Creativity 50

What Eric Hirshberg Taught 72andSunny About Creativity

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72andSunny team
72andSunny team
Eric Hirshberg
Eric Hirshberg
Under Eric's leadership, Activision's culture, organizational structure, business model(s), priorities and products are all advanced by the application of his creative process: lateral thought, intense rigor, a quest for the most elegant solution and nailing the details.

In Activision's business, what may seem like small creative decisions can all have live-or-die sales consequences. So it takes relentless focus on every detail of the product and how it's delivered to bring winners to market. It's not uncommon to see Eric sketching ideas for everything from character designs to new products between board meetings and earnings calls. You don't learn that in business school. When [Activision Blizzard CEO] Bobby Kotick hired Eric as Activision's CEO, Ad Age referred to the move as "The Eric Hirshberg Experiment," which, in typical Hirshberg fashion, he chuckled at. He also embraced the implied challenge. The truth is , there aren't many Black Collar CEOs in the world or big, tangible examples of how portable or scalable creative skill sets are between industries.

Having led the largest entertainment launch in history two years in a row via the "Call of Duty" franchise, and captaining one of the most successful and most innovative product launches with Skylanders, the experiment seems to be paying off.

As some of creativity's true believers, it's been electric to see how powerful creativity really is when it's in charge. It's making Eric popular with investors and zombie-lovers alike. Which may be his best and most creative result yet.

— John Boiler, Glenn Cole, Matt Jarvis and Robert Nakata of 72andSunny

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