Rhetorical Analysis Assignment

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Purpose & Audience

  • To develop your understanding of rhetoric by investigating how a writer constructed a professional document or text in your major field
  • To practice analytical thinking and clear writing[1]

Audience: Your instructor, your classmates, and other faculty members on the ENGL & LLD 100A review committee.
Writing Steps
Step 1: Select a document to analyze
Choose a piece of writing that was written by a professional in your major or a field that is closely related to your major. The text should be at least 3 pages long so that you will have enough material to analyze and write about.
These writings may include, but are not limited to:

  • Academic and trade publications (journals, newsletters, articles)
  • Company web sites (Internet and Intranet)
  • Professional society web sites (e.g., Federal or State Bar Association, the National Association of State Foresters, Society for Technical Communication, etc.)
  • Internal correspondence (the audience is within the same company or organization as the writer), for example: memos, policy & procedure documents, reports such as audit reports, project status reports, proposals, lab reports, etc.
  • External correspondence (the audience is outside the same company or organization as the writer), for example: letters or reports to customers or vendors, sales or marketing materials, external blogs, newsletters, etc.

Note:   There are many sample documents available on the web.  Use a Google search to find these in your discipline.  You can also ask people you know who are working in your major field for a document they may have written.  Ask your professors in your major courses for suggestions as well.
Step 2: Analyze the paper you selected
As a preliminary step, before you actually write the first draft of your paper, try to answer the following questions about the document you are analyzing:

  • What do you think was the author’s purpose in producing this writing?
  • Who was the intended audience?
  • What genre does it represent?
  • What style and tone did the author use? (formal, informal)
  • What rhetorical appeals did the writer use? (ethos, pathos, and logos—these terms will be explained in class)
  • What strategies were used to develop ideas? (description, narration, process analysis, compare and contrast, cause and effect, etc.)
  • How is the text organized, and why do you think the author chose this particular organizational pattern? Is there a particular format that is used?
  • Why do you think the author included or omitted particular information?
  • What kinds of evidence did the author include to support his/her point of view, and how was that evidence used?

Step 3:  Decide which rhetorical appeals and strategies you will focus on in your paper.  A writer might use many appeals and strategies, but some are more important than others in achieving the writer’s purpose.  So you need to be selective; choose those that you think are the most important (or most interesting) and write about them in your body paragraphs.
Step 4: Write your first draft (see “Suggested Organization”).
Step 5: Participate in Peer Review of First Draft
On the day of the peer review, bring to class the following:

  • A copy of your first draft (approximately 1300 words single-spaced; see “Suggested Organization”)
  • A copy of the document that you analyzed
  • A copy of the peer review form

Step 6: Write the Second Draft for Teacher Conference
Use the feedback from your peer reviewer to guide you as you revise and create a second draft. When you come to the conference, bring the following:

  • A copy of the paper that you analyzed
  • Your second draft (aim for 1500 words)
  • Your peer reviewer’s comments

Step 7: Write and submit the Third Draft (in most cases, this will be the Final Draft)
Using the feedback you got from your instructor, revise your paper and submit it to Turnitin.com or Canvas (depending on your instructor).   Please follow the format guidelines given below.
Suggested Organization of your Paper
Write an introductory paragraph with several sentences that do the following:

  • Introduce the paper you plan to analyze. Identify the author and describe the circumstances under which the paper was written. (You may have to guess based on the content and purpose.) Give the full title of the paper, when it was written and who was the intended audience.  Describe what you think was the writer’s purpose: What did he/she want to achieve? What do you think the author wanted the reader to think or do after reading this paper?
  • Identify the rhetorical appeals and strategies used by the author, and identify those that you plan to discuss in your analysis (preview statement). Note that you do not have to discuss in depth all of the strategies the author uses.

