15 Tips For Improving Your Creativity in the Workplace
Updated 26 October 2022
You can use high levels of creativity to your advantage in the workplace. You can put your creativity into action to find new solutions to problems, foster teamwork and come up with more efficient processes for your work. Understanding how you can improve and express your creative skills can help you make greater contributions to your workplace and feel more satisfied in your career. In this article, we explain why creativity is important and share tips to help you improve your creativity in the workplace.
Why is creativity in the workplace important?
Creativity in the workplace is important for nearly every field because it helps professionals expand their problem-solving skills and develop innovative work habits. Having creativity skills can also help foster teamwork and allow professionals to feel more engaged in their work. Some other key benefits of creativity in the workplace include:
Inspiration: When one employee is creative, they can also help inspire other professionals to do the same, leading to a highly skilled team.
Work satisfaction: Professionals often feel happier at work when they can exercise creativity with their work.
Employee retention: When a company values creativity at work, it's often evident in its work culture. This can help new hires feel more confident and happy in their roles.
Problem-solving: As previously mentioned, creative professionals can often think of new ways to approach a situation. This can help them solve workplace issues.
Productivity: Creativity skills can help professionals feel more invested in their work, which may help them reach their productivity goals faster.
15 tips for improving your creativity in the workplace
If you want to use your creative skills to influence and improve your work and company culture, consider these tips to help you express your creativity:
1. Have a diverse team
Surround yourself with a diverse group of professionals. This can help you learn new things and develop new talents. Professionals from diverse backgrounds can often offer fresh perspectives and introduce new ways to approach certain work tasks. Having a diverse team can also help you consider other working and learning styles, which may allow you to adopt habits that better suit your needs.
2. Consider new ideas
It's important to be open-minded in the workplace and consider new ideas. This can allow you to learn new things and help others express their creativity. For example, if you're working on a team and your colleague suggests a new approach for your work tasks, consider using their idea. Even if the idea doesn't work as planned, trial-and-error periods like this can often provide valuable insight.
Related: What does a creative marketer do?
3. Be willing to take risks
Many creative thinkers learn to embrace challenges at work and aren't intimidated by the prospect of failure. By taking risks and trying new ways of doing things, you can innovate new practices and see if your ideas work. This process also allows you to refine your ideas so you can use them in your daily work. In the case that your idea fails, you can learn from the experience and try something new again.
4. Apply your skills to problem resolution
When you think creatively, you may find it easier to apply your imagination to everyday scenarios. This can help you come up with unique solutions to the challenges you may face at work. Apply your skills to regular workplace issues to create unique ideas for resolution. This practice might even help you solve conflicts between your colleagues, which can help improve your workplace culture and environment.
5. Challenge conformity
Challenge conformity and usual workplace norms to create new innovative practices. Having a strong understanding of the usual processes and norms at your workplace can help you recognise when established practices could benefit from improvement. Use your work and skills to inspire new habits and methods for workplace improvement. This can include finding a way to make a work process more efficient or even refining a practice to ensure your work is more accurate and of a higher quality.
6. Try to focus
Often, creative people can create their best work when they allow themselves to focus on one task at a time. Try to direct your attention to one task at a time, especially in problem-solving situations. This may help you produce high-quality work at a faster rate. It also allows you to feel more invested in your work, which may help improve your workplace satisfaction.
7. Establish your independence
While creative people may find inspiration from working on a team, they often thrive with minimal supervision. Establish your independence by advancing your skills to a point where you produce consistent, high-quality work. This can encourage your supervisors to grant you more room to exercise your creative vision and work independently. This can help you feel more confident in your work and allow you to use your creativity skills at every level of your project since you're completing it by yourself.
8. Take breaks
Take regular breaks while working, including both a lunch break and shorter breaks throughout the day. This can help you feel more energised at work. Taking breaks can help prevent feelings of burnout, which can impact your creativity. Consider using your break to take a short walk or go outside, as professionals often feel inspired by nature. After taking a break, you can often return to work feeling more inspired and ready to reach your productivity goals.
9. Develop a strong work ethic
As you develop your creativity, you may become more aware of the effort that goes into being creative. This may help you take your work seriously and remain realistic about the amount of time and thought it might take to complete a project. This is a characteristic that you may find greatly improves over time as you become more comfortable with your approach to work.
10. Accept criticism
Constructive criticism is an important part of the creative process. It allows you to reflect on and improve your methods. Accept criticism respectfully and take time to think about it. This can help you consider other perspectives and analyse your own work. Often, being able to accept criticism can help you improve your work and advance your skills.
11. Set boundaries
Setting boundaries can encourage you to think about a problem in a new way and find innovative solutions. Try to set boundaries with yourself and your colleagues to test how they impact your creativity. For example, a boundary you can set for yourself may be that you have to keep your workstation clean and clear at all times. This might help you improve your organisational skills and help you feel more creative.
A boundary you might set with your colleagues is that you are only available for contact at certain times. This can ensure that you have the time to focus on your own work.
12. Collaborate often
Collaborating with other professionals can help you develop new skills and gain unique perspectives. Collaboration can also help you inspire others, which may lead to a more creative work environment as a whole. Consider finding a partner with whom you can share ideas and discuss workplace problems. Even if you're not officially collaborating with each other by working on the same project, trading insight and ideas can help you bond with your colleague and try innovative practices.
13. Create an inspiring work environment
Often, the spaces professionals work in can affect their mood, productivity and creativity levels. Try to create a calm and inspiring work environment by ensuring that you have a comfortable workstation. This can include organising your workstation to ensure efficiency and order. Consider adding personal touches such as photos or other decorative items to your workspace to inspire your creativity. When modifying your workspace, be sure to reference your employee handbook or ask for your supervisor's permission, as your employer may have specific rules about workstation organisation.
14. Take time to self-reflect
Self-reflection can help you recognise which skills and practices you can improve, which may inspire you to use your creativity. Taking time to self-reflect can also help you relax and recharge so that you can think of better ideas or consider the insight of others. Some professionals meditate during their breaks at work as an opportunity to self-reflect.
15. Participate in brainstorming sessions
Brainstorming sessions are a great way to share ideas and find creative solutions to problems. When brainstorming, be sure to take notes and respect the ideas of others. This can include waiting for your colleague to fully explain their idea before you comment on it and contributing to the conversation yourself. Team brainstorming sessions can help you share and receive insight on your work habits, bond with your colleagues and exercise your creative skills.
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