💎 Give me the freedom of a tight brief

Joyce uses the analogy of a playground. 12 Researchers found that when you put up a fence around a playground, children will use the entire space—they’ll feel safe to play all the way to the edges. But if those walls are removed, creating a wide-open playground, the space the children choose to play in contracts: they stay toward the middle and they stick to each other, because that’s what feels safe. This, Joyce suggests, is what happens in the creative process. When there are no clear limits in the brief itself, we aren’t sure what boundaries to explore and push against. We end up without the necessary focus and passion of which Marissa Mayer speaks. In fact, one of Joyce’s surprise findings was that in the absence of explicit constraints, the unconstrained teams created more conflict, stemming from all the different unarticulated assumptions and implicit constraints that team members created in their own heads, as if to fill the void.

Excerpt from: A Beautiful Constraint: How To Transform Your Limitations Into Advantages, and Why It′s Everyone′s Business by Mark Barden and Adam Morgan