29. January 2016 · Comments Off on 10 Tips for Managing Creative People · Categories: creativity · Tags: ,

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1. Develop ideas
Start with a collaborative environment. Work with creative people to develop concepts but avoid specific, detailed instructions on what a project should look like. Explain parameters clearly—such as the feel or look a project should have—and let the designer go to work. Check in often to see how the project is going and help in its development.

The creative personality is not one to just follow a set of rules, and that trait makes them successful in creative and design-oriented fields. Give them room to develop concepts without constant observation.

Coach workers rather than dictate a set of rules to them. Avoid planning out everything that should be done in advance and give employees freedom to make choices so they feel some creative control over projects.

2. Brainstorm, brainstorm, brainstorm
Much of the creative process is organic and creative people like to think and imagine. Because a characteristic of a right-brain thinkers is to process information in sometimes random and varied orders, brainstorming sessions can be beneficial. Toss out many ideas (follow the “no idea is stupid rule”) and keep quick notes of concepts

19. November 2015 · Comments Off on 11 useful Tricks to Improve Creative Thinking · Categories: creativity · Tags:

download (3)1 – You need inspirational rituals

One of the best ways to inspire yourself and create every day is to develop rituals that you begin to use regularly and routinely. This will condition your brain for better creativity. For instance, your ritual might be reading in the morning, listening music, meditating for a few minutes or taking several deep breaths.

2 – Try to create something every day
Create something every day, even if it’s only for 5 or 10 minutes. I try to write articles, I draw mind maps in meetings, develop business models, logos and I also collect and develop hundreds of ideas. I always have 3 projects in the pipeline, lots of them are not developed but they inspire me.

3 – Instead of discipline, think devotion
Luciano Pavarotti, one’s said: “People think I’m disciplined. It’s not discipline, its devotion, and there’s a great difference.”

4 – Take breaks
When you feel stuck with an idea and you have nowhere to go. You need a breather. Forcing yourself to find a solution will only lead to exhaustion. Try standing up from your desk, walk outside or to the vending machine, grab a coffee,

10. October 2015 · Comments Off on 10 Tips for Unleashing Your Creativity at Work · Categories: creativity

download (5)1. Get visual. Regardless of your role, industry or responsibilities, visualizing data and ideas is an incredibly powerful tool to get your team thinking. Get off the phone, go in a room together (a virtual room will work, too) and use a whiteboard until your hand hurts.

2. Throw out the rule book. The next time you get your team together to brainstorm, create and enforce a “no holds barred” idea session. Nothing is off the table; nothing is outside the realm of possibility. Avoid words and phrases like “but,” “how would we” and “we can’t.” If necessary, designate someone to police those phrases and keep everyone honest.

3. Work backward. Figure the goal or ideal scenario 10 to 15 years down the road. Start there and work your way backward. Don’t worry about the “how.” Focus on the “what.” Your road map will literally unfold itself.

4. Make a game of it. At the start of your next meeting try a game to get the creative juices flowing. Have everyone write a random idea down, crumple it up and toss it onto the center of the table. Pick one idea at random and build

23. March 2016 · Comments Off on 5 Killer Creativity Tips to Make Yourself Happy · Categories: creativity · Tags:

Being creative is closely connected with being happy. Think about the times when you’ve been most creative. The times when hours have passed in the blink of an eye, when you’ve been completely lost in your creativity, highly focused and flowing freely. Happy times, yes?

So how can you reach this kind of creativity more often? Here are 5 killer tips to help you be more creative, and therefore make yourself happy:

1. Create what you want to create right now. When you choose a new project to start on, do you go through a list of possibilities that you started years ago, and feel obliged to work through them all one by one? Creativity thrives on energy and flow and your current waves of inspiration. If you can’t get motivated about a project you thought of years ago, but a new idea you had yesterday fills you with excitement, then GO with the natural flow, follow that new idea, and create what makes you happy.

