Collaborating with Creative Peers

by Kimberly D. Elsbach, Brooke Brown-Saracino, and Francis J. Flynn

NOT LONG AGO, in the course of studying new product development, we were witnesses to a breakdown in the creative collaboration process. A toy company needed a hit offering for the next holiday shopping season. Early on, a marketer we’ll call Kyle came to a meeting where one of the company’s most talented game developers was previewing a car-and-racetrack game concept. During the discussion, Kyle piped up with his advice: “It needs some kind of creature.” The developer paid little attention. If anything, he resented the feedback from someone who had no expertise in creative design.

But the marketer’s intuition was sound. Several weeks later, ...

Get HBR's 10 Must Reads on Creative Teams Collection (7 Books) now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.