Each paragraph in the body should have its own topic sentence and a unified focus. For this analysis, you could write one paragraph on each of the rhetorical appeals/strategies you mentioned in the introduction. In each of these body paragraphs, it is useful to:

  • Define the rhetorical appeal/strategy you are going to write about (you may quote or paraphrase from your course readings)
  • Quote or paraphrase 2-3 examples from the paper that illustrate the use of that appeal/strategy
  • Explain how or why the example illustrates the appeal/strategy and how the appeal/strategy contributed to author’s purpose

The purpose of the conclusion is to (a) summarize briefly the main points of your analysis and (b) explain the significance of your analysis by considering the following questions:

  • What conclusions can you draw about the role in general of rhetorical appeals and strategies in pro­ducing clear communication through writing?
  • Was the author successful in using the various rhetorical appeals and strategies for the intended audience and purpose? Give examples.
  • What changes might you recommend to the author to better achieve his/her purpose?

Format Guidelines

  • Your final draft should be approximately 1500 words, with 1-inch margins and 12 point font, single spaced, Times Roman font. Double space between paragraphs; use headings and subheadings for the sections to guide the reader.  Please number your pages.
  • The final draft of the report is to be submitted on Turnitin.com (or Canvas).
  • Make sure you save your document as a Word document. The file name should be as follows:  Last Name, First name – RA.doc,  g. Jones, Mary – RA.doc (or instructor’s preference)

Things to Keep For Your Portfolio

  • A copy of this assignment sheet
  • A copy of the document that you chose to analyze.
  • All drafts produced for this assignment.
  • A copy of instructor comments and peer reviews on your earlier drafts.
  • A clean (unmarked) copy of your final draft

Important Dates

First draft due (1300 words min); Mandatory peer review  
Mandatory conference with instructor and bring a 2nd draft based on peer review (1400 words min)  
Semi-Final  draft due on Canvas or Turnitin (1500 words)  

