Lots of people nowadays describe themselves as “creative.” What is “creativity” exactly and what does this mean for your business?
At LaunchPad, creativity is a key indicator of success for the team. We aim to hire people who can find creative solutions to business problems, and think differently about the way they operate. It’s our explicit aspiration to let that creativity flow through everything we do, then confirm that our customers feel we’ve achieved that. It’s a great way of anchoring to our brand personality and hopefully show how and why we’re unique.
According to a recent Talent Culture article by Tim Wright, “creativity” is defined not always in terms of the arts, but rather, as the capacity to take a different look at the standard ways of operating in business.
Employers would therefore do well to capitalise on this important trait, if only because new perspectives are crucial to remaining competitive in today’s business environment. Let’s take a look at a few ways you can foster creativity in your workplace.
What Creativity Has to Offer
Creativity is the formation of innovative ideas that ultimately lead to higher efficiency and a happier workplace. Wright suggests that “innovation includes analysing, designing, developing, implementing, and evaluating the practical output of creativity. Innovation proves creativity is valuable.” By embracing creativity as an important quality in your workforce, you’ll also be embracing its benefits.
By recognising, encouraging, or even rewarding creativity, you’ll also effectively motivate your team to do better. Wright suggests, though, that by encouraging only “good ideas,” the free flow is cut short. Therefore, if creativity and trial-and-error aren’t encouraged, no innovative thoughts can, or will, emerge. All thoughts – even ones that are works in progress – are important thoughts.
Moreover, by nurturing a creative environment, more ideas are sure to follow. It stands to reason that inspiration for further great ideas will stem from others’ great ideas.
How to Create an Environment Where Creativity can Thrive
Crafting a free-thinking and creative workplace isn’t as simple as stepping into the office and yelling, “Okay, you’re all allowed to think now.” An office culture needs to be molded using rewards, recognition, and opportunities for growth. A community can never truly thrive when creativity is stifled.
In terms of its personality, the direction that the company takes is up to the discretion of its management. Many of today’s leading companies, such as Google, understand that by fostering a creative environment they’re able to maximise the value of their employees.
The recognition of creativity is key to its success, from allowing the time and providing the platform for those ideas to manifest, to the celebration of individual ideas, to efforts to maintain and enhance the free flow of conversation.
With this, it’s also crucial to not dismiss ideas that seem “bad” or “irrelevant,” since it’s from these ideas that other sparks emerge to create further innovation. Any harshly negative remarks made about someone’s idea will only create a fear of contributing and lead to silence at your brainstorm meetings.
In the ideal working environment, collaboration and conversation amongst individuals would be promoted at every level of the company. Therefore, rather than reporting everything to one person, try to allow for communal dialogue to encourage further creativity.
It’s always important to remember that besides encouraging the free flow of ideas, it is just as crucial to act on them. For this to work, an open mind is needed. Encouraging your team to brainstorm ideas without punishment or restriction will allow them to bring the pieces of innovation together to solve any professional puzzle.
Creativity is what drives innovation, teamwork, efficiency, and a unique personality for your company. Therefore, even the weakest ideas should not be dismissed, but built upon.