I was very fortunate to attend the Art of Marketing, Vancouver today and was thrilled to see David Usher open the event with his keynote and musical performance. David shared some insights on creativity this morning. One of the big moments when he said that organizations do not change but people do. David happens to be a singer, entrepreneur and even writes for the Huffington post.
David came from simple beginnings and his day kept him grounded. He remembered a time when his day said while you may have mad some songs you are not a scientist. This happened to drive him to harness the power of creativity. Creativity is a learnable skills and any company can do it. Everyone has the ability to be creative because it is 95% work and 5% inspiration. David decided to cross the 4th wall of separation and speak to the audience off the stage. He was very interactive and even decided to get some audience participation.
David encouraged the audience to welcome unexpected outcomes. As humans we face resistance and fear as our major obstacles to being creative. Most people like to follow rules because they keep us safe. Some people wait for the perfect time and space to take initiative however the perfect conditions for creativity does not exist. Life gives humans experience and expertise but this can often gives us tunnel vision. He encourages us to open up and start engaging and experiment with ideas and try to creative a collision. Criticism can be a creative process. David mentioned how he was inspired to write the song black black heart after he listened to Eminem perform Stan.
David encouraged the audience to cultivate and create a culture of creative processes by taking risks. He mentioned while he had fears on putting himself out there he has faith in his curiosity. He follows his instincts and does what he love when his media company is used by major brands. He shared how the Vancouver Canucks used some of his content aggregators. He also shared how he created a platform for artists to donate songs for members signing up to Amnesty International. Through practise and trial and error some of the risks turned into huge successes for him.
David reminded everyone that it is important to surround yourself with people of influence and inspiration. He recommended building a network, harnessing relationships and partnerships. He referenced these people as the crazy people in the room that dreams of pink elephants. He said he has a great crap filter. His biggest take away was hand grenades and hand pipes (Inside joke)
As far as his speaking skills he demonstrated that a good speaker does not follow a script as every audience reaction can vary. It was a great start to the morning with a ton of audience engagement and David seemed like a very friendly and approachable speaker.
There was a bit of irony for me was when I heard David Usher sing Black Black Heart. It was the first song I heard on the radio when I first immigrated to Canada on the day I arrived in Vancouver. It was playing on the radio on the cab ride into Vancouver.
Check out this 360 view of the conference room with over 1800 attendees