WORKPLACE / OCT. 07, 2014
version 3, draft 3

How to Not Waste Creativity in the Workplace

Creativity is so important, as it brings new ideas to life. There are many reasons why creativity is not as apparent as it should be in the workplace. Some individuals are not openly creative, as they’re fearful of failure and punishment.

Within the workplace, management needs to value creativity. It needs to be acknowledged as something great, because creativity opens new and exciting doors. It allows employees to express themselves, feeling more motivated to achieve great things. This benefits everyone involved, especially the company.

It’s important to ensure creativity is encouraged and not wasted. In order to do so, you may need to make some changes around the office. Creativity should be valued just as much as success, because they’re not entirely independent of one another.

Make Sure Creativity is Rewarded

Thinking outside the box is something that needs to be encouraged. Motivate your employees by rewarding them. Start taking suggestions from your employees, how do they think creativity can be heightened and achieved?

As mentioned, many individuals are afraid to come up with creative ideas because they’re scared that they’ll be punished. Creativity is not always looked upon in the most favourable light. Many managers instead push productivity and are more results-driven.

The greatest achievements, are achieved through failures. Your employees will need to fail in order to reach that next great step. Make sure they know it’s okay to try something great and potentially not succeed. All great companies allow their employees to attempt creative tasks, growing and developing the company.

If employees know that they will be rewarded, they’re more likely to take creative risks. This does not mean that you need to pay them every time they are creative. Sometimes simply being acknowledged for your hard work and creative ideas is enough.

If an employee comes up with an outstanding, creative idea, make sure it’s known around the office. Buy them lunch or reward them with an extended lunch break on Friday.

Create a Positive Environment

Think about when you have come up with your most creative thoughts in the past. They were probably when you were in a relaxed or fun environment. Your office doesn’t need to be a circus, but make sure you create a fun, positive environment.

When your employees are more relaxed, they’re more likely to feel inspired and come up with creative ideas. If your work environment is stressful or depressing, then employees will focus on the task at hand and look forward to the end of the day.

This is the exact opposite of what you want. You want suggestions and ideas to be second nature. Allow this to happen, in an atmosphere that supports creativity. You can still achieve your goals, while incorporating creativity. In fact, creativity may lead you to your next big goal (the one that you’re not even aware of yet).

Involve all Employees

You need your company to work as a unit. If you rely on your ’experts’ to come up with all the ideas, then you are leaving out a good chunk of people. Improve team working strategies, increase training, and show clear leadership. When everyone is involved in the company’s mission, then more employees are likely to come forward with creative ideas.

Your employees are your biggest asset, so treat them that way. If you show respect, then you will get the same in return. They will be willing to work towards a bright future. When your employees work together, you will notice the positive outcome.

So, don’t shut down creativity. Allow it to flow throughout the office, inspiring your employees. Inspiration and creativity give way to ideas, which can then be put into action, leading to higher levels of success.


Image: istock

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