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A Kindergarten classroom is always full of delight and playfulness. The classrooms are spaces where little students can express themselves and their creativity. It is a space that allows them to engage their creativity and explore their talents – a colorful and vibrant setting that can at times get quite messy.

Children’s imaginations can run so wild. Little ones have not yet been exposed to fear or constraints. Fears and worry are natural as they grow up. A kindergarten kid is intelligent enough to explore various aspects of life. Their curiosity is always there, and they do not let anything get between them and discovering more about the world around them.

Declining Curiosity

The curiosity, imagination, and creative wonder that kids have continues to decline, as they grow older and face challenges. They also observe how the adults around them behave. As they move from Kindergarten to subsequent classes, they experience more anxiety and less experimentation and curiosity. Their sense of exploration dies and they start following “life’s rules” that they are led to believe are the only way to become successful.

You’ve probably heard people say that you will begin school with a colorful set of crayons, only to graduate with one blue ballpoint pen. That’s quite literally the case.

Come to think of it, it is the same imagination, creativity, and collaboration present in Kindergarten that brings forth successful businesses and world-changing inventions. Corporate conventions, which are often informed by a fear of the unknown or hard times, rarely bring such results.

In today’s world, everything is fast-paced and very competitive. Human creativity will give us an edge against challenges in many fields. There are a lot of people out there who are not exploring their creativity.

Encouraging Innovation

Author Mitchel Resnick, an MIT professor, has a program known as lifelong Kindergarten. Its purpose is to debunk the typical misconceptions and restrictive beliefs of society. He strongly advocates for what he calls the core principles of Kindergarten. They are: Projects, Passion, Peers, and Play. He believes these are the driving forces behind great inventions and problem-solving.

Most corporations do not seek unfamiliar or unexplored territories as long as they are doing well. They will quickly crush any new ideas and suggestions stemming from employees’ creativity. Ironically, managers insist on talent and creativity while hiring, but won’t hear of it when employees try to bring in fresh and new ideas. Some are afraid that employees will attain some level of self-development and leave.

If we sit for a moment and carefully think of Resnick’s philosophy of Lifelong Kindergarten, we can find solutions to most of the problems of the human race. We should entertain all new ideas, regardless of how unorthodox they may seem. Major bureaucracies impeding new ways of doing things have likely led to the loss of ideas that could have provided solutions to major problems.

If there is to be any hope of attaining the highest levels of creativity and invention, we have to do away with tired conventions, and adopt a culture of learning, experimenting, and exploring. Our purpose must be to create new breakthroughs. The constrained culture of Corporate America that insists that things must always be done in specific ways hinders a lot of great invention and suppresses employees’ passions. “Playing towards success”, instead of toiling towards it, will sound much better to your employees.

About Lean Learning Center

The Lean Learning Center was founded in 2001 to address the gaps and barriers that are holding back companies from successful and sustainable lean transformation. In addition to the advanced curriculum, the Center has developed a learning environment designed specifically for adult learning utilizing techniques that include discovery simulations, case studies, personal planning, and reflection – ultimately engaging people at a deep and personal level. We bring our unique lean understanding in creative ways to executives, managers, supervisors, change agents and front-line employees.

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Phone: 248-906-8605


Image Courtesy of What Moms Love