Thursday, January 26, 2006

Creative Entrepreneurs from Creative Students

Well it's the day after what proved to be a pretty successful event. Antonio Gould one of our panellists and Director of 3form a local Internet company has posted this very positive account of the day on his newish blog. Overall I found the occasion very positive with some clear next steps for how as a community of interest we might all start working together i,e those folks with an interest in educating creatives in enterprise. For me there was a whole host of new ideas that came out of the event and really by way of reminding myself here is a bullet list of future posts I will attempt to write from things that came up from the day:

1. Do creative people learn differently? Or is just that they are taught differently?
2. What can Business Schools learn from Arts Schools in terms of experiential learning for future entrepreneurs: i.e brief, self management, critique
3. With the increasing lack of failure in HE (i.e no one fails anything anymore) is being a student detrimental to developing your enterprising abilities. (i.e failure, coping with failure/rejection is part and parcel of the real world for creative Industries).

There are many more but I will try to get back to these soon. There will also be a longer and more comprehensive breakdown of the conference coming soon/tomorrow.


Pete said...

Hi Charlotte,

Really enjoyed reading your take on Creativity, Enterprise, Education and how to encourage it. I run an education programme in NE england that focuses on experential learning as being the key to help people recognise their inherent creativity so it hit a nerve.

Your event sounds like it would have been really good fun and it seems quite a lot of interesting issues were brought up. The topics you have shortlisted are massive and i don't envy your task in thoroughly researching and answering them, since the nature/nurture debate alone (aka point 1) is very hotly debated!

Personally, i think it must be a combination, it's like in football, you may have all the natural talent in the world (Gazza) but unless you put in the time and commitment then you won't be as successful, have a long career, and make as much money, as far less talented blokes (Phil Neville to name one!)

I think business schools have really cottoned on to the idea of experential learning. I went to Newcastle Uni and was actively encouraged to get as much out of Uni as i could by not just 'earning' my degree but doing as much extra curricular as possible, and learn through doing.

Talking about whether people 'earn' degrees brings us onto issue three. Do people just pay, turn up (sporadically) and after three years get a degree? I would say yes, there are stacks of ridiculous courses at 'educational' establishments these days, David Beckham studies, Golf Course management and Retail management. Golf Course management and retail management are obviously important but should be learned 'on the job'. Why have an employer independent university dictate what skills are required and what are surplus?

However, i would have to argue that many of these degrees have a lot of 'study time' and therefore are perfect for the enterprising student who wants to get a degree, have a job and network (i'll steal your subtext style here... read socialise!) Networking was the MOST valuable aspect of university for me. I met my current employer and many of the businesses that we now work with whilst completing my undergrad degree. If anything, moving away from home and fending for yourself in a fairly safe, low pressure environment such as university is perfect for the developing enterprising individual.

Infact, had i not gone to university i would never have aspired to what i now do regularly. I would be stuck in a job that i found boring and would never have met so many interesting people from such varied backgrounds.

Hope this wasn't all rambling and makes sense to you...!


Charlotte Carey said...

Thanks for your comments Pete. I will try and respond in more detail at a later date. Certainly there are similarities between sport and the arts. Talent (creates the differential) and appropriate management of that talent can make the difference between success and failure. I guess it's that in the creative industries people are frequently freelance and so self-managed so are we able to teach people to do that?

Pete said...

I think necessity teaches that. A certain type of creative people get bored of doing something very quickly and learn to focus because they have to.

I think 'creatives' might value what they do more highly than other people and so feel the need to prove it by being self-managed or frelance, or else they risk not earning (in all senses) what they believe they should.

Also, the difference between success and failure is usually in someone's head. What seems like a large crowd to one exhibitor might leave another bankrupt for being too small. If reputation is seen as success then one artist might look more favourably on living pennyless in the pursuit of it and might be viewed by the world as being a 'loser', yet be the happiest guy alive. A footballer who earns hundred's of thousands of pounds a week and lives the type of life many aspire to might hate living in a foreign country, being away from his family and stuck in the media spotlight.