In a world in which the humanities and the arts are underfunded and underappreciated, being a creative individual can be a tough way to make a living. Often, you’ll have to focus on your artwork and creative ventures in your own time, while filling a role in a business which is perhaps not entirely to your taste. However, creative and ‘disruptive’ minds are what make great businesses flourish, and your creativity can bring valuable newness to any company in which you work.
This article is about maximizing those skills in order to make yourself a valuable creative employee.
Confidence is Key
Most people have experienced the feeling of ‘imposter syndrome’ – that you’re not smart enough, creative enough, or good enough to offer your own point of view or perspective in business meetings. You might feel as if you have an excellent point to make, perspective to add, or idea to fly up the flagpole, but you may simple stay silent as the meeting drones on.
Of course, this is all about confidence – or the lack thereof. You’re not going to be able to assert yourself in your professional life if you have low self-esteem and low confidence – which means your business will be missing out on all of your great ideas. In order to slowly build your confidence, try talking to other employees on a one-on-one basis, or writing up your ideas over email, before taking them into the business meetings to present them to groups of your colleagues.
Sell Yourself Right
When you get a job in a company, you’re hired as an individual as well as a set of skills. Your hiring officers will take a look at your CV and your past experience – but they’ll also think about what you can bring to the business on the level of productivity and new ideas. This is something to bear in mind when you’re working in a company that you feel might not appreciate your talents.
If you’re concerned that your creative energies aren’t being put to use inside your company, you’ll have two main courses of action to follow in order to bring more creativity to the table. First, you should show off your creative skills to fellow employees and to your bosses. Take the lead on creative campaigns, and chip in with creative ideas regularly. Second, you should sell yourself – and your ideas – in the right way in order to be the go-to person in the office for a brainstorm.
Develop New Skills
Most creative people are slightly suspicious of ‘learning’ and getting ‘qualified’ in something as elusive and mysterious as a creative degree. However, they do certainly exist – and many of them will directly help you apply some amazing creative energies to the world of business, trade and commerce. As such, if you’re looking to become a more exciting, fully-fledged creative in your company, it’s worth finding ways to onboard new skills that you can bring back into your day-to-day work.
One of the most important skills for creative individuals – and a skillset that you’ll find is always in high demand – is marketing. Marketing, especially in the digital world, requires a combination of technical knowhow and creative energy to pull off well. To secure the former, consider studying for a master of marketing online at your earliest convenience – as it’s an online degree program that you can do it in your own time, without altering your working hours.
There can be nothing worse than leaving your creative skills to whither by the wayside when you decide to get a job. Not only will this feel incredibly unnourishing and sad, but you’ll be wasting some of the most important talents to accumulate and develop in the world of modern business. Not everyone is creative – and most people don’t create on a daily basis. The advice here is to find as many ways as possible to create while at work, including:
- Writing creative blog posts for your company
- Suggesting updates to your brand design and company logo
- Working on small design elements that can be onboarded into your website’s design
- Talking with the media team in order to produce multimedia marketing material
- Using your creative mind to solve business problems that others are stewing over
By continually flexing your creative muscles, you’ll not only be able to help your company flourish and thrive – you’ll also be doing yourself justice, and using those creative energies for something productive and good.
Create Your Own Role
This tip is especially important for those who happen to work in a start-up or small business environment. If you do, you shouldn’t restrict yourself to a simple idea and notion of what you should be doing each day – you should seize the initiative in order to plan your company’s way out of trouble, or plan your way into increased profits, all by using your tactical and creative skills.
In order to really have room to express yourself inside a business, then, you’re going to need to create your own role. ‘Creative Director’ might work for you, as it gives you the freedom to oversee anything that requires creativity and artistry in order to be successful. As your contributions gain respect from your colleagues, you’ll become the go-to individual for creative tasks in your company.
Build a Portfolio
Finally, with all of this work in the pipeline, and with your creativity directly contributing to your business success, it’s time to make yourself an online portfolio showing off your work – both your personal creative projects, and the ones you’ve been running in the workplace.
An online portfolio is a collection of your finest work – the stuff you’re proudest of – that future employees will be able to work through in order to understand why you’re such an incredible creative candidate for the business you might be applying to work for. Create and curate this online selection of your work in order to secure bigger and better creative roles.
All of these tips will allow you to find yourself in a job role that’s liberating and exciting, helping you realize your creative energies in a business environment.