I am often surprised to hear that many in-house creative leaders are not running their own budgets for their departments. And because they are not the budget owner, they have very little say into what and how much goes into the budgeting process.

We all know running an in-house creative team is similar to running your own design studio. You have staff costs, hardware and software costs, paper, toner and professional development costs, just to name a few common line items.

Even for small teams under five people, this is a lot to track and manage properly, so why would you want a non-creative leader managing the creative budget for you? Well you don’t, so speak up.

If the creative budget in your organization cannot be broken out separately from the marketing budget, then at least get involved. Let your boss know that you would like to review a line-itemed budget for the following year that you can assist in controlling throughout the year.

For those of you who have trouble getting approval for conferences, membership fees and professional development initiatives, here’s your chance to plan for it, get it in the budget up front and let your boss know what it’s all about way in advance.

Robin Colangelo
I AM IN-HOUSE : White & Case
VP, Board of Directors, InSource

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