2. Acknowledge your creative achievements. It’s so easy to overlook all you create because you’re with yourself all the time and lose objectivity. Keep a notebook or chart of all your creative achievements. They don’t have to

28. February 2016 · Comments Off on Tips for Tapping into Your Creativity · Categories: creativity · Tags: ,

Waste materials. I have a really hard time with this. I know I need to waste materials in order to practice any sort of craft, especially when it comes to things like experimenting with my Silhouette Cameo and learning to sew. I want everything I do to have a resulting use and purpose. If I’m going to take the time to do it, I want to have something decent to show as a tangible result. But? This really isn’t practical. There need to be “oops” projects and a stash of practice materials.

Don’t push creativity into your free time. Make it a priority and schedule time for it. Oof, this one hits hard! I’ve been trying to schedule craft and blogging time in the evenings after I get home from work. But add in dog-walking, working out, cooking dinner, etc, and before I know it, it’s 10 p.m. and I’m scrambling to finish tomorrow’s post (ahem—that’s exactly what I’m doing now—ahem).

Don’t rush. This one is a direct result of the point above. And I am Oh. So. Guilty. I am constantly thinking of what comes next; check this task off the list so I can keep going, going, going. I am

15. February 2016 · Comments Off on 6 Tips to Help Ignite Your Creativity and Increase Your Success · Categories: creativity · Tags:

The list of 6 pointers below which I’ve compiled from various successful people will help ignite your creativity and re-charge your motivation:

Try something new for 30 days
This is a great suggestion which I recently heard in a presentation from Matt Cutts who is a search optimization engineer at google. Trying something new for a month is a fantastic way to re-build your creativity and whet your curiosity. This can also help you discover the thing that you love doing in case you weren’t sure what it was to begin with.
In terms of the Internet there are countless of free and premium courses and products available in which you can learn or discover a new skill which you can use to enhance your creativity.
Do what you love
People who make a living from doing what they love instantly have a head-start on those who hate or are indifferent to their jobs. Apart from the fact that you feel good doing what you love, you also have no negative baggage which comes from the stress and resentment of doing something you don’t like.
If you don’t know what you love doing, then maybe applying point 1 above might help

08. February 2016 · Comments Off on 12 Unusual Ways To Spur Creativity During Meetings · Categories: creativity · Tags: , , ,

Ask Your Team To Think Fast!

Encourage thinking on your feet, so every meeting typically includes a spur of the moment prompt, where each person quickly throws out an idea that comes to mind. Crazy is OK.

We then document these and decide which to go deeper on as a group. Don’t focus on what isn’t possible or what’s hard; rather, focus on how we can solve it. Execution is a function of a decision to commit to a project, then the discipline to follow through.

We record our actions and the teammate briefs the team weekly until complete. This keeps us all accountable to one another.

Show Gratitude
In order to get the most out of my team for a brainstorming session, we ask everyone to reach out via phone to someone they are grateful towards prior to the session. When we start the meeting, everyone comes in with a positive and open mind. The results are spectacular.

Ask For The Worst Idea In The Room
When creativity is at a standstill or a project is particularly difficult, I like to challenge our team members to come up with the WORST idea possible. Sometimes we even make it a competition, trying to one-up each

01. February 2016 · Comments Off on 7 Creative Tips for Learning a Language · Categories: creativity

Liven things up Nothing’s better to keep up your motivation than some real-life activities that use the language you are learning and show off its culture at the same time. Cooking classes are a good option for the food enthusiast as frying up gastronomic delicacies means you’ll learn your fruit and vegetable words and take home some target language recipes to boot (the best kind of homework).

Get starry eyed Whether you’re into astrology or not, once you do your research you’ll find that most cultures have their own take on predicting the future and finding magic in the signs and symbols of the world. Sign up for a daily horoscope for the chance to learn a special set of terms that can come in handy next time you offer up your palm for a reading. If you don’t like looking at the sky try checking out the local stars and celebrity gossip scene instead to figure out who makes your target language’s culture turn ‘round.

