corporate creativity & innovation
Fine in theory, but different in reality! © 2006 David M. Weeks.
9. Corporate defences triggered!   corporate degfence against creativity
During the summer months David made progress on the business creativity web site (mental athletics programme). By September he was in a position to try out a pilot site. This needed the support of IT Net Services.
David was ahead of the game in terms of the company intranet having set his own standard. But the look and feel of his site was radically different from anything that existed at that time. But then he figured a site about business creativity should stand out and be different from a corporate standard design.

David foresaw that a clash could occur and ensured that his key stakeholders (the CEO, the IT director) were fully aware of potential obstacles. Large organisations feel that they must follow the corporate standard flag. He send two e-mails - one requesting that his site become visible to the organisation and another as an insurance telling his sponsor what was happening.

creativity & innovation diary From: Weeks, David
To: Sadnews, Martin
Subject: Creativity web site
Date: 15 September 1998 16:46


As this site has now reached a stage when I would like to pilot it, I need to be able to copy it to the development area. I would then give selected people the relevant web address.
How do I get the relevant privileges to do this?


David insured his request by keeping his sponsors informed along the way…

creativity & innovation diary From: Weeks, David
Sent: 15 September 1998 04:54 PM
To: Davison, Ian; Willington Jac
Subject: Creativity web site

Ian, Jac

I have now reached a stage where I am ready to pilot this web site. The three areas - (Intro, assessment and techniques ) are now ready for trial.

As you saw at our presentation, the look and feel is rather different than the corporate standard. Therefore, actual publication to a test area of the intranet will be the first test of 'thinking outside the box.' I may need your support to do this! We'll see.


It didn't take long for the corporate defences mechanisms to kick in !

creativity & innovation diary From: Sadnews, Martin
Sent: 17 September 1998 02:26 PM
To: Weeks, David
Subject: Creativity web site


Thanks for your e-mail. Having viewed your site, I brought it to the attention of the Intranet Steering Group, which oversees strategy developments for

I have to inform you that Chick Naloner (Director, Corporate Affairs) and Reith Kichbell (Director, Group Money Transmission Strategy) decided that no site - including your own - can be published without being designed according to the Web Design Standards.

I understand that such a conversion would be a major undertaking, but it is considered vital to have a standard look and feel if users are to access information quickly. Over the coming months, many sites are likely to be launched on with thousands if not millions of pages becoming available to the user. Without any guidance to web publishers, chaos would undoubtedly ensue.

For your information, the Web design standards are available on the Net Services site. You may also find it helpful to know that a two-day course is available which explains how to use FrontPage 97 - the chosen web publishing tool for the intranet - and how our corporate standards work. We will however need the agreement from the owner of the site where your information will be located before you attend the course and before we can publish your site (I understand that you are already in contact with Sunita Perrigan about locating your site in the Archimedes area).

Please don't hesitate to contact me if you require more information.


Intranet Steering Group minutes - 14 Sept

Item 16. Intranet content

It was agreed that the development of David Weeks' site would be halted as this was not a corporate site and could therefore not be displayed on the intranet. MB to advise.
The proposed Fantasy Football site would be referred to the Sports & Social web site. MB to contact Amanda Wiggins. CC suggested a possible competition to allow staff to become creative on web sites with a prize for the best site. MO'H to look into this

What a farce - chaos - what are they talking about? My navigation as you will see if you try the Mental Athletics Programme is very simple. Makes you wonder whether they really looked at it.

And the whole issue is very ironic - that a Fantasy Football site might get precedence over a business creativity site and that the memo actually mentioned creativity!
But David was ready and phoned Martin to explain that his mail was being forwarded to the Chief Executive. Things were hotting up. Who's poker hand would win? Would a small cog be able to influence a big corporate wheel?

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