I just arrived back from two days of FourSight Certification Training and thought I’d share a little bit of the experience. I got some initial exposure to FourSight’s work at a workshop at the State of Creativity Forum this past November in Oklahoma. That was enough for us to pursue the full certification course so we could
deploy the assessment in our district’s Innovation Initiative.
At heart, FourSight’s Certification training teaches people how to administer and debrief their FourSight assessment, which is a brief, 36-question survey that highlights one’s preferences towards each of the four stages of the creativity process. These four stages are well known to those in the creativity field (Clarifying the Problem, Generating Ideas, Developing Solutions, and Implementation), but what makes the assessment so valuable is that it identifies individual and group preferences for each of the four stages. As I’ve found in the two months since I took the assessment, this knowledge enables a person to work more effectively when engaged in creative work. FourSight’s work is strongly supported by years of academic research largely spearheaded by Gerard Puccio, Ph.D., director of the International Center for Studies in Creativity at the State University of New York College at Buffalo.
I can’t say enough about the benefits the two-day session provided. It’s clear that the FourSight staff cares deeply about their work and helping customers. All five staff members at the training went out of their way to engage me about my plans for implementing the tool, and made it clear that they would continue to support my work well after the session ended. The entire organization feels more like a family than a business, and their passion for their cause is reflected in everything they do. They sincerely enjoy their work as well, and the vibe of the two-day training was upbeat and fun. I learned a ton, and feel more confident in my ability to successfully bring the content to our organization.
In addition to the assessment focus, the training also delved into a toolset for improving both individual and group effectiveness at any stage of the creative process. Much of the practice and training is hands on, where you work through a task, then reflect and analyze performance in light of the skills just studied. I particularly liked The Innovation Station, which is a deceptively simple yet powerful method for structuring creativity in order to enhance it.
While we’re just in the initial stages of bringing this work to our district, after two days of training, I’m quite excited to get going with this. We’ll be initially rolling out the assessment to our 15 Innovation Coaches, with perhaps a wider range of administrators taking the assessment in the near future. Our Innovation Coaches are constantly managing projects, and we’re hopeful that the insights the assessment provides will enable them to further improve their ability to work both individually and as a team. Also, I’m particularly interested in incorporating this information into a Performance Character Course for high school students that I’m currently building.
I’ll be providing updates as we move forward!