Follow the leaders So much of what we learn when we study a new language revolves around the country or countries where it is spoken. References to politics and government are hard to get around when

20. January 2016 · Comments Off on 5 Reasons to Work With Creative Staffing Agencies · Categories: creativity · Tags:

Need to Hire? Creative Staffing Agencies Can Help

Here are five reasons why a creative staffing agency can make job-filling easier:

Industry and local market expertise. Creative recruiters understand the industry inside and out, not to mention the local markets they serve. In fact, many of TCG’s creative recruiters used to work in the industry as designers, writers, marketers and more. This background gives our creative recruiters unparalleled insight into candidates’ abilities as well as how those skill sets can meet your specific business needs.
Access to a breadth of top candidates. Creative recruiters focus on building extensive pools of creative talent. You may write the best job description, but are you certain it’s reaching the best candidates? With a creative staffing agency, you have access to a wide range of potential hires that may otherwise never have seen your job opening. In addition, creative recruiters reach professionals who aren’t actively looking for a job, but may be interested if the right opportunity is presented to them.
Cost. Employee turnover costs can be high. Did you know that the cost of a bad hire can equal 30 percent of that person’s initial-year salary? Knowing how much a bad hire can set you

10. January 2016 · Comments Off on 5 Tips To Boost Your Creativity As A Photographer · Categories: creativity

While there is no universal recipe for taking a good shot, every photographer has a set of tricks, which invariably come in handy. Well, here are mine.

1. First of all, tell a story.
Find the motivation for each object in the scene; some integrating vector. What are these objects? How did they come here? Who brought them here? Who is the protagonist? What’s going on here?

A good photo is like the climax scene in the movie. Looking at this kind of photo, the viewer will be able to see what happened before, and can guess what will happen after. For your photo, invent a coherent story (with a beginning, middle, and end), and then simply capture a culminating point.

2. Create and use mind maps.
It’s the perfect exercise to make your mind work and get it running. I believe you can easily find detailed articles about how to use the mind maps, but here is a summary: write the main theme (the object you are working with, the mood you want to convey, and so on) in the center, draw rays of main branches (shooting conditions, associations, available props, supporting ideas, location). Refine each of these parameters using the supporting

01. January 2016 · Comments Off on Your Guide to Building the Best Creative Team · Categories: creativity · Tags: , ,

Your Prescription for Building the Best Creative Team

As you chart new goals and plans, add “building the best creative team” to your list. Follow my prescription below, which includes five must-haves when building effective teams:

Right People: In order to build the best creative team, you need the best people and the right number of them. Three ways to assess if you have the right people is by evaluating technical skills, cultural fit, productivity and team size.
Skills. With any team, you need to begin with the right intellectual assets. This is the science part of team-building. Your job is to ensure the individuals on your team have the right technical skills and expertise (like software knowledge) as well as the right level of experience.

Cultural fit. Can you define what makes a good match for your team and organization? This is the art of team-building. After all, there’s a job description and there’s the right fit. The right fit needs more than the rote skills to execute the tasks associated with the job; he or she must also have the personality and work style to fit in with the culture of the team and company.

Team size. Integral to team-building success is

28. December 2015 · Comments Off on 7 Tips for Conquering a Creative Block · Categories: creativity · Tags: , , ,

1. Choose a Tool That Inspires You

You know that feeling of staring at a blank Microsoft Word document, just watching the cursor slowly blink? If that image fills you with dread, it’s time to find a new tool. The right set of working tools can make the creative process that much easier—when you really like your toolkit, you look forward to creating even more.

Some suggestions to test: For digital work, Ulysses is a simple writing tool that allows you to set small, incremental goals (based on things like word count and time spent in-app) to get you going. FiftyThree’s Paper app is also an excellent tool for sketching and illustrating. The analog counterpart to these is a lovely Moleskine notebook and pens that make your work feel lavish and fun.

2. Start Early

Little-known fact: You have more willpower early in the day (before decision fatigue has a chance to set in). That means it’s easier to focus on the important things before life’s distractions take over.