[1] This assignment has been adapted from a similar one developed by Julian Heather and Fiona Glade at CSU Sacramento.
4, XIX, 2016 33
Business Administration and Management
DOI: 10.15240/tul/001/2016-4-003
Creativity is a very important aspect of market
economy. Some scholars (Howkins, 2007;
Florida, 2002) are absolutely enthusiastic about
creativity that should give a competitive priority
in respect of the competitors. Nevertheless,
creativity also raises many problems in
management of it from feeling of guilty to threat
against identity of organization. In general,
creativity is an ambivalent and contradictory
phenomenon that covers both positive and
negative aspects. As a result, management of
creativity faces some paradoxes. The main aim
of this paper is to describe these paradoxes.
Another aim is to present the different
approaches towards creativity management.
Finally, the paper seeks to dethrone a naive
attitude that creativity in economy solves all
possible problems. The biggest challenge to the
management is the very creativity.
In the fi rst chapter I will present different
concepts of creativity and innovation in the
perspective of management. In the second
chapter I will analyze ten paradoxes of creativity
management including one grand and nine
minor paradoxes.
1. Creativity and Innovation in the
Perspective of Management
Some scholars (Pečiulis, 2015; Reimeris,
2016) speak about contemporary society as
a creative one. The understanding of creativity
has an evolution from the concept of genius to
the concept of creative systems (Černevičiūtė,
2014). Creativity has been treated in different
ways from the perspectives of different
sciences (Barevičiūtė, 2014). Besides this,
understandings of creativity depend on different
cultural environments (Klimczuk, 2014;
Pruskus, 2015). Table 1 shows the defi nitions
of creativity in the context of management. It is
an example how certain context changes the
understanding of a phenomenon. On the one
hand, the intention to manage helps to narrow
and understand the phenomenon of creativity.
On the other hand, this context like any other
presupposes the variety of defi nitions. The
managers treat creativity as a function of work
(Amabile, 1998; Arndt et al., 1999; Drazin et
al., 1999), of the novel products (Ford & Gioia,
2000; Amabile, 1988; Zhou & Shalley, 2010),
of social activity (Ford & Gioia, 2000; Arndt
et al., 1999), of divergent thinking and idea
generations (Amabile, 1996; Paulus, 2000;
Amabile, 1983), of cognition and judgement
(Rank et al., 2004; Amabile, 1982; Ford & Gioia,
2000), of relationship between an individual and
his (her) environment (Anderson et al., 2014;
Ford & Gioia, 2000; Drazin et al., 1999).
Table 2 shows the impact of creativity
in a micro environment (in an organization).
Besides this, the perspective of management
supplements the concept of creativity with
the specifi c characteristics. The impact of
creativity is not always positive speaking both
– about social connections and about individual
feelings. The scholars pay attention to the fact
that an individual creativity threatens to the
social connections (Arndt et al., 1999; Storr,
1972). Additionally, creativity provokes not
only a rejection and criticism (Sutton, 2001),
but also the confl icts in an organization (Jung
& Lee, 2015). Finally, creativity causes feeling
of guilt (Arndt et al., 1999) or can lead to selfdestruction
(Storr, 1972). As a result, it could
be said that the positive aspects of creativity
are inseparable from its negative factors.
That is why the scholars speak about the
complex interactions (Anderson et al., 2014)
of creativity. Another source of complexity is
the double nature of creativity that is directed
towards the social environment, although it
stems as the individual aspirations that in
Tomas Kačerauskas
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34 2016, XIX, 4
Ekonomika a management
turn are inseparable from the social world.
It is not enough to say that the organizations
need a balance between convergent (logical)
and divergent (imaginative) thinking (Basadur
& Hausdorf, 1996; Chen et al., 2015), between
search and creativity (Alexander, 1979) or
even between creativity and not creativity
(Bilton, 2015). The idea of balance or harmony
is inseparable from the idea of comfortable
climate in an organization. However, the
creative decisions are the results of discomfort,
stress or crisis and provoke intolerance, anger
or ignorance. The social ties in a comfortable
organization could be called micro social capital
that exterminates a micro creative capital as
possibility of the creative ideas. Florida (2002)
speaks about the clash between social capital
and creative capital. Nevertheless, Florida is not
consequent by rising tolerance as one of three
Ts (beside technology and talent) characteristic
to creative class. Technology and creativity has
been interwined but not necessary in a positive
way (Kanišauskas, 2016).
On the other hand, the so called
harmonic relations often hide an authoritarian
management that suppresses any creativity.
So the Platonic (to be precise, Pythagorean)
idea of harmony is inconsistent with creative
dynamics in an organization and could lead to
