Learning by doing — Writing about co-creative leadership taught Andreah to become more co-creative herself.

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I believe that this project was so fun because Steffan approached it as a Co-Creative Leader. I now use the 5 key skills of Co-creative Leadership in my own life in many ways, which is amazing to me.

Industry: Communications
Job title: Copywriter

Here is what Andreah had to share after her experience co-writing the book The Way of the Co-creative Leader with Steffan.

What did you learn about co-creative leadership?

When Steffan first approached me to work on The Way of the Co-creative Leader I had no idea just how much I would learn about the content of the book while working on it. After reading some of his blogs and speaking with him prior to starting, it was clear that Co-creative Leadership was a practice that was developed with passion.

It was also very clear that it was not merely a concept for others to learn but one that he used in his work every day. As we continued to work together I learned that it was also something he embodied in all areas of his life. Co-creative Leadership is not something Steffan leaves at the office door at the end of the work day.

How would you summarize your co-creation experience?

I have years of experience and many books under my belt and this by far was one of my favourite experiences. While I wanted to say something more profound, the one word that keeps coming up is: FUN!

I believe that this project was so fun because Steffan approached it in the same way he approaches everything in life: as a Co-Creative Leader. I had such a great time working on this project.

How did co-creating impact you in this project?

Let me answer this question a bit differently. Here are some of the reasons that I had such a great time working on this project:

  • There was an ease to the flow of writing and feedback.
  • Feedback was constructive and helpful.
  • Steffan was always open to discussing ideas.
  • When we disagreed I never felt belittled or shut down.
  • A decision was always arrived at through open and honest conversation.
  • I always felt valued for my contribution to the work.

All of this to say, I came to realize that we were putting a lot of the five skills of co-creative leadership in practice. Because we discussed ideas so openly and I felt that I had a voice, it felt we were both a voice in the conversation. I felt like I could bring my ideas and try new things in the book, and it unleashed even more creative risk-taking.

Because I was trying new ways of collaborating to write a book and living outside of my comfort zone, it felt as if I was building capacity. It was tough at first but got easier as we went along. Finally, I was building capacity by actually trying things and I was really in a learning by doing mode.

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"With many of my clients I use a process I have developed over the years and in some ways Steffan asked me to step out of my comfort zone and go with the flow. I felt supported in doing this."

How did you put co-creative leadership into practice?

One of the things I love about what I do is that I often learn something new from each of my clients as I write, but never have I learned about the thing I’m writing about in the actual process of writing it. Writing inception? Does that make sense? I think so!

In the end, I was truly learning by doing, by being within the process as I wrote about it and this was a very unique experience. I am so grateful to have been a part of the experience of co-creating The Way of the Co-creative Leader.

If you would like support in writing your next book, please consider working with Andreah. You can find more information about her and her writing services by visiting her website at https://www.sadietellsstories.ca/.