David Burkus Silences the Critics with The Myths of Creativity – Episode 95

March 3, 2014

A special thanks goes out to our friend and fellow Secret Team’er (of cousin Chris Brogan’s Facebook group) CA Hurst for connecting us to today’s featured guest, David Burkus. David is the author of the new book The Myths of Creativity. Not only did the book title woo me, I was dying to get David on the show to make sense of all the doubt I’ve had about calling myself a “creative” until recent years. In our conversation, we uncover the difference between being creative and having a skill set. Two important things that must be developed simultaneously in order to grow and develop mastery.

Watch the show (uncensored & unedited)

Listen to the podcast

Share Some Shut Up Love –> When you have a growth mindset, it’s not win or lose. It’s win or learn. – @DavidBurkus #shutupshow (click to tweet)

Fun Facts:

  • David Burkus is assistant professor of management at the College of Business at Oral Roberts University, where he teaches courses on creativity, innovation, entrepreneurship, and organizational behavior.
  • David is the founder and host of LDRLB (pronounced “leader lab”), a podcast that shares insights from research on leadership, innovation, and strategy.
  • David is a contributing writer for 99U, Creativity Post, and the Harvard Business Review blog.
  • David has spoken on leadership and innovation to a diverse set of audiences, from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies to the U.S. Naval Academy.
  • David holds a doctorate of strategic leadership from Regent University.
  • David is the author of The Myths of Creativity: The Truth About How Innovative Companies and People Generate Great Ideas.

Defining Shut Up Moment:

I knew I was going to be a writer and travel around to speak since I was 14. I just didn’t know at 14 how I was going to do it.
When I went to college, I got hit by a science, organizational behavior bug. I noticed non-fiction business book writers didn’t know how to write so I knew that was an area I wanted to get in to. I got a job as a pharmaceutical rep out of college, selling drugs from the back of my car for five years. I got paid well. It only costs you your soul but it was fun. I started writing all these articles. I started the podcast while I was still working. But it got frustrating. I realized there was a whole bunch of people who didn’t see me the way I wanted to be perceived. Things came to a head when I was in San Antonio. I visited the Alamo for the first time. It was a really cool, poetic moment. The pharmaceutical company had a meeting. Brought in a motivational speaker. They tried to pump us up. And I was so incredibly bored. I opened up my work laptop and started writing my resignation letter.

Shut Up Tips:

What goes on in your head is all this junk we tell ourselves about who is creative or not. There’s really no basis in science. – David Burkus

Whenever we face something hard to explain, we tell ourselves a story and look for confirming evidence of that story instead of looking for real evidence. – David Burkus

Everybody is wired to be creative. The question is whether you’re willing to put in the work to recognize it and cultivate it. – David Burkus

There’s a difference between creativity and a skill set. You can be a whiz at Photoshop and still not be able to come up with a creative idea. – David Burkus

Creativity and skill set are both important and you need to be developing them simultaneously. – David Burkus

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” – Anais Nin (via David Burkus)

The risk of staying in the comfort zone dramatically outweighed the risk of giving it a shot. – David Burkus

If I had a podcast, maybe I could convince people to talk to me. – David Burkus

I want to do the “walk on fire” part without having to sit through the rest of the Tony Robbins schpeel. – David Burkus

If I put in the time and put in the work, I can get better. There are things I can get better at but it might not be world class.- David Burkus

When you have a growth mindset, it’s not win or lose. It’s win or learn. – David Burkus

If you believe you have a growth mindset, you’ll develop one. – David Burkus

I’m always afraid when I push publish on any piece I write. – David Burkus

I actually think my deepest fear is being a good parent and doing all the things in the world I want to do. I’m afraid I’ll get to some reflective point and realize I had some priorities wrong. – David Burkus

I’m way cooler online unless questions like “What are you afraid of right now?” get asked. I’m willing to take that. – David Burkus

David Recommends:

Check out David’s book on Amazon: The Myths of Creativity

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Find David:

David’s web site: DavidBurkus.com

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