Disentangling the Creative Process: an Examination of Differential Antecedents and Outcomes for Specific Process Elements

Gerben Tolkamp*, Tim Vriend, Bart Verwaeren, Roni Reiter-Palmon, Bernard Nijstad

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

Building on theories of sensemaking, this study demonstrates the importance of disentangling the creative process. Specifically, we show that the specific elements of the creative process (problem construction, information search and encoding, and idea generation) are differentially related to both antecedents and specific types of creative outcomes. Using survey data from employees and their supervisors from a wide variety of organizations, we found that leader creative expectations were more strongly related to idea generation than to problem construction and to information search and encoding. Job autonomy, in contrast, was significantly related to problem construction, but not to information search and encoding or idea generation. Furthermore, we found that although idea generation is positively related to both radical and incremental creativity, problem construction is only positively related to radical creativity. We discuss implications for the study of creative processes and creativity more generally.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Business and Psychology
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 25-Mar-2022

Keywords

  • Employee creativity
  • Creative process
  • Sensemaking
  • Job autonomy
  • Leader creative expectations
  • COMMON METHOD VARIANCE
  • INTRINSIC MOTIVATION
  • EMPLOYEE CREATIVITY
  • PSYCHOLOGICAL EMPOWERMENT
  • WORKPLACE CREATIVITY
  • INNOVATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • WORK
  • LEADERSHIP
  • MODEL
  • ORGANIZATIONS

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