its collapse because of stagnation of the social
relations that lead to a defi cit of new ideas
within it. It is not about a kind of management
of creativity – hard one or soft one. Florida
(2002) sees only this aspect of management
by advocating so called soft management.
Sometimes, we need to make very diffi cult
decisions to provoke the creative ideas. Sutton
(2001) calls for hiring the persuasive heretics
and for fi ghting between people within an
organization. The management of creativity
should be creative too. In other words, it should
be both unexpected but still having a clear
strategy. Greene (2007) speaks about the
different war strategies including the area of
management. However, the clear managerial
strategy does not mean the obtrusion of certain
tactical ways. On the contrary, these ways
should be open for the experiments even if
they lead to the failures. That is why Amabile
(1988) and Sutton (2001) suggest rewarding
Description References
A subjective judgment Amabile, 1982
The generation of “original and useful ideas” Amabile, 1983
Idea generation Amabile, 1996
A function of the components as follows: expertise, creative-thinking skills,
motivation (intrinsic and extrinsic) Amabile, 1998
The joint novelty and usefulness of ideas regarding
products, processes and services
Amabile, 1988;
Zhou & Shalley, 2010
A complex interaction between the individual and his (her) work environment
(organization) Anderson et al., 2014
Characterized by the creative work as original one, i. e. different from what
others have done; the case of subculture Arndt et al., 1999
A critical process necessary for individuals, groups and organizations faced
with complex and interdependent work Drazin et al., 1999
A social activity within particular contexts Ford & Gioia, 2000
A multidimensional phenomenon that depends on different processes, an
area of subjective judgment Ford & Gioia, 2000
The divergent thinking with the attributes as follows: fl uency, fl exibility,
originality, and elaboration Paulus, 2000
Involving primarily intra-individual cognitive processes Rank et al., 2004
Source: own
Tab. 1: Defi nitions of creativity in the context of management
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4, XIX, 2016 35
Business Administration and Management
even the failure by reserving punishment
only for inaction. Often, inaction or imitation
of work is a result of authoritarian pressure
towards the tactical ways that are not open
to the workers. In general, managerial culture
should be rich (with clear strategy and open
tactics) and diverse (soft and hard) enough in
order to supports a constant contest for the new
winning ideas. The environment of creativity
is rather a climax of worry and competition or
even fi ghting instead of harmony and tolerance
that often hide authoritarian management and
inaction. A harmony should be a task but not
reality within a multi-colored work group. Not by
accident, the scholars (Stahl et al., 2009; Gilson
& Shalley, 2004; Staw, 1990) stress that the
most productive working groups consist of the
inconsistent members in different senses. What
concerns reality in such creative environment,
the most real things are the innovative ideas to
be implemented because of the fact that they
change the social (economic) order.
Table 3 shows the peculiarities of innovation
in the perspective of management. Creativity
is a very broad concept used to describe
very different human activities, fi rst of all art
and generation of ideas not necessary to be
implemented. On the contrary, innovation
deals with the idea implementation (Amabile,
1996; Kazanjian et al., 2000; Lane & Lup,
2015; Bledow et al., 2009; West, 2002) or idea
application (Bilton, 2015). Being such, the
innovation is a more social process comparing
with more or less individual creativity. It
appeals both to a collective creativity and to job
relationship within an organization. As a result,
the innovation is not such a vague object of
management as creativity. In other words, the
management of innovation could be a model
of management of creativity. Speaking about
management of creativity, many scholars have
in mind namely the innovation, i.e. the applied
2. Management of Creativity
Management of creativity covers the different
managerial practices including challenge,
freedom, resources, work-group features,
supervisory encouragement and organizational
support (Amabile, 1998). According to some
scholars (West, 1990), the management of
creativity presupposes a social environment of
a team and its factors such as rise of vision,
participative safety, task orientation, and support
for innovation. However, creativity appeals to
an individual activity or a tension between the
Characteristics References
An effective generation process combines both search and creativity within
a context that balances both Alexander, 1979
Communication of ideas as part of creative processes Amabile, 1996;
Gilson, 2001
Threatening social connection; feelings of guilt Arndt et al., 1999
Creativity in organization and divergent/convergent thinking Basadur & Hausdorf,
Dialectics of creativity and not creativity; ’not creativity’ as a “necessary
ballast“ Bilton, 2015
Divergent thinking as generating the ideas, imagination, and non-linear
