Creativity with Fredrik Härén
One of the new stars in creativity and innovation, Fredrik Härén has been invited to deliver more than 1500 speeches and workshops in more than fifty countries. A Swedish “Speaker of the Year,” Fredrik uses humor and a powerful presentational style to explain to audiences the importance of creativity and how everyone is more creative than they think.
SPEAKING.COM: You are called “The Global Conference Speaker.” What does that mean?
Härén: A global (or international) conference is different from other conferences. When the delegates come from all over the world, you need a speaker who has experience speaking to people from different countries, cultures, and backgrounds.
I have been invited to speak in more than 60 countries on 6 continents, and I spoke in 32 different countries just last year. That means I know how to deliver a speech that is as inspiring and interesting to a Chinese business person as it is to an American, a German, or a Singaporean business person. I do not adjust my speech to an international audience. My speeches are written from the ground up with the intention that they will be delivered to a global audience.
SPEAKING.COM: How can individuals use creativity to become more successful in their lives and careers?
Härén: I guess we can say there are only two ways to become better at something:
a) To become better at doing what we do now.
b) To come up with a way that is better than what we do now.
Companies are usually very good at getting people to become better at doing what we do now, but they spend way too little time, effort and resources on teaching their employees on how to come up with better ways of doing things. And most people would rank their own ability to be creative as very low. Now, imagine a company (or a person) that was really good at coming up with much better ways of doing things. The power in increased creativity is amazing.
SPEAKING.COM: What are some of the ways that creativity from developing countries is going to change the world?
Härén: We are already starting to see it. I particularly like when people in developing countries come up with solutions to problems that use fewer resources or cost less than the solutions we have developed in the West.
SPEAKING.COM: In your book One World. One Company, you say that companies need to become global when conducting business. Why is this so important?
Härén: People say that the 21st Century belongs to Asia. I say the 21st century is “the global century.” We are now seeing companies that are transforming themselves from “international companies” to what I call “Truly Global Companies,” and that is a totally different type of organization. A truly global company will be much more effective, productive, innovative, and competitive than an international, or multinational company.
SPEAKING.COM: As research for your book One World. One Company, you traveled to over 20 countries interviewing professionals who work for professional organizations. What were some of the most surprising revelations?
Härén: How strong the will is within many international companies to take the next step and become truly global; but how challenging they find it to do so. And how people in the “home country” of these companies many times did not understand how frustrated employees from other countries were with the “home country” getting perks and advantages.
SPEAKING.COM: What is the theme of your next book?
Härén: It is still in its early research days, but the working title is The Kodak Moment. It deals with the question of change and disruptions, not from the point of view of the “disruptors,” but from the point of view of the companies that got disrupted. For example, how Kodak missed the change to digital cameras, even though they invented the digital camera, or what recently happened to Nokia when smart phones by Apple and Google changed the mobile business.
So many industries are seeing disruptive change right now, and it is very important to be able to see the change, understand it, and react to it. They need to not change too early and not change too late. I think we can learn a lot from the people and companies that failed to change at the right time.
To bring Fredrik Härén to your organization to inspire creativity and innovation in your business, please contact Michael Frick at: Mike@Speaking.com.
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