3. Pick a Goal or Focus for the Session

Pick a single, achievable outcome to focus on. This could be an intro paragraph or a whole chapter; a rough sketch or a detailed illustration; a single screen

21. December 2015 · Comments Off on 4 Expert Tricks for Maximizing Your Creativity · Categories: creativity

CREATIVITY: NATURE VERSUS NURTURE

If you’re envious of friends who can paint or turn flower arranging into a profound art, and are convinced you weren’t born with any creative abilities, Bain has news for you. “Everyone is born with innate creative abilities,” he tells us. The problem is, people around us as kids or young adults sometimes squash our creative spirits. “Re-awakening our imaginations is a rebellious act,” Bain says. “Fortunately it’s in our power.” It’s never too late to rediscover the creative side of yourself.

MAKING TIME TO BE CREATIVE
But how exactly do you discover your creative side? Luckily, Bain says it helps to get in touch with your emotional side. “Emotions are to the creative person what chisels are to sculptors,” he explains. “Learning to deeply feel emotions creates unfamiliar neural maps that open us to new experience.” Okay, so you carved out time in your schedule to get all emotional and inspired. Now what? “First, relax,” Bain says. “Turn your attention away from everything you’ve been thinking about and doing up to this point. Choose something completely arbitrary, plucking something from your immediate surroundings. This is a fun way to get get your juices flowing. Go to the

12. December 2015 · Comments Off on Inspiring Creativity in Your Employees · Categories: creativity · Tags: , ,

How do you inspire creativity in your team when they are on tight deadlines?

Caleb Kozlowski

We narrow the path of exploration. If time is tight, a creative brief that’s too open can leave designers lost at sea. When under a time crunch, we try to give designers clear paths to head down.

How do you go about inspiring creativity in your team when clients are pushing for a solution that the designer thinks is second best?

This happens all the time. Most of the time this is because the designer is hanging onto something: an idea, a typeface, a design style. Whatever it is, I always try to re-center the work. If we (for better or worse) are heading down a path, we need to think creatively how to make that path stronger conceptually and aesthetically based on the client’s desired solution. The designer needs to let go of what they loved and find something new to love.

How do you continue inspiring creativity in your team when in the midst of a long and draining project?

Sometimes the time for creativity is past, and you just need to get the work done. In fact, I think the expectation that we need to be creative

Trick #1 – On one hand

I’m sure you’re more than familiar with the verbal construct whereby you compare things by using one hand vs the other hand. This technique is great because it allows us to mentally visualize a challenge from various perspectives.

Which is great. The researchers found however that if you physically raise one hand, and then raise your other hand, you will come up with much better ideas than if you’d simply held up one hand on its own. The authors suggest that this simple behavior sends a signal to our brain that it should look at the problem from various angles.

Trick #2 – Getting outside of the box

I’m sure that everyone has heard of the saying “thinking outside of the box”. It’s become one of those over-used cliches to describe any kind of creative thinking. It seems our brain may actually get something out of it though.

The researchers asked people to complete a creativity test, with half of the group physically sat inside a box, and the other half sat outside of a box. It sounds hard to believe, but yes, the group sat outside the box actually did better on the test than their peers who

02. November 2015 · Comments Off on 7 Things Smart Learners Do Differently · Categories: creativity · Tags:

They always learn.

People often divide their time between learning and non-learning. Learning is usually much more focused, dedicated time. Even our education systems are built around that concept — first we learn for several years, and then we work. Smart learners do it differently. They use every occasion to learn something new — about the food they eat, the way things work, different cultures, different roles in the same organization, history, and the people around them. The world is a great source of knowledge and skills, available 24/7, so they ask tons of questions and connect the dots.

They are good observers.
Walking or driving the same route hundreds of times does not guarantee that you will learn about all the buildings and other interesting things on the way. To do it, you have to look at the world with curiosity. Smart learners focus on the here and now, ready to observe the changes and the world surrounding them. They don’t have to talk much; they will instead ask questions.

They make mistakes.
Most people have a great fear of failure. It seems better not to do something rather than make a mistake. Smart learners exchange the word “mistake” with “lesson.” There

27. October 2015 · Comments Off on Tricks for Kickstarting Your Creativity · Categories: creativity · Tags: ,

1. Try free writing. Just start writing whatever is in your head, even if it doesn’t make sense or isn’t grammatically correct. You can unlock ideas and associations with a simple brain dump.