thoughts Chen et al., 2015
Socializing as a positive factor for such aspects of creativity as a freer fl ow of
ideas, more brainstorming, and friendlier work environment Gilson & Shalley, 2004
Creativity as ”the combination of relationship confl ict and the relational self” Jung & Lee, 2015, p. 45
The irrational drive necessary to creative work can lead to the narcissistic,
anti-social or self-destructive behavior Storr, 1972
Rejection and criticism towards creative people confi dent in their work Sutton, 2001
Source: own
Tab. 2: Characteristics and impact of creativity in an organization
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36 2016, XIX, 4
Ekonomika a management
individual aspirations and the tasks of a team.
That is why fi rst of all a question arises how
to harmonize a principle of management and
a principle of creativity. Speaking about creativity,
we face indetermination and uncertainty that
could be compared with chaos. Additionally,
creativity brakes status quo including social
relations within an organization, provokes the
confl icts and feeling of guilt as we have seen
in the previous chapter. Finally, creativity
opens the unstable and unclear future for the
organization. It seems that the cost is too big
for a more or less successful organization with
the stable income. It is not strange that most of
managers do not tolerate any manifestation of
creativity that have associated with a revolution
against them personally and against welfare of
their organizations. In this sense, the innovation
has better prestige than creativity while the
fi rst could be better combined with managerial
practices. Here, we face another defi nition of
the innovation as creativity under control or
a compromise of chaotic creativity. On the other
hand, we can speak about fashion or even
mania of innovation routinized in a managerial
way. As a result, some scholars speak about
managerial orthodoxy as about ”dogmatic belief
in the power of innovation“ (Johnsen, 2015,
p. 63).
The aporia or paradox of creativity
management is as follows: „the employees
should systematically follow the instructions
of their managers. However, this prescription
fosters conformity rather than sparking new
initiatives“ (Johnsen, 2015, p. 63). In other
words, creativity management is a selfcontradiction
since management should control
and reduce the chaos associated with creativity.
By stimulating creativity, the managers risk to
provoke the disobedience for their instructions
including an instruction to develop creativity. We
can call this contradiction the major or grand
paradox of creativity management (GP). Having
in mind GP, the Hamel’s (2007) argument that
management can spark innovation is far from
being evident.
This paradox is especially sharp in so
called hard control that limits any initiative of
the employees. Florida (2002) pays attention
that the hard control eliminates any creativity
in the organization. However, sometimes all
the creativity needs is a “hard“ decision of the
managers, as mentioned above. Additionally,
we have the different managerial traditions
including paternalistic ones in the different
cultural environment around the world (Zhou,
2006). In general, we have the different
combinations of hard and soft control in different
environments and situations. Similarly, we have
the different models of democracy that is strong
because of this variety.
Besides this, we have another paradox that
could be called the fi rst minor paradox (MP1).
Creativity is the most actual during a period of
crisis within an organization. On the one hand,
successful period of an organization is an
obstacle to develop the creative ideas (Bilton &
Cummings, 2014) since the stability and safety
has more priority. Routine is an inevitable result
of successful present that in turn comes after
stormy past period of the creative ideas and their
implementation. On the other hand, creativity
Characteristics References
Represents inter-individual social processes in the workplace Rank et al., 2004
Idea implementation Amabile, 1996
The “application of a creative idea, typically towards new products,
new business models or management processes.” Bilton, 2015, p. 154-155
Entrepreneurial innovation as a destructive process Schumpeter, 1939
Novelty plus value Bilton, 2015, p. 157
Implementation effectiveness Kazanjian et al., 2000
Useful creative ideas after the process of their successful implementation Lane & Lup, 2015
Implementation but not just idea generation Bledow et al., 2009;
West, 2002
Source: own
Tab. 3: Defi nition of innovation in the context of management
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4, XIX, 2016 37
Business Administration and Management
is inseparable from destruction, uncertainty,
confl icts or even chaos as mentioned. In
other words, any organization should avoid it
in order to survive as a whole body. However,
one of most important conditions to survive
in the competition between the organizations
is namely creativity and innovation as its
implementation. In general, creativity destroys
the status quo relationships both inside an
organization (horizontal relationships) and
outside it (vertical relationships). The latter
