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Five Ways to Architect Inspiration

“Inspiration” isn’t some nice-to-have bonus at your office.

It’s essential to doing the kind of work you want to do. We’d place it up there with electricity and good coffee.

As a Creative Executive, you can’t put off inspiration until after all the “real work” is done. (Tweet+Share) (And when does that ever happen anyway?)

It has to be at the top of your mind. Every. Single. Day. Inspiration has to suffuse your leadership and the work culture you put into motion. (Tweet+Share)

Inspiration can take all kind of forms:

– To be their most powerful, creative and awesome, your team has to align around a common goal that inspires them. Communicating your vision is your biggest job, Creative Executive. You’ve got to have a vision and share it in a way that gets people excited about moving toward it.

– Look around your office. Are there spaces that inspire collaboration and interaction? What about quieter, more private areas that encourage your staff to dive into the flow of deeper, more focused work? A sea of cubicles might be crying out for an open area. In a wide-open office, think about partitioning off some quieter areas.

Is there time during the workday for your staff to bounce around ideas together and spark off each other? As a leader, if you create time and space for creative collaboration, your team will push each other to inspired work.

– On the other hand, is there time for solo exploration? Can an employee dig deep into a passion project, or is everyone’s schedule packed to the gills with tactical work? 3M gives employees “bootlegging” time to dream, explore and work on their own projects. A lot of innovation has been born from bootlegging, including Post-it Notes.

– “Process” isn’t the sexiest word around, but your workplace culture — and whether it inspires — boils down to your processes. Which of your processes light people up? (Maybe, say, you’ve got group brainstorming down to a science. …) And which ones smother their spark? (… but your recognition and reward system leaves your people feeling undervalued and undermotivated.)

Be inspired. Be inspiring. If your inspiration reserves run low, we’re here to help you refill them — you know where to find us.

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