​How can you keep your creative employees motivated?

In 2017, the Creative Economy in the UK boasted 3.12 million jobs, with a growth of 80,000 jobs across the Creative Industries. Creative workers are finding their way into the corporate world with bigger pushes on innovative marketing and sales campaigns; from Nike’s immersive video game which transports runners into a virtual world, to Marmite’s Gene Project, a play on its love it or hate it reputation. However, many companies are still keen on playing it safe and following the Status Quo of the latest fad.

Our creative employees are often those which plant seeds of innovation into the company, but how can we keep our creative employees motivated?

1. Assign them to the right roles.

Just because you have a creative employee who is a strong writer and can create an interesting and innovative blog post from nothing, it doesn’t mean that they’ll be able to handle your in-house design. In the same way that a biologist isn’t the same as a physicist, creative workers have different skills. Think about it like an elastic band; matching them to the right role will stretch their abilities without snapping the band – you need to give them stimulating but reachable goals.

2. Understand that ‘Creative Freedom’ isn’t just a Buzzphrase.

If you have given them an amount of Creative Freedom, then allow them this. Don’t give them the opportunity to shine and then confine their ideas to fit with your vision of what a project, campaign, advert, brochure, etc should look like. By giving them a chance to think outside of the box a brilliant idea may come from them, one which may even better or improve the reputation or success of your company.

3. Allow them the resources.

Yes, their idea may be a gamble, something which you have never tried before, but what if someone had restricted the mobile mogul, Steve Jobs, or the vintage advocate, Sophia Amoruso. It is important to set aside resources for creative work. This isn’t limited to just finances, but also the time to allow them to work on it – good things take time after all. 

4. Be supportive.

As well as giving your creative employees the resources and time to work on a project, also give them your time. Be open to what they have to say and consider their ideas, maybe give them a trial if you’re unsure. When something does do well, reward their innovation and show that you value their input to the company by giving them other creative tasks.

5. Promote cognitive diversity.

Encourage your employees to mix their skills. For example, if you’ve got a very efficient and proactive IT employee who specialises in coding then why not offer their help to a creative employee who has had the idea to make an interactive landing page on your website? In doing so, both employees will feel valued and appreciate the value of the other – creating a positive office Climate.

The need to manage and retain creative talent can be critical to the success of your business in today’s world. We have ever shortening attention spans and need campaigns and ideas which draw customers in and hold their attention. So, next time an employee comes to you with a creative idea, think twice about how you’ll handle it – don’t miss out on your next big opportunity by following the crowd.

Zac's Challenges:

Zac’s tech business is growing rapidly. He’s gone from being a developer with a good idea to now overseeing an ever-expanding team. Zac knows that in order for the business to grow successfully, it needs to stay true to its founding values and his staff need to feel valued and engaged. Zac wants to understand if he and his team are on the same page and he needs to do it quickly and cost effectively.

Zac's PCS Solution

Zac decides to use PCS Lite to get a quick temperature check of how his team are performing and what they think about the business. The PCS Lite report quickly surfaces the fact that his team have lost sight of the organisation’s purpose and goals. Zac realises that he needs to improve his on-boarding processes and help orientate the new team members better in the company culture and vision. 6 months later, Zac uses PCS Lite to check his new onboarding process is working; concludes that the growing team are much better aligned to his vision and are generally operating in a more positive working environment.

Annabel's Challenges:

It’s Annabel’s job to help the Partners in the firm manage their clients and ensure they’re consistently adding value. Recently, Annabel has been asked by one of the Partners to find a tool or framework that the consultants can use to benchmark new clients looking for team and leadership improvement programmes. It needs to be cost-effective, established and reputable and able to be branded with the firm’s own logo.

Annabel's PCS Solution

Annabel recommends PCS Pro to the Senior Partners as it provides an objective measurement of team and leadership climate against which the consultants can build performance improvement programmes. PCS has a good track record, academic validation, excellent training and customer service, so she’s confident that it’s the right tool for the firm’s consultants to use.

Sarah's Challenges:

Sarah has to keep across the multiple training and development needs in the organisation and do it within a tight budget. Recently, Sarah’s been asked to design a L&D programme that improves the staff retention rate and helps staff feel more engaged with the changes happening in the organisation, not least the shift to more flexible working.

Sarah's PCS Solution

Sarah uses PCS to measure how different teams across the organisation are performing and look at any patterns which suggest the need for organisation-wide, leader or team training. Sarah notices that all teams and leaders have a low climate score in the Processes segment. Sarah knows that allocating budget in this area will improve performance. She works with the Senior Management Team to review the organisation’s processes as they transition to more flexible working and designs a training programme to support staff in the transition. She’s helped staff to feel supported, acknowledged and engaged which ultimately drives performance. 

Jim's Challenges:

Jim’s client has a team that’s not performing as well other teams in the organisation. The team has a high staff turnover, sickness and the lack of cohesion is impacting the team’s wellbeing and performance. Jim needs to get to the bottom of why this is happening and design effective coaching interventions which can generate tangible results for his client.

Jim's PCS Solution

Jim uses PCS Pro to measure / benchmark how the team and leader are performing across the 6 segments critical to team performance – Goals, Roles, Processes, Adaptability, Connection and Resilience. He can immediately see the disparity in Goals, Processes and Connection between the leader’s perception and those of her team. He uses this information to build a coaching programme designed align team and leader. After 6 months, the team seems to be more settled and productive. Jim remeasures using PCS Pro – the results show the client the effectiveness of his coaching intervention.