LEGO, Nottingham University Business School, entrepreneur, research, creative, competitive, human factors

June 13, 2018, by The Ingenuity Lab

Creative competitiveness

Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do, and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.

– George S. Patton, U.S. General


What kind of an entrepreneur are you?

How would you react to being provided with a box of LEGO, a group of strangers and 15 minutes to answer a creative brief?  This question revealed some very interesting results when researchers from the Nottingham University Business School carried out some on the ground research last week in the Ingenuity Lab.

Wearable sensor technology

Benjamin Lucas (Assistant Professor in the N-LAB at Nottingham University Business School) and Elena Francu (Associate at Nottingham University Business School) ran an experiment involving small teams completing a creative LEGO building task.  Participants were monitored using newly developed wearable sensor technology, capturing information about participant proximity and tone-of-voice. The goal of the study is to explore the different ways in which people from innovation communities interact with one another in situations of ‘competitive creativity’.

Measuring creative human factors

The resulting LEGO creations show just what a wide variety of results were produced from the brief to ‘create a form of transport capable of carrying goods and people’.  Even more interesting were the human factors involved in the interactions in teams.  In a roomful of ‘natural leaders’ how do teams collaborate and work together successfully?  How long should one spend planning – at the risk of not achieving a final result?  Does the social interactivity benefit the end goal or detract from achieving an idea?  How much does the group interpretation of a creative task differ from the interpretations of the individuals?

This was just one in a series of experiments and data collection Benjamin and his colleagues are undertaking as part of the project, let’s hope they’re all as much fun as this!  If you want to learn more about the projects in the Nottingham University Business School, visit the N-Lab here.

To learn more about how your own creative ideas or entrepreneurial skills can be enhanced and developed, why not sign up as a Member of the Ingenuity Lab here.

Posted in The Ingenuity Lab