Wasn’t it Don Draper in Mad Men that said something about allowing your creative teams to be wildly unproductive – until they finally are? While we don’t think the office environment at that 1960s era ad agency is something you should recreate, we do agree that taking the leash off of a creative team is something you want to do regularly. How can an employer tend to the needs of creative staffers in a way that fosters creativity and enthusiasm for the work at hand all day, every day? First, you must understand how they work.
Helping Creative Teams: The Creative Mind
Scientific American tells us that the creative brain functions differently, depending upon the task at hand. Imagination uses parts of the brain that are simply not utilized during analytical tasks such as accounting.
Being sensitive to these differences means understanding individual work styles. Get the most out of the creative minds on your team by asking them what feeds their imagination — and then help them find it. This is the first step toward creating a work environment that keeps your team productive.
Being creative, whether it involves writing or design, is an energy drain. Being paid to be creative is an unusual profession different from most others. There is an intense amount of thought that goes into the final written word, so it’s important for Copywriters to stay mentally sharp. Graphic Designers need experiences that fuel their creative spark. A Fast Company article pointed out… “new insights come from new people and new environments – any circumstance in which the brain has a hard time predicting what will happen next.” If you’re an employer, this means doing your best to mix up the daily routine to boost employee morale. This approach will energize staff outside the creative department, as well.
Ideas to Fuel the Spark
Asking a creative expert, “Where do you get your best ideas,” will help you determine how to change the office space to foster an increase in the quality and quantity of creativity in your business. Does your office need a makeover?
Flextime always provides mental refreshment. Harnessing a creative person to a desk for eight hours a day may be a mistake. Being creative requires time to think and consider new ideas, so a change of scenery in the form of working remotely or making sure the creative staffer has meeting-free time where they can think, will help keep things fresh. Volunteer time off (VTO) can do wonders as well. VTO acts much like flextime or paid time off, except it allows employs to donate their time to volunteer causes close to their heart.
Finally, consider bringing in a short-term creative staffer to spice things up. Interim creative talent to assist on a project will change the daily grind by forcing new ideas into a stale process and will spur your existing teams to up the ante on their own work. Artisan Talent specializes in providing creative talent to businesses just like yours. Contact us today to find out how an outside resource could improve the creative output in your business.