As a supervisor or business owner, would you agree that there is not enough creativity in the workplace? Perhaps this is because, day in and day out, managers are ever under the burden of seeing that their employees get done what needs to be done. There is usually not much energy left to devote to the development and encouragement of creativity in the workplace. This has got to change.
Why Workplace Creativity Needs to Be Uncapped
Why is creativity important in the workplace? There are many answers to this question. For example, workplace creativity is important because…
- It leads to exciting discoveries and innovations. This often results in finding cheaper ways to perform critical tasks.
- It creates positive company culture that draws quality employees.
- It facilitates teamwork and peer bonding, which is critical to a high level of productivity.
It’s interesting to consider how often we as individuals are encouraged to be creative. It doesn’t happen very often, does it? Our culture sends subtle messages to us that creativity is reserved for “weird,” highly artistic individuals without steady paychecks. Nothing could be further from the truth. Everyone is creative—from professional cellists to phlebotomists to project managers. Some people just know how to tap into their reservoir of creativity better than others. Thankfully, any professional can learn the art of being creative.
3 Ways to Encourage Creativity in the Workplace
As a manager, you can uncork creativity in your employees and teach them to access it on a regular basis. Here are a few ideas to help you get started:
1 – Ask employees for their ideas – Many employees have trouble believing that their employers want to hear about their ideas on various subjects. To encourage workers to think creatively, offer an incentive if they submit at least 5 original ideas to you each month. They can submit their ideas through email, in person, or via a suggestions box.
2 – Give employees “daydreaming” breaks – Are you serious about uncapping creativity in your workplace? If so, you should do something bold: give your employees a 5-to-10-minute “daydreaming” break each day. Instruct them to daydream about ways your company or products can be improved, etc. Psychology Today’s contributor Amy Fries writes, “Instead of fearing that you’re losing an employee’s clocked-in time to creative thinking, look at it from another angle–you are gaining much wider access to a person’s creative energies by encouraging them to explore ideas whenever the inspiration strikes.” This will communicate to your workforce that you value creativity and open-mindedness.
3 – Build a multi-cultural/generational workforce – There is much wisdom in hiring employees of widely varying backgrounds, cultures and ages. The more unique each of your employees is, the greater the level of creativity will be in your workplace.
Creativity has been under-valued in the workplace. That is, until now. It is becoming increasingly trendy for workplaces to have a creative bent. Any organization that wants to stay competitive and attract top-talent workers must cultivate a culture of creativity.
What are you doing to uncap creativity in your workplace?
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