ones are not only the existing commercial
interests of the sellers (producers) and the
consumers (Bilton & Cummings, 2014), but also
the value chains (Bilton, 2007) within a society.
In other words, creativity confuses the social
order or even cleans the social board for new
relationships. It could be compared with the
procedure of bracketing in phenomenology:
we take the content of our consciesness in the
brackets for the sake of new content.
The question of management also asks
how to implement the creative ideas – step
by step, by using the subtle and incremental
changes (Bilton & Cummings, 2014) or by
using the radical decisions with failures and
mentioned risks (Sutton, 2011). This leads to
a paradox too. It could be called the second
minor paradox (MP2) or the paradox of
innovation. If we choose a way step by step we
avoid the undesirable secondary effects such
as confl icts or disorder in the organization but
we lose a strategic advantage in respect of
the competitors. If we choose a radical way it
threatens to the very identity of an organization.
It sounds also paradoxically, but the situation of
an organization should be really bad in order to
take the radical decisions. And vice versa, the
biggest obstacles towards the innovations are
the good results of the organization.
The third minor paradox (MP3) of creativity
management is as follows: by increasing
creativity in an organization we increase
the probability of the confl ict, disorder and
disharmony within it. Often a microsocial confl ict
in an organization follows from the situation
when “a minority in the team publicly opposes
the beliefs, attitudes, ideas, procedures, or
policies assumed by the majority of the team”
(McLeod et al., 1997). According to Lane and
Lup (2015), tensions and contradictions in
managing of creativity lead to organizational
success. Additionally, the structural solutions
could be evaluated as a way to split and place
the contradictory tasks (ibid). As mentioned,
creativity destroys the status quo. Although
some scholars (Bilton & Cummings, 2014)
openly call for such destroy in order to form new
environment, it does not guarantee any new
order. Even in the case of successful innovation
the success could be (and usually is) an apple
of discord. We can remember the peripeteias of
S. Jobs’ career in Apple Company. In general,
creativity management is inseparable from
confl ict management (Gelfand et al., 2008;
Hoever et al., 2012; Tekleab & Quigley, 2014;
Nijstad et al., 2014; Jung & Lee, 2015; Chen
et al., 2015). MP3 has one more aspect. On
the one hand, there is a need of higher level
of creative entrepreneurs’ divergent thinking
in order to solve the interpersonal confl icts in
organization (Chen et al., 2015). On the other
hand, the divergent thinking increases the
possibility of the confl icts as nothing else. Here,
it is not enough to say in unproblematic way
that variety of information, skills and points of
view exchange ideas while working together
presupposes more novel solutions (Staw,
1990). The different versions of such adoration
of variety in a team we face in Howkins (2007)
and in Florida (2002). If MP1 deals with the
structure of an organization and MP2 appeals
to the technology of management, MP3 covers
the psychological aspects of the creativity
Besides the mentioned issues, we have
also the sociological aspects in creativity
management. On the one hand, creativity
is an individual activity while an outstanding
individual demonstrates the original solutions
and approach towards the problems. On the
other hand, it is a social activity in twofold
sense. First, even the most original ideals arise
in a social environment as in the background
of these outstanding ideas. Any inventor or
innovator is not alone both by being educated
in one or another way and by working in
a team. Second, the product of creativity
appeals to certain social environment (market
of consuming). We can call the innovation also
as socialization of creativity. As a result, we face
one more paradox as follows: every inventor
or innovator tries to negate his (her) social
environment that has educated and stimulated
him (her). It could be called forth minor paradox
As mentioned, the alternative between
hard and soft management is paradoxical, too.
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38 2016, XIX, 4
Ekonomika a management
Actually, creativity needs enough autonomy and
does not tolerate any hard control. However,
if we have soft control we do not have any
creativity, because of its ambivalent nature. It
could be said both about individual and social
creativity in a team. The history of art shows
that almost all masterpieces of art emerge after
an artist has the order to create it and certain
control of a customer. And vice versa, creativity
is impossible without certain freedom of activity
and especially without freedom of thinking. The
scholars (Oldham & Cummings, 1996; Zhou,
1998) stress job autonomy for experimenting
and exploring alternative ideas. Sutton (2001)
speaks about management of freedom and
gives an example of free idea generation on
Frydays at Coming’s Sullivan Park R&D lab.
As a result of this Fryday freedom, we have
invented genomics-technology ”that was
