leaders are both born and made. So, let’s start making!