You can imagine how tough it must be for an artist to develop new artworks (AKA ideas) day in day out. I believe this only gets harder when you’re in the corporate world. With commercial restraints, legalities, mandatories and all those distractions… Most senior business people are so consumed by ‘running the business’ that they have little or no time for creativity. I’m going to assume, though, that you see the value of ideas in business and I’m also going to assume that you could dedicate more of your workday to being creative. The obvious question is – how does one make ideas a priority in business? The simple answer is – you’ve got to carve out a time and a place for ideas to happen. At Tongue we’ve literally created an entire workspace based around ideas. Every part of our office is a living demonstration of who we are as creative people.
THE WHITE ROOM
A room specifically designed for fresh thinking with no predisposed baggage. The entire room is white and seamless to promote the ultimate clean slate. Natural light is a key feature along with the collected objects that are all sprayed white. It’s a grand room of possibilities that appears to have no walls or boundaries thanks to its 100% white paint job.
THE IDEAS ATRIUM
Our top floor is perfectly laid out for idea generation. Having ideas is never a solo mission and we therefore need loads of space to collaborate, capture and share thinking. This is definitely my favourite floor at Tongue and I often spend most of my day up here with different groups of people.
Now it probably doesn’t make sense for you to spend a wad of dough to create your own ideas space but I guarantee it will make plenty of sense for you to create a time and a place for ideas. Here are some easy (and cheap) things everyone in business can do:
1. Dedicate 3 hours a week to generating ideas (start by getting Peggy to block the time out in your diary)
2. Have your next ideas meeting in an art gallery (most of them have decent cafes and from my experience they don’t seem to mind if you hang around)
3. Send out a full-blown invitation for your next ideas session (create a moment and make it feel special. This meeting could be a game changing moment if you crack a big idea)
4. Make one day of every month a dress up day (costumes and ‘assumed identities’ can really free up peoples inhabitations and imaginations)
5. Get people to remain standing in meetings that require creative thinking (people will act fast and think later… instincts are everything when it comes to ideas)
6. Play games, have fun and tell stories during work hours (children are completely open to new ideas… It pays dividends to act like a child from time to time)
7. Integrate physical exercise into your business day… For the best results do your meetings while exercising (it’s the simplest and most effective way to ‘get into your own body’ and into the present moment)
8. Financially budget for innovations and flops (if you’re not pushing the boundaries and having a few flops along the way then you’re not trying hard enough)
9. Put ‘ideas’ or ‘creative’ into your job title (everyone can be creative once they know it’s their job)
10. Create a ‘get fired’ policy. (One day per month where your staff can’t get fired… Remove their normal boundaries and allow them to have ideas that would otherwise get subconsciously censored)
Anyhoo, give it a go and please let me know if it makes a difference for you and your business.