4 Ways Managers Can Foster Workplace Creativity
If you’re the manager of an office or company, there are a few things that may come to mind when you think about workplace productivity and successful results. You might think about employee dedication or efficiency, for example. One important thing that sometimes doesn’t get enough credit in producing good workplace results, though, is creativity. When employees are inspired to be creative, they’re bound to work more efficiently and feel happier, leading to meaningful products and overall company success. If you’re wondering how you can start fostering a creative spirit in your employees, there are a few things you should consider. Take a look.
1. Accept Uncertainty
The first step to creating an imaginative environment is to start with yourself – be sure you’re willing to accept some degree of uncertainty when you open up the workplace to uncharted new ideas. Putting forward unique proposals will require some risk-taking on the part of your employees, but keep in mind that it will benefit everyone in the end.
2. Offer Flexibility
Try conducting office training exercises that encourage your employees to take a single topic and generate multiple ideas. You can accomplish this through engaging games, for instance, to keep people on their toes. While these exercises might come across as just a fun break in the workday, the thinking skills they generate will transfer across meeting room boundaries and into their work products.
3. Encourage Details
Seeing the big picture is useful, but you’ll also want your employees to develop an eye for detail. Try running training sessions where employees are given a scenario and have to describe the experience in detail, for instance. When you focus in on the little things, you gain new perspectives, a skill that could encourage employees to look at tasks they’ve been assigned from new viewpoints as well.
4. Aim for Originality
Finally, the ultimate goal of fostering creativity in your workplace is to encourage original thinking. When your employees are primed to take risks and propose bold new ideas, you’ll be amazed at the unique material they can come up with. Try holding scheduled brainstorming sessions and let your employees take the lead.
Workplace creativity is more than just formatting spreadsheets in a new way or sending out imaginatively-worded emails. True creative thinking means risk-taking, leadership and, ultimately, new ideas that produce great results. As a manager, fostering a creative spirit in your employees could be one of the best time investments you can make. Keep these four methods in mind, and you’ll be on your way to a creative, boundary-pushing team before you know it.