Friday, September 20, 2013

When You Wish Upon A Star (Destroyer)...

All my life, I've been that guy. A writer, a designer an artist. It's in the DNA. Over the years, I've come to recognize a few things. First, integrity counts for a lot. Staying true to what drives you is imperative for a clear conscience and a clean vision. To pursue strong, innovative and passionate ideas is what makes for the best creativity–and ultimately–a fulfilling and successful life. 

The Walt Disney company has this down to a science. And it pays off BIG. 

Say what you want about the Disney Empire, this company consistently earns it's rep for delivering a strong creative product, time and time again. Even down to the properties they absorb like PIXAR animation studios, Marvel Comics and of course, the Star Wars franchise. From the Pirates of the Caribbean movies to a slew of story-telling classics including Snow White, The Lion King, Cinderella and Mary Poppins to only scratch the surface. I won't even mention the juggernaut of the new Disney Infinity toy/video game mash-up product that is just raking in the cash right now.

The Disney Empire is ever-expanding too; it also commands every move of a multi-billion dollar media network that includes the likes of ESPN, Disney and ABC. 

These properties live, breathe and thrive because the people in the mouse ears keep their hands off the process–and therein lies the key to creative success. If you are someone who visits this blog often or knows me, you know I have my issues with the any corporate juggernaut, but you gotta' give props where props are due.

It's often been said that it takes a good eye to recognize great talent but it takes a great one to keep it's hands off the work. 

I'm confident that Disney is driven by the bottom-line, like every other major corporation. Honestly, how could that NOT be the case? So many companies, even the ones in the entertainment biz, totally don't get the value of letting creativity breathe and thrive. Perhaps Disney knows (and still embraces!) the concept of letting craftspeople do their craft.* 

How great would it be if we were all required to do our jobs with an expectation for creative innovation? It's all any of us needs to succeed and the world offers so little opportunity for it. Kudos to Disney for getting big things to happen by making the small decision of letting people do their jobs with inspiration.  

The world isn't a perfect place, but we can perfect how we work in it and how we work with others–and you could do a whole lot worse than to have your boss say; "…make sure what you do is great and super creative—or else!"

So let's all wish upon a star (or for Star Wars fans, a Star Destroyer) and hope for a better tomorrow–filled with challenging creative endeavors. That's a better shot than most pursue in their professional lives. I realize the irony behind the  the concept of forced (see what I did there... "forced"? Huh? Huh?) creativity, but it's still better than the alternative. Okay, I've said too much, heading back to the corner...

* I'm sure the countryside is littered with tales of creative and professional horror about Disney's overbearing, heavy-handed and demanding internal practices and policies. My point still stands. 
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