May 20, 2021
The book Creativity, Inc. is written by Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace. Catmull was the President of Pixar and then Walt Disney Animation. He also worked for LucasFilm so he has a good perspective on what it means to be creative.
Catmull provides his view of how to create and sustain a culture of creativity. Catmull often references failing fast and speaking out. He acknowledges that all companies have problems regardless of culture and this rang true after the book was published as it became apparent there were issues at Pixar with leadership behaviors.
The book does contain good perspectives and approaches to encouraging employees to take appropriate risks and help employees feel ownership in a company. Because I enjoy the backstory, I thought that Catmull’s stories about Pixar’s filmmaking and his interactions with Steve Jobs were nice added touches that keep the reader’s interest.
Lack of creativity and the inability to make bold moves are what hurts companies. Any advice we can get from a leader at a company known for both is worth the read.