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Make space for creativity in your business

On paper, creativity and business seem diametrically opposed. One is an artistic outlet, while the other is a strategic, goal-oriented pursuit. But, there’s definitely overlap between the two, especially when it comes to unique problem-solving. No, I don’t necessarily mean coming up with a brilliant, Mad Men-esque ad campaign or an outrageous mascot for the new burger joint down the street. Sometimes, creativity is as simple and useful as finding the most resourceful solution to an everyday business challenge. And the best way to get in the creative mindset is to step inside a creative space.

Creativity isn’t just for creatives

Investing in creativity is important for all types of companies, not just marketing agencies that spend four years renovating an old factory from 1894 (wink wink). From fancy accounting firms to B2B manufacturers, everyone could do with a shot of creativity. But before you harness that creativity, you need a place for it to live and flourish. Enter the creative space, a delegated area in your office used for one purpose and one purpose only… to create! This is where you should ideate everything from launching a new product to thinking of ways to improve internal processes to nailing down those ever tricky audience personas. Any time you need to bounce ideas around, take the team into the creative space. Pronto!

Location, location, location

Setting up your creative space might seem as easy as finding a spare room with a few chairs, but there’s more to it than that. A creative space should be big enough for a group of at least four to sit and work comfortably. Unfortunately, this means the break room or your 8x6 cubicle won’t exactly do the trick. Doors are also a good idea… you know, so your less creative co-workers won’t have to listen to the excited whoops and colorful (aka, foul) language that often erupt during brainstorm sessions. What? Creativity is messy.

Consider your seating options

After you pick your spot, make sure there are a lot of comfortable seating options available. This doesn’t mean you have to drop $2,000 on a new love seat and massage recliner, though I doubt your team would complain, but there should be more than enough relaxed seating options for everyone. Arranging seats in a circle or a “U” shape is a great way to facilitate conversation and get the creativity flowing.

Choose your colors wisely

From our past blog on color psychology (you read that, right?), we know that colors have the power to evoke different emotions in people. While cool colors like blue, green and purple remind people of more calming topics like nature, trust and mystery, warm colors like red, yellow and orange have been known to bring out creativity, happiness and excitement in people. Which means they’re great choices if you’re looking to add some color to your creative space.  

Toys aren’t just for kids

Who says that you have to be a third-grader to enjoy a fidget spinner or some play-doh? Not us! Stress relief toys, like squishes and adult coloring books, have become all the rage in the last few years. There’s good reason, too. They’ve been shown to reduce stress and increase productivity in adults who use them regularly. No doubt, you should be thinking about adding some creativity to your space soon.

Rules?

Yes, rules! While establishing ground rules might seem contradictory to creativity, people need to feel comfortable sharing their ideas in order for your creative space to be successful. Nobody wants to talk when they feel they’re going to be shot down immediately. Making sure team members follow some base rules like welcoming all ideas equally, having only one conversation at a time and suspending judgement are how you get everyone involved and maximize the creativity.

Remember, above all else, your creative space should be a place where you and your co-workers feel free. Consider adding plants, aspirational sayings, music… anything at all that will help you get the ideas flowing. Oh, and snacks help. But what meeting isn’t improved with snacks?

Crafting a creative space not within your current means? Think about outsourcing your creativity to an award-winning creative agency! Drop us a line and we’ll get in contact shortly.

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