Large corporations accept certain beliefs at face value. Among them is the myth that in-house organizations can never be as good or as responsive as outside agencies/vendors, particularly creative services groups. It is a daily battle to overcome the built-in prejudice against internal creative organizations.
You might be a pro at spotting experienced talent, but what about when you’re hiring those fairly new to the work world? Employers are expected to hire 13.5 percent more college graduates in 2011 than they did in 2010, according to the most recent National Association of Colleges and Employers Job Outlook survey.
Reports permeate every company. Market reports. Sales reports. Product reports. Competitive reports. Employee reports. And these reports probably head your way with the launch of every new project.
Reports are good as far as they go. But, as you already know, they don’t go nearly far enough. Especially when it comes to providing creative fuel for generating ideas.
A few months ago I was reading an article about companies not being a democracy. The author is a self-proclaimed “turnaround ace,” who offers solid advice to employees about how employers “see” them. After reading his article I’m not surprised he feels the way he does about leadership. “The most effective leaders are benevolent dictators who hold employees accountable,” he writes.
Who you are, how you choose to perceive and then consequently behave in your working environment, is more important to your in-house professional success than your design skills. As a matter of fact, those attributes directly impact the quality of your design projects. If you act in a way that disrupts or subverts the collaborative process, causes your clients and managers to distrust you or your peers to avoid you, your designs will suffer.
Following discussions with more than 60 creative leaders this summer, the omnipresent challenge of Creative Services leaders kept bubbling to the surface: career paths for creative staff. This common challenge pulls at the heart strings of creative leaders, because they want to pay their people more money and want to provide them with more opportunities, but there isn’t always a business case to support those desires. Seemingly the larger the team, the more opportunities that exist for advancement. But typically the percentage of opportunities is similar, only the frequency of opportunities is higher.
In-house design departments have the advantage of a guaranteed client base. In large corporations, however, it’s often surprising how many areas of the firm are not aware of the service. How do you get the word out to establish your place in the company as an indispensable resource, on par with agencies?
Boost your marketability by adding a few in-demand skills to your repertoire. For example, being able to design eye-catching presentations with Keynote can increase your attractiveness to employers.
Communication is crucial for building a cohesive creative team – but it doesn’t always come easily, especially when you’re dealing with different personality types. Read about four personality types and tips for communicating effectively with each one in The Creative Group’s eZine.
Whether you’ve recently inherited a team or you’ve been working with the same core group for several years, it’s likely your team is a mix of rock stars, steady performers, and underperformers—otherwise known as “A”, “B”, and “C” players. It’s important to have a healthy mix of “A” and “B” players on a team because you can’t keep the rock stars engaged if there are more rock stars than exciting opportunities, and “B” players are necessary to support your department’s bread and butter projects.