No matter the size of your company, its industry or your budget, certain environmental and behavioral changes are almost guaranteed to improve your team’s creative output, attract the right talent and ultimately move your company beyond what you can even imagine today.
Build an inspired workspace.
It all starts with the workspace. In today’s design-centric, user-focused world, companies have to move quickly and innovate constantly and that certainly won’t happen from behind a bland cubicle wall and dull office light.
Large open spaces, cozy living room setups, big windows, inviting kitchens and convenient facilities like showers and bicycle parking are what’s in. But even if you aren’t building an office from scratch, adding a lot of whiteboards and markers as well as providing your team with beautiful computers and other technology products will help give space to the outpouring of their creative juices.
Grant flexible work hours.
While stable work hours make for organizational order, the creative muse cannot be simply willed into being exactly from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. People have different rhythms that make them more or less productive during certain hours.
For some people, the best ideas come in the middle of the night or during a long lunch when the mind is relaxed. In the technology world, for example, it’s commonplace for developers to be more productive during the quieter “after-hours.” They might choose to sleep in later and work well into the wee hours of the night.
If you want to encourage productivity and inspiration, allow flexible work hours for members of your team. Let them do their work when they will do it best. Flexibility also attracts a creative talent pool of people with a variety of interests and commitments in life.
Remember the fun factor.
Encourage employees to spend time together outside of the office. Plan events and social gatherings for employees. You can even incentivize your employees to reach a goal and reward them with a company happy hour. The more employees get to know and like each other, the happier they will be to come in to the office and work, in turn producing better results for your company!
Build a diverse team.
Many creative business owners often complain that they have trouble finding good staff people. Perhaps what they’re trying to find is a replica of themselves. They wrongly assume that having a professional twin would double their business overnight.
Carbon copies aren’t the key to creating an innovative company. Instead, build a diverse team whose strength lies in its members’ range of work experience, education and cultural backgrounds that play off of one another.
Put the team first.
To have a truly creative company culture, your staff has to be your biggest priority. While you may think that your customers should always come first, take a cue from powerful CEOs like Virgin Group’s Richard Branson and Zappos’ Tony Hsieh, who have proved that putting the team first makes customers and even shareholders happy.