Change never stops in Milwaukee.
Change never stops in Milwaukee.

Milwaukee needs to get comfortable with constant discomfort

Massive change and building continues to happen in and around Milwaukee.  With both come jobs, opportunity, density, discovery and discomfort. 

Milwaukee's changing.  You could argue it's changed for the better and a bit of the worse over the past 20 years.  Both the good and some of the bad may be at odds, but that's OK if our challenges are being addressed and tackled with vigor and creativity. 

It’s easy to say we want change, but for cities Milwaukee's size it’s often easier to just do what we've always done.

We can't do this. Milwaukee must continue to change, lead, get stuff done and be comfortable with discomfort.

I recently finished one of the best business books I’ve ever read, "Creativity, Inc." Written by Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace, it’s a fascinating look at creativity, change, success, and well, life. 

In the book, Catmull never seeks "to define the word creativity – and that’s intentional." Rather, he believes "that we all have the potential to solve problems and express ourselves creatively. What stands in our way are these hidden barriers – the misconceptions and assumptions that impede us without our knowing it."

At one point, though, he uses a phrase to clarify what creativity – and change – could mean – "unexpected connections between unrelated concepts or ideas."

I think about this, a lot.  Especially when it comes to making Milwaukee, Downtown Milwaukee and greater Milwaukee even better. 

We need to "fight" to bust out of perceptions that may hold us back and connect unrelated concepts and ideas.  Many groups and leaders do this very well.  We saw several examples this week at the MANDI Awards.

Life isn’t easy and making our city, neighborhoods and communities better is hard work.  Becoming comfortable with discomfort is hard too.  Battling, collaborating and connecting like we’ve never done before are necessary and required. 

In the past several years, Milwaukee’s moved beyond its inferiority compl…

Read more...