offi cially killed by the head of research but was
pursued in Fryday afternoon experiments.“
(Sutton, 2001, p. 100) A kind of hard control
is the hierarchical control that presupposes
the presence of an authority fi gure. Usually, it
makes a negative impact on idea generation
(Mullen, 1991). According to Shalley and
Gilson (2004), the hierarchical organizational
structures might discourage employees from
taking creative approaches to their work. Lane
and Lup (2015) call it “mimicria of autocratic
government“. If we remember Plato (1992)
any autocracy or tyranny fi nally leads to
a revolution, disorder and anarchy. We notice
it in different contemporary regimes around the
world. Usually, a development of the ideas in
the frame of a scientifi c or artistic school is also
a kind of safe but constricted activity in respect
of novelty. We should always choose between
obedience to our school and creative freedom
that threatens the sanctions of this school. Not
by accident, the most prominent artists have
been either outside any school (such as V. van
Gogh or M. K. Čiurlionis) or the fathers of them
(such as Picasso or S. Dali). Nevertheless, it
is already mentioned that the implementation
of the creative ideas needs sometimes very
hard decisions. This paradox of hard/soft
management also follows from GP and could
be called the fi fth minor paradox (MP5).
Additionally, we face the paradox of
negative feedback that is positively associated
with creative managerial decisions (Ford &
Gioia, 2000). In other words, the worse are
the results the more creative are the decisions
in organization. To be more precise, such
decisions should be because of the fact that the
decisions of the managers have been infl uenced
by many factors. Some of them (for example,
the authoritative management) simply block
creativity. However, even the defi cit of creativity
in management could be a challenge for changes
both in micro-environment of organization and in
ways of management. This paradox could be
called sixth minor paradox (MP6).
The seventh minor paradox (MP7) deals
with relationship between quantity and quality.
On the one hand, we need quantity in order to
develop creative quality. On the other hand,
the quantity negates the quality. We can speak
about this dialectics not only in respect of
production, but also in respect of the employees
and even of the managers. Should we manage
the quantity or quality? For example, Sutton
(2001) believes that namely quantity should be
managed since quality stems from the latter.
The eighth minor paradox (MP8) is about
relationship between knowledge and ignorance
(naiveté). It seems that the knowledge is
the base of any creativity. Sutton appeals to
a company’s knowledge in order to ”see old
problems in new ways“ and to ”break from the
past“ (2001, p. 96). However, the knowledge of
past success does not allow any new approach
towards the future. That is why we need not as
much knowledge as naiveté or even ignorance
in order to ”see-and perhaps solve-problems
from a new perspective“ (Sutton, 2001, p. 99).
In a broader context, Kuhn (1996) speaks
about the scientifi c revolutions implemented
either by the young scientists or by the scientist
from other areas. In other cases, they are
enough naive and ignorant, i.e. not ballasted
by traditional scientifi c approach, to see the
new ways. As a result, the companies need
not only management of knowledge, but
also management of ignorance and naiveté.
Speaking about the opposition of wisdom and
foolishness in organization, Izak (2013) appeals
namely to MP8.
Last but not least, we have the paradox of
time in creativity management. The scholars
speak about the contrast between “the possible
future (‘what could be’) and the present condition
(‘what is’)“ (Johnsen, 2015, p. 64), as well about
yesterday’s success that becomes the ”today’s
chronic malady in organizations“ (Johnsen,
2015, p. 62). That is why the scholars suggest
a planning of any activity in an organization.
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4, XIX, 2016 39
Business Administration and Management
However, the planning leads to other paradox
since creativity has usually been treated
as unexpected and spontaneous activity.
Nevertheless, the scholars discuss about the
infl uence of such planning skills as penetration
and forecasting on creative thought (Osburn
& Mumford, 2006, p. 173). Additionally, the
planning could be treated as a creative, i. e.
inherently generative activity involving the
mental simulation of future actions (Anzai, 1984;
Mumford et al., 2002; Noice, 1991). According to
Osburn and Mumford, ”planning may contribute
to creative thought through at least three
mechanisms: (a) promoting idea refi nement, (b)
promoting opportunistic exploitation of emergent
opportunities, and (c) stimulating the generation
of new ideas and approaches in an attempt
to overcome anticipated problems“ (Osburn
& Mumford, 2006, p. 174). Nevertheless,
the paradox of time could be deepened by
appealing to Heidegger (1996) who speaks
about our being towards death. Rephrasing
M. Heidegger, all that makes us creative is
our possible future collapse. The managers
should forget the past success of organization
