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In 2010 in an IBM Global CEO study creativity was highlighted as the most Important Leadership skill by 1 541 CEOs, general managers, and senior public sector leaders who represent different sizes of organizations in 60 countries and 33 industries.

Chief executives believe that — more than rigor, management discipline, integrity or even vision — successfully navigating an increasing complex world will require creativity

From an article in FastCompany back in 2010, here’s the picture of most important qualities from the 2010 IBM study….

creativity poll study ibm traits charactersitics leadership creative

By 2012 ‘creativity’ had slipped down to 3rd place on the IBM CEO Global Study

creativity poll study ibm traits charactersitics leadership creative

The 2015 IBM Global CEO Study seems to have shifted what it’s looking for from CEO’s. But looking at the quotes that are used in one of the papers to come out of it, from a variety of CEO’s, it seems obvious that creativity must be pretty high up the list of priorities, because I’m not sure how else they’ll get through successfully without a very big dose of it?

ceo leadership quotes


As I pointed out in my post last week, creativity has been on the decline since at least 1984 in some countries. That means that people entering the workplace from around the end of the 90’s are less creative than their older counterparts. With no sign of a reversal in the ‘creative quotient’ it seems to me that there should be a premium paid for anyone with above average creativity in the workplace?

The world is a complex and unpredictable place to do business in, and rightly, CEO’s globally know that creativity is a critical skill and attribute to have inside of their organisations. There is an enormous need to pay attention to increasing the levels of creativity, from our children in school all the way through to the most senior levels of organisations, companies and government.