How To Cultivate Creativity at Work

risingAccording to creative people around the world, creativity is more than just arts and crafts. Creativity is the engine to innovation, turning imaginative, new ideas into reality. Creativity involves being able to see the world from different perspectives, recognize connections between otherwise possibly unrelated situations, ideas, or phenomena, and being able to generate new solutions.

Everyone has some creativity in them, or at least the capability to be creative in some way, shape, or form. So, when do you feel the most creative? While exercising, showering, listening to music, with your friends, at work?

Most people would say any answer besides the last option: work. If work is busy and stressful, there’s a likely chance that creativity could be hindered. Yet, creativity is so important for office culture, productivity, and overall success, making it vital for the workplace. (And if your answer was ‘at work,’ you just might be a chosen one. Even though you’re one of the lucky few, there are still ways to amp up your creativity while at work.)

There are endless options when it comes to cultivating creativity at work, yet there are a few key suggestions to ensure creativity and innovation in the workplace.

  1. Love your space

No more of that common ‘cubicle culture’ with blandly painted walls portrayed in movies and shows. Creative spaces lead to creative ideas, resulting in creative work. Offices with open floor plans, common areas, and wellness areas that provide resources for employees are catalysts for creativity. Bright colors, comfy couches and chairs, and an edgy interior design help foster innovation. Customizing the office look with décor such as plants provides fresh oxygen and bridges the gap between the office and the great outdoors. Personalizing your designated workspace with photos, your favorite trinkets, and even snacks is also a plus!

  1. Surround yourself with the right people

Creativity largely depends on the people you work with and the energy between them. Positivity energy, optimism, adaptability, and flexibility are necessary for a great working environment in a co-creative space. People who have a common purpose, believe in their company’s visions, and are seeking same goal have great ideas when collaborating with each other, fostering communication and building trust for honest feedback and in turn, better ideas and solutions to problems. Demand creativity by having individuals on the team who inspire others to cultivate creativity.

  1. Get unfocused

Allow some time daily to step away from your tasks and regroup. Talk to your coworkers, daydream, take a walk, read a book, or search the web. Informal talks with your team offer a different view on issues at hand, and can spark an idea for creative solutions. Share your thoughts openly with them and be yourself – this provides more personal comfort while at work, which can inspire creativity. Have fun together and play games in common areas, such as table tennis, foosball, or a board game if the office is equipped.


  1. Find a friend

Having a great colleague at work can foster inspiration and innovation. Setting up a check and balance system of sorts holds you accountable to each other, and within this system a clear line of positive communication should be established. Encouraging each other to try new things or find a creative solution to a new problem, a meeting of the minds on a coffee break, brainstorming in a designated area, and sharing helpful and interesting information with each other are all perks of the buddy system at work.

  1. Unfollow office norms

Sparking creativity is achieved effortlessly when restrictions and boundaries are set in a work environment. Knowing the norms and coming up with ways to effectively break them is a great brain exercise – and can be fun for everyone. Restricting usage of certain words or resources, sitting in different areas, finding ways to communicate internally without directly speaking to each other, coming up with a different marketing strategy by banning your normal target group, or swapping workloads and responsibilities are just a few exercise ideas on how to switch things up and inspire innovation.

  1. Get creative together

Plan a creative activity to take part in at work with your team every week. Change the host of the activity every week to make things exciting and learn more about your coworkers interests. The activity can be inside or outside of work. Examples of activities include: painting, yoga, watching a video on an interesting topic, playing an interactive or role-play game, making videos online, holiday related activities, escape rooms, potting plants, making ‘no-bake’ food together, and writing a story or drawing a picture in which everyone contributes one sentence or draws one figure.

Creative activities are a category of their own, and the possibilities are nearly infinite. They encourage team building and interaction, communication and brainstorming, and creative ideas and solutions. Employees enjoy taking a fun break from their busy day too, so being creative is an all around win.

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