Creativity - the New Job Requirement

How to Expand Your Creative Capacity

Albert Einstein

“Creativity is intelligence having fun.”

Are you creative? Is creativity a part of your job description? Like it or not, COVID-19 has created a business environment that demands creativity in how we all approach our work. Business-as-usual is undeniably disrupted, the uncertainty is NOT going away but is changing every day. The current business environment calls for EVERYONE to be creative to remain relevant and indispensable team contributors.

Here are three reminders for building a “creative brand” in addition to a performance brand:

Everyone Is Creative. Creativity is distinctly a part of what it means to be human. It’s in our nature. It’s how we’re made. Utilizing the tools of technology, creative professionals are harnessing innovation to make it safe to fly again, to pivot, retool and produce to meet needs outside their comfort zones. New devices, products and services are emerging every day to safeguard communities and keep businesses alive. Orchestras and dance troupes are collectively sharing their art with virtual audiences. We all have a need for creative expression. That need will either find an outlet in growing your business or not—put your creative talents to use.

Everyone’s Capacity for Creativity Can Be Expanded. You’re not sure about this? Then ask yourself: How do art conservatories, film schools, dance academies, creative writing labs, and culinary institutes survive? Certainly, some people naturally gravitate to the arts more than others, but how much of the intellectual and creative capacity of your organization is really being tapped right now? Working virtually has forced us to think creatively about how we stay connected, stay productive and even thrive.

Everyone Is More Capable of Change Than You Think. Humans are incredibly adaptive. We change diets, careers/jobs, spending habits, and the way we treat our environment. Whether it’s learning to live with a lifetime partner, rising to the challenges of raising kids or moving on in the wake of losing a loved one, life is about adapting to change. Think of how your own personal and professional life has changed in the past several months. While it’s been difficult and disruptive, creativity is at the center of moving forward in a productive way.

What can you do?

What if you invite everyone on your team to bring their own creative perspective to the next virtual meeting and/or to the next challenge? Here’s a few guidelines to set the tone:

  • Set a few ground rules – No critiquing, no apologizing, this is about building a creative brand.
  • The sky’s the limit – No dumb ideas. What creative gift or passion can you offer up as a new lens or frame?
  • Be bold and share your talents and make a commitment to mining the collection of diversity among you. You can’t use or benefit from what you don’t know and don’t share.
  • Follow-up – Make sure creative ideas don’t fall by the wayside.
  • If people are stuck…ask “What are you OVER these days? And what are you now really into?”