How One Of Google’s Finest Fosters The Big Ideas

HOW ONE OF GOOGLE’S FINEST FOSTERS THE BIG IDEAS

AS CHIEF CREATIVE OFFICER FOR GOOGLE CREATIVE LABS, IT’S ROBERT WONG’S JOB TO LIVE AND BREATH INSPIRATION. FROM HOW HE FINDS HIS TO HOW HE ENCOURAGES HIS PEOPLE TO ATTAIN THEIRS, HE TELLS US THE BEST WAYS TO FEED CREATIVITY.

BY SAMANTHA COLE

The “poetry of a moment,” says Robert Wong, is often in the restraint.

Whether he’s giving his team near-impossible puzzles to solve in no time or hosting endless brainstorming sessions, boxing in a creative mind is his best innovation catalyst.

“I think more limits actually forces more creativity,” says Wong, one of Google’s top creative officers. He gives his people “no time at all to solve big problems” to avoid over thinking, and turns brainstorming sessions into timed sprints toward the edge of the nonsensical.

“They just go with the flow, where they have to solve it … and then that’s when the creativity has to kick in,” he says.

When he’s truly stumped, Wong takes a walk to let his subconscious ruminate on the problem. He doesn’t just sit around waiting for inspiration to land: Hits like the “Parisian Love” Superbowl ad and Arcade Fire’s Chrome project, “The Wilderness Downtown,” didn’t just land in his lap.

“A lot of people talk about it like you sit, and you just be creative,” he says. But Wong believes it’s a combination of getting space and getting down to business. “I think that most of the time the best thing to generate creativity is just like being confronted with an interesting problem. You know, a problem that you actually want to solve.”

 

About bambooinnovator
Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (www.heroinnovator.com), the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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