The Highlands Company Blog

Idea Productivity in the Workplace

high and low idea light bulbs

Do you hate brainstorming sessions? Or do you enjoy throwing ideas at the wall to see what sticks?

In this post in our series on Natural Abilities In Real Life, we are looking at another Driving Ability called Idea Productivity, which is the rate at which you generate ideas and alternatives.

Remember, Driving Abilities are the abilities that push you to action. There are five Driving Abilities measured by the Highlands Ability Battery, and they all work together to shape how you think, make decisions, and problem solve.

What High and Low Idea Productivity Look Like?

idea productivity natural abilityIt’s straightforward. If you take the Highlands Ability Battery and see you have High Idea Productivity, it’s easy for you to generate ideas quickly. That doesn’t mean your ideas are always good…it just means you have a lot of them.

For those with Low Idea Productivity, you generate fewer ideas, but your focus on a single idea is greater. Again, Idea Productivity (IP) is shaped by where you land on the four other Drivers, but for simplicity, we will only focus here on IP.

IP can interfere with listening and focusing as someone with high IP may be buzzing with ideas internally. If that same person is an Extrovert, forget about it. They’ll find it hard to contain themselves in a meeting.

Examples of Low and High Idea Productivity

idea productivity continuumCharles, a manager in a large firm, has low IP. Generating new alternatives easily and swiftly is not his strength. His strength lay in tracking what the client is saying, then relying on the client to generate alternative actions. Charles then creates conditions (e.g., homework assignments, target goals, etc.) to reach the objective.

Samantha, a business leader, is high in IP and has been described by colleagues as “creating upheaval.” She often leaves everyone in the room in the dust, and members of various teams have started to resent her contributions. If she is to lead, she needs to bring folks on board with a vision she can clearly “sell.” She could also use her High IP as a way to validate and encourage others.

To find out if you have Low or High Idea Productivity, consider taking the Highlands Ability Battery, which measures all of your natural abilities.

Thank you to Highlands Certified Consultant Tom Tavantzis for sharing the Idea Productivity examples for this article.