You can pretty much google anything these days, including articles on how to best lead a team of creatives. You'd get bombarded with articles that only leave you feeling overwhelmed. So with this blog, my hope is to focus on giving you bite-sized thoughts from my personal experience so it can be easier digested.
In this blog entry, I want to share just one piece of advice that I have come to realize after years working with professionals from all over the globe. Professionals with different demands, needs, and expectations and, at the other end of the spectrum, also working with creatives that come from different backgrounds which means they'll have a work ethic that may be different.
We all are very unique with very unique personalities, perspectives and priorities. While you prioritize a certain order to get to an end result, someone will prioritize their way in order to get to the same end result as you. It's called: being differently. So throw away the notion that you'll always be successful in find people that act and think like you. What you should be looking for are people that you can trust to get the job done. Whether they work like you or not, that's something you'll need to learn from each other and figure out how to have a productive and prosperous collaboration. How so? Well, here goes my one piece of advice on the best way to work with creatives.
Know every creative in your team and learn what his/her work language is. Sounds like quite the task doesn't it? Especially if you have more than a handful of people in your creative team. But hey, you're the leader. And "to whom much is given, much will be required." If leading a team of people was for everyone, than everyone would be apt to leading a team of people. And we all know that's not the case. So if your gift is to lead; do so diligently. Start by creating a culture where your people know the vision and care about the vision because you care more about them and their success. Listen, communicate, interact, delegate and praise the people you lead.
"The role of a leader is not to have all the ideas; it's to create a culture where everyone can have ideas and feel that they're valued." - Sir Ken Robinson
And yes, this advice goes for anyone who leads people. We are all considered creatives; we were created to create. So uniqueness is in fact part of our makeup. Respect your teams unique makeup if you want them to respect yours.