and think about future end of it. In other words,
the future death of organization makes the
employees alive within it. The paradox of time
in management could be called the ninth minor
paradox (MP9).
Table 5 shows the specifi cation of all
mentioned paradoxes. However, the paradoxes
are intertwined with each other. In other words,
they walk not alone. For example, Jung and
Lee (2015) appeal to the past relationship
confl ict for the sake of creativity. This argument
covers MP3 and MP9. The discussions about
organizational ambidexterity and its ingredients
such as discipline, stretch, support and trust
(Gibson & Birkinshaw, 2004; Lane & Lup,
2015) appeal to MP4 and MP5. The argument
of Sutton (2001) that the managers should hire
the persuasive heretics in order to increase the
creative confl icts within organization appeals to
MP3 and MP8.
Management of creativity leads to the different
paradoxes that could be classifi ed into one
grand and nine minor paradoxes. The grand
paradox (GP) is about the contradiction between
the principle of management and creativity in
general. Usually, any management reduces
creativity since it requires following the rules of
an organization, i.e. to obey the work routine
that is inconsistent with creativity. In the case
of creativity stimulation, the managers risk to
provoke the disobedience for their instructions
including an instruction to develop creativity.
The minor paradoxes follow from GP and cover
Paradox Description
GP By stimulating creativity, the managers risk to provoke the disobedience for their
instructions including an instruction to develop creativity
MP1 Successful period of an organization is an obstacle to develop the creative ideas
MP2 A radical implementation of creative ideas threatens the identity of organization
MP3 Creativity provokes the confl icts in organization
MP4 Every inventor or innovator tries to negate his (her) social environment that has
educated and stimulated him (her)
MP5 Although hard management kills creativity, the latter needs sometimes very hard
MP6 The worse the results are, the more creative the decisions in organization are
MP7 Organizations should manage both quantity and quality
MP8 Organization needs not only management of knowledge but also management of
ignorance and naiveté
MP9 The managers should forget the past success of organization and think about future
end of it
Source: own
Tab. 4: The paradoxes of creativity management
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40 2016, XIX, 4
Ekonomika a management
the different aspects of mentioned contradiction
including the dangers both of successful past
and of identity, the creative confl icts, the social
environment, the hard decisions, equilibrium
between quantity and quality, ignorance and
naiveté, as well as future end of organization.
All this shows that creativity generates many
additional problems instead of giving only
a competitive advantage. As a result, we
should refuse naive enthusiasm concerning
management of creativity.
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Prof. Dr. Tomas Kačerauskas, Ph.D.
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Faculty of Creative Industries
Department of Philosophy and Communication
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4, XIX, 2016 43
Business Administration and Management
Tomas Kačerauskas
Creativity is a very important aspect of market economy. Creativity is an ambivalent and contradictory
phenomenon that covers both positive and negative aspects. As a result, management of creativity
faces some paradoxes. The paper deals with 10 paradoxes of creativity management including
one grand paradox (GP) and nine minor paradoxes (MP). By stimulating creativity, the managers
risk to provoke the disobedience for their instructions including an instruction to develop creativity
(GP). Successful period of an organization is an obstacle to develop the creative ideas (MP1).
A radical implementation of creative ideas threatens the identity of organization (MP2). Creativity
provokes the confl icts in organization (MP3). Every inventor or innovator tries to negate his (her)
social environment that has educated and stimulated him (her) (MP4). Although hard management
kills creativity, the latter needs sometimes very hard decisions (MP5). The worse the results are, the
more creative the decisions in organization are (MP6). Organizations should manage both quantity
and quality (MP7). Organization needs not only management of knowledge but also management
of ignorance and naiveté (MP8). The managers should forget the past success of organization
and think about future end of it (MP9). The main aim of this paper is to describe these paradoxes.
Another aim is to present the different approaches towards creativity management. Finally, the
paper seeks to dethrone a naive attitude that creativity in economy solves all possible problems.
The biggest challenge to the management is the very creativity.
Key Words: Creativity management, paradoxes, confl ict, organization, creative economy.
JEL Classifi cation: B5, J5, L2, M1.
DOI: 10.15240/tul/001/2016-4-003
EM_4_2016.indd 43 M_4_2016.indd 43 30.11.2016 16:31:33 0.11.2016 16:31:33

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