A songwriter can write an original song, but she doesn’t invent new notes. A painter can paint an original painting, but he doesn’t invent the colors. A writer can write an original story, but she doesn’t invent new letters. A chef can cook an original dish, but he doesn’t invent new food.
What these artists are doing, in effect, is taking the ingredients available to them and making choices. Choices that combine elements in new ways. Choices that are often brilliant…choices that create finished pieces that are unheard of, unseen, never before imagined and original.
I could keep going with the examples (bosses create new teams, for example, but they don’t invent people), but I’ll go ahead and shift it to meetings. The task set before us in the meeting industry is to take the elements available to us, and create a new experience.
I like to think we’re a little luckier than a writer who only has 26 letters, because we have a seemingly infinite number of ‘things’ to choose from in the meeting creation process: every color, every song, every video style, every speaker, every stage material, every type of light, every word for the meeting’s theme, every shape, every symbol, every image…
So, the strategy and tactic building portions of our work is where we sit in our workshop. With all of our client’s ingredients spread out before us. And we create. Not by inventing new things (why would we do that when experts are busy combining their elements to give us Velcro, plasma screens and LED lights?). But by putting them together in ways that are new. And extraordinary.
A designer makes choices. Those choices can be ground-breaking.