Exploring the Application of Design Thinking in the Leadership Development of Creative Industry Businesses

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Notwithstanding the growing contribution and recognition of the Creative Industries (CI), it has been reported that CI businesses are lacking modern leadership, commercial confidence, and acumen to realise their growth potential and take risks (Bazalgette, 2017; DCMS, 2016; PwC, 2015). It is argued that developing the leadership skills of small business ownermanagers can lead to increased business growth (Smith et al., 2017). Yet, there is a lack of leadership programs designed to meet current challenges facing business owners and
managers in the CI (NESTA, 2013). This is especially evident in terms of the unique circumstances of micro businesses (Armstrong and Page, 2015; Reinl and Kelliher, 2014), which make of the majority of CI firms. It has been argued that unique ‘creative’ leaders should be shaped with models relating to the creative context (Clore Leadership Programme, 2002). Therefore, by acknowledging Design Thinking (DT) as a ‘creative thought process’ (Ingle, 2013), this paper seeks to explore the use of DT in the CI and how it may be applied in a leadership development programme for micro business owners.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDriving Productivity in Uncertain and Challenging Times
Subtitle of host publicationLeadership and Leadership Development
Place of PublicationBristol
PublisherBritish Academy of Management
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic) 978-0-9956413-1-0
ISBN (Print) 978-0-9956413-1-0
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 6 Sept 2018
EventProceedings of British Academy of Management : Driving Productivity in Uncertain and Challenging Times: Leadership and Leadership Development Track - Bristol Business School University of the West of England, Bristol, United Kingdom
Duration: 4 Sept 20186 Oct 2018
Conference number: 32nd


ConferenceProceedings of British Academy of Management
Abbreviated titleBAM2018
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • Leadership Development
  • Micro Business
  • Design Thinking
  • Creative industries


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