Many business owners are focusing their attention on things that they can do in order to increase the creativity of their employees in the workplace. Research has shown that the more creative in individual is, the greater their ability will be to work on their own and not be dependent on others. Unfortunately, there is not a one size fits all approach to improving creativity in the workplace. However, there are certain things that businesses can do to improve the creative environment in the workplace.
Make the Office Feel Happy
One does not need to see piles of research papers to understand that a happy work environment leads to happy and creative employees. Individuals who work in an environment where all they see on the walls are charts and grids can start to feel like they are in a restricted area that is highly structured. As a result, their creativity begins to diminish. The suggestion is that grids and charts be replaced with cheerful images that are designed to encourage creative and positive thinking. Inasmuch as images play a role in our ability to think creatively, so does color. Light blue has been shown to be the color that stimulates the mind the most and produces mental clarity. Conversely, red is the color that makes more people feel frustrated, anxious, and produces negative feelings.
Constructive Criticism When Brainstorming
When it comes to brainstorming, the rule of thumb in most offices is not to criticize the ideas that team members bring to the table. Many businesses follow the mantra that everybody has a good idea. However, instead of encouraging creative thinking, this type of attitude can actually discourage it. When members of a team are brainstorming, the idea is that they should be able to come up with the best possible ideas. Criticism and debate are essential parts of helping team members identify what ideas are valid and what ideas are not. Often times, it is the criticism and debate that takes place in properly held brainstorming sessions that inspires members of the team to come up with new, innovative, and alternative solutions to problems that they would not have thought of otherwise. In an environment where every single idea is presented as a good idea, team members are often not going to be as creative because none of their ideas are shot down. Therefore, they have no incentive to come up with more inventive ideas. Many businesses have successfully been able to use innovative glass dry erase boards, such as the ones produced by Clarus Glassboards, in their brainstorming process. The benefit of this is that if a team member comes up with an idea that is just not working, they can erase the idea from the board. Conversely, good ideas that the team comes up with can be left on the board for on indefinite amount of time without staining the board.
There's Nothing Wrong with a Little Play
One of the most famous axioms of all times is that 'all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.' This same principle applies to the work environment. Employees who are allowed to play usually have a higher level of creativity. For this reason, some of the biggest names in business are designating areas in their offices that are set up just to allow their employees an area to play. These areas include pool tables, slides, swings, and walls that they can write on.
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