2. Sing in the shower. This is an easy way to get outside of your comfort zone, right in your own home. Experimenting with any kind of creative expression can help unlock creative barriers.

3. Drink coffee. For a quick boost (and an excuse to walk away from your desk and open your mind), a cup of coffee can offer a bit of the focus you need to connect big ideas. At the very least, it’ll help with your productivity. If you want some science and facts to back this up, head over to Creative Something and read up!

4. Practice. Malcolm Gladwell says you have to practice anything at least 10,000 hours before you can become a professional. So, get crackin’.

5. Make mistakes. Sometime you have to fail to stumble upon greatness. Don’t let those mistakes scare you away from trying something new. Also, if you’re not making mistakes, chances are you aren’t really exploring and you aren’t really learning. Mistakes are the bomb and part of your journey.

6.

25. October 2015 · Comments Off on 12 Things Incredibly Creative Minds Do Differently · Categories: creativity · Tags: , , ,

1. They are always learning.

Incredibly creative minds are always learning. They see every day as an opportunity to learn something new, whether it be learning about a different culture, a new artistic technique or simply a new fact. Creative minds are eager to learn, with this being one of the most notable habits of creative people.

2. They see every failure as one step closer to success.
Creative minds view failure for what it truly is, an opportunity to learn and grow. When you’re doing creative work failure is part of the game, it’s inevitable but it doesn’t need to break you. Creative minds are always ready to dust themselves off and try again, seeing every failure they have as just one step closer to success. Famous author Stephen King received 30 rejections for his first book Carrie before finally being published, he like many other famous creators, simply didn’t give up. He kept on trying until he was successful seeing every failure as one step closer.

3. They indulge in daydreaming
Creative minds indulge in their daydreams because they understand the power of the mind when it wanders. When the mind is not actively working on solving specific problems or completing

16. October 2015 · Comments Off on 10 Signs You Are A Creative Person · Categories: creativity · Tags: , , ,

1. You’re responsibly irresponsible.
It’s not smart to act immature, but you take chances when you need to. You don’t live a life shackled to “should be’s”, “would be’s”, and “coulda beens”. This can be expressed in buying your first home or car, sending in a job application for a position you’re under qualified for but really want, or treating your friends to a dinner on you when you don’t have a ton of money. Creativity takes guts.

2. You understand the important difference between imagination and reality.
Edgar Allen Poe once famously said, “Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things that escape those who dream only at night.” Edgar was on to something then that you’re probably doing each day – imagining the ideal world you want. You’re able to take those fantasies, evaluate them, and put them into action taking the necessary steps to get there. But, as always, balance between these two is absolutely vital.

3. Your heart’s on your sleeve and your soul’s on your forehead.
Creatives are very open with their emotions, which leaves them susceptible to both tremendous pain and euphoric bliss. You are not unlike this. When you’re frustrated with your children,

08. October 2015 · Comments Off on 25 Ways to Be More Creative · Categories: creativity · Tags: , , ,

Here, then, are 25 ways to help you be more creative.

1. Simply begin. Creativity is there all the time. You need to begin, and then inspiration will come to you. When you’re cranky, when all you can think about are all the things on your to do list that need to get done, when you feel that you’re just not “in the mood” to create, when your inner critic tries to dissuade you from even trying, do it anyway.

When Michael Mikalko–author of “Cracking Creativity”–has writer’s block, he simply sits down and writes, “O, lend me to some peaceful gloom,” over and over until his own thoughts and words come. Then he just keeps going.

2. Remember there is more than one right answer. Consider the high school science exam where one question was: “How can you determine the height of a building using a barometer?”

Most students, after recalling the teacher’s lecture on this subject, gave the answer, “Measure the atmospheric pressure at the top of the building, measure it at the bottom of the building, note the difference, and then calculate the height.”

Two students were marked wrong for their answers. One responded, “Take the barometer to the top of the building,