Art Quote for the Day

10 Keys to Leading Creative People

1. Tell them what to do , but not how to do it. 

You can hold them accountable for the results, but don’t force them to embrace a certain process.

2. If you want their input , you’ll need to ask.

If you stop asking, they’ll stop contributing.

3. If you ask, you better consider their input.

If you’re not really going to use their input,it’s better not to even ask.

4. Know that they’ll be emotionally attached to what they create.

So, if you  decide not to use their creation, you’ll have to process that appropriately and not abruptly.

5. You need to give them a deadline, but it better be reasonable. 

Creative people need room to dream and let their ideas percolate.

6. Don’t try to motivate them with money, but they do want your praise.

They’ll react when the extrinsic rewards are taken away, but they’re really intrinsically motivated

7. They’ll get easily bored if they find themselves stuck in the routine.

they need the freedom to take on new challenges and opportunities and hate to get stuck in maintenance mode.

8. They deliver new ideas, but they dread the details.

To bring the best out of them you need to protect them from the bureaucratic structure and administrative tasks

9. They need a creative and participative environment

Creative people need the fuel that other creative people generate.

10. You need to provide boundaries, but they need to experience freedom. 

Boundaries force people to get creative.  That’s when the best ideas are generated.  But if creative people ever feel restrained, at best they’ll start to sulk and at worst they’ll join another team.

I try to follow these 10 keys in variation when I teach. Of course , at college level there are some people that are more creative than others….. some of my students aren’t even art majors, so I feel like part of my job is to get the less-sure-of-themselves individuals to believe that they are creative. Once that hurdle has been cleared I can move on to leading them through the lessons and projects as the Creative Individuals they believe they are.


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