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Creative support for business writers, pre-published writers and for writers-in-a-rut.

Find your Creative Voice in the Workplace

Find your Creative Voice in the Workplace

I love my job. When I talk to people about what I do to earn money, they often respond with a sigh and then a dismal, “I wish I could do something I love”. I am in a creative environment and my creative voice is part of my company brand. My present way of earning money is deliberate and the result of many years of learning and making mistakes.

The world is changing. The rules for happiness are changing. People realise that making money is not the key to happiness. Today’s fast-paced, commercialised life, people are searching for meaning. Surely there must be more to life than driving to work, doing the work, driving home and then repeating the process all over again the next day. Again and again until retirement.

How can the corporate worker create meaning? By exploring their creativity.

Think about this:

Childhood is about creativity. The imagination is filled with expression and make-believe worlds. Far too soon, the creativity is stifled at school. Children are told to ‘colour in the lines and colour the sky blue and the grass green’. Consider this: have you noticed the sky being consistently blue? The winter sky becomes moody. Sometimes it changes from a depressing grey to a threatening black. Creativity is not about stereotyping. It is about experiences and using your senses to create meaning experiences.

Business is about meeting deadlines, reaching sales targets and keeping a wary eye on budgets. Then it is report writing, emails, agendas, maybe a marketing piece or two. People are consumed in the world of balancing salaries and monthly expenses. No wonder creativity flies out of the window.

I worked in the corporate world and I often felt as if each day was a fight for survival: get that promotion and make more money, meet tight deadlines, get on the good side of the tea lady so that she made my coffee the way I like it. Sure, I made more money. I was promoted but was I happy? Not really. I had to find my creative voice before I died.

I started a social newsletter for the company. The company was not big and obviously budget was tight so I asked one of the staff members with some design knowledge to compile an electronic newsletter. The outcome was wonderful. Another person was an amateur photographer so he was responsible for taking photos at our socials. This soon extended to sporting events and even everyday fun moments in the office. A few people created interesting tags and captions for the photos. Slowly people started contributing interesting news and facts and the social newsletter became a collaborative affair. It also did wonders for company morale.

Finding creativity in your business needs some out-of-the-box thinking. If creativity does not seem to be a viable option for your workplace, then explore your own creativity. Start a hobby that requires creative thinking or action. Perhaps what you need to do is slow down and get back to basics: use your five senses to experience the beauty that surrounds you and then translate that into something creative.

As a writer, I find that writing is not only a great way to explore your creative voice, it is also cathartic. Bad day at the office? Write about it. Keep a journal. Who knows? Perhaps one day that journal will keep you.

Need to pump some creativity into your office. Book a space on our the Writer’s Voice breakfast workshop. For more information contact: writer@ulrikehill.co.za or call 071 636 8028.