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HRINZ Conference 2004 Shifting the Thinking
HRINZ Conference 2004 Shifting the Thinking
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concurrent workshops (HR Interactions)

Ed Bernacki

A2 Fostering Creativity: one idea at a time

Ed Bernacki, Director, The Idea Factory

Nurturing creativity is the fastest long-term strategy to grow the bottom line. But this takes more than vision and leadership – you need people with the skills to innovate. These are the skills to manage ideas, specifically to generate, develop, judge, promote and act on ideas. This session will give you a framework to build an idea management process for your organisation plus new insights for managing your own ideas in more effective ways.

From the research we know that creativity takes a climate that is open to new ideas. The problem is assuming that this is enough. There is ample evidence that proves that our basic skill to find new and original solutions is not well developed. Hence many organisations end up taking their ideas from others rather than striving to create innovative solutions.

To be creative, we need to create. This session will provide the tools and a roadmap to nurture creativity in your organisation, and do so by starting with this question – where do you need innovative ideas for your organisational success? It will leave you understanding how to develop new ideas wherever and whenever they are needed to achieve the results you require.

Session Indicator




All levels

Grunt Factor: 





presentation 40%; Q&A 5%; group work 20%; discussion 35%




Ed introduces a framework for managing ideas through the careful definition of five skills areas. He keeps the session fun and uses a wide variety of colourful “non corporate” looking PowerPoint slides to inform and engage the imagination of participants.

The framework he will use for this session will follow these sections:

  1. Why creativity? It’s about organisational excellence!
  2. What stops us from being innovative now?
  3. Managing ideas as a capacity and skill set. Overview and introduction to the five skills.
  4. Managing the two creativity kills – lack of time and challenge: where do you need innovative ideas to get results?
  5. Where do you need new ideas? 12 months – 12 challenges

Ed Bernacki co-created the concept of the “navigator guides” that have been used at past HRINZ conferences as a tool to help conference participants find more and bigger ideas at conferences. His speciality innovation commissions include a guide for the Singapore Prime Minister’s Office and its Ministry of Defence. He is now the innovation-learning partner for the Canadian Centre for Management Centre, a large public sector management-training organisation. He has presented at workshops and conferences in Singapore, Canada, Australia and throughout New Zealand since the Idea Factory was launched. Ed’s goal is to leave an audience saying, “wow,I never thought of that before!”.

The Idea Factory started in 1996 in New Zealand to help people and organisations develop their capacity to innovate based on Ed Bernacki’s observation that many great ideas already existed inside organisations. The challenge was that these organszations did not have the processes and systems to find, develop and act on these ideas. He is now based in Canada and works extensively with large Government Departments to help foster innovative thinking.

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