5 Science-Backed Methods to Help Your Creative Team Blossom
Advice on productivity across the digital world abounds – a quick Google search for the term returns more than one billion results. Even the most productive person could not possibly read all of the books on productivity that get published every month. In such an oversaturated field, the last thing you need is yet another life guru preaching how you too can maximize your output. We get it. What you do need, though, is solid, science-backed ways in which you can help your team help themselves. You see, creative team productivity has everything to do with working in smart ways, and truly little to do with mindless, arduous work.
What Is Creative Team Productivity? How Does It Tie Back to Well-Being and Creativity?
Creative team productivity refers to the daily output produced by a team of creative professionals working on the same project. In measuring creative team productivity, the quality of the output produced is a central KPI and one that directly correlates to your team’s well-being and creativity. It does so in a simple manner – the happier and more creatively stimulated your team feels, the higher the quality of their output.
Five Methods to Boost Your Team’s Well-Being, Creativity, and Productivity
In this article, we will be presenting five science-backed methods that we guarantee will work wonders for your team’s well-being, creativity, and productivity. So, without further ado:
1. Try Restricting Your Creative Team’s Options
People like having options to a certain extent. The year may be 2023, but human behavior, at its core, has not changed much since 2000. This is when Sheena S. Iyengar (Columbia) and Mark R. Lepper (Standford) published their remarkable and ground-breaking study, When Choice is Demotivating: Can One Desire Too Much of a Good Thing?. They carried out their experiment at an upscale food market. On one day, they displayed a gourmet selection of 24 jam samples, on another they reduced the selection to 6 samples.
What they observed was that while it was the larger selection that attracted more attention from shoppers, it was the smaller one that made consumers more likely to make a purchase. Ten times (10x) more likely to be exact. Consumers also reported higher satisfaction with the product they purchased from the small gourmet selection compared to the one they got from the large one. So, how does this connect to your creative team’s performance and well-being? Simple – by narrowing your team’s focus, you get better results out of them. Restricting their options does not mean making their work less diverse. It is about assigning the right amount of work at the right time, so they are positively preoccupied without feeling like they are drowning in tasks.
And the good news is you can apply the same logic to everything you and your team do that requires making a choice. Just remember to present them with fewer options, and they will be much more likely to make choices they feel satisfied with.
2. Plan Work Using a Creative Operations Platform
Humans work best when given a clear path to success, according to Oxford’s Handbook of Human Motivation. When there is structure, our motivation shoots through the roof, and the presence of a clear roadmap ahead helps us self-regulate in pursuing and attaining our goals. Elements of accountability and clarity act like constant reminders of what we need to do, whether we feel 100% or 10% on a given day. Conversely, a lack of structure leads to most goals never making it past the ideation and daydreaming stage. Much is talked about and agreed on, and yet little ends up getting done. And usually later than what was initially promised.
This is where a Creative Operations platform like Lytho’s brings immense value to you and your organization. By using our reliable and thorough project management tools, you ensure that work is planned out, assigned, and carried out in a timely manner. Keep everyone accountable and assign work in a timely and fair manner. Our tools automate all the boring and repetitive tasks, so you and your team can focus on achieving your goals and completing all your projects.
3. Make Time and Space for Play
Conventional thinkers will have you believe that work and play are at the opposite ends of the spectrum. And yet, as demonstrated in multiple studies including When Is Play Productive?, a strong aspect of play is crucial to producing higher quality results at work. What is more, phenomenally successful and career driven individuals with big ambitions report that play forms an essential aspect of their work. They do not see time spent playing as time wasted, rather, it is quite the opposite, really. They report that play engages them and helps them gain new perspective and think about their work challenges in different, new, and creative ways.
Have we yet to convince you? Another experiment conducted by Brigham Young University faculty echoes the positive impact of playing games – specifically commercial video games. The researchers measured team performance on newly formed groups using two groups. The first group engaged in traditional team building activities, while the second group played multiplayer video games together. The result? The second group developed quicker cohesion and outperformed the first group on subsequent tasks by 20%!
Creative people love to play – it is one of the aspects that informs and feeds their creativity. All you must do is find some time to discuss what games team members like to play, and find ones you know they will enjoy. You can thank us later.
4. Embrace the Power of Rewards
Numerous studies have established the relationship between productivity, well-being, and rewards. People look for a reward each time they complete a task or are asked to take on more work. We are programmed to expect rewards for adhering to rules, completing tasks, and doing as we are told. This is what our primary caretakers have taught us to expect. In a workplace setting, research shows that people look for four types of rewards; pay, benefits, services, and job-related rewards.
Knowing the above, it is clear as day that you would get huge value out of and increase the satisfaction of your team members by simply implementing a rewards system. In doing so, you should pay close attention to:
- The way you recognize and encourage strong performance – make sure that you are fair, and you give credit where it is due. This is how you tell your team members that no matter your role in the team, your hard work will be rewarded fairly
- The importance of aligning strong performance with the right rewards, at the right time. Research has shown that rewarding employees in a timely manner and with rewards proportionate to their achievements is equally as important as the existence of the rewards system itself.
5. Help Your Team Break Bad Habits or Make Better Ones
We are all hardwired to repeat established behaviors. Therefore, routine is so important to so many people. When we form habits, we allow our brain to perform the tasks associated with these habits using very little processing power which, in turn, frees up capacity for us to concern ourselves with something new. The fact of repetition reinforces our brain to think a certain behavior ensures survival and well-being. This sounds great until we bring unhealthy habits into the mix. Our minds cannot distinguish between good and unhealthy habits, only behaviors we engage in repeatedly, and behaviors we drop.
Going from the research, to break unhealthy habits you need to become aware of them, replace them with new ones, and actively stay away from the people and places that are tied to and reinforce the repetition of the unhealthy habits in the first place. In planning for 2023, chances are you are documenting the areas your team excelled in and the areas where they can improve. If you wish to help them thrive and succeed in the areas, they currently find most challenging, you may wish to draw parallels between the habit sets linked with their successes and areas for improvement, respectively.
Final Thoughts on Creative Team Productivity, Creativity, and Well-Being
Creative people love to grow and advance in their craft – finding the right ways to help them do that will accelerate their self-actualization journey. The closer they get to that point, the happier they will be, and the more they will have to offer to their fellow team members and the larger organization. When you approach work like a game, then all that is left to do is to have tons of fun!
Lytho helps you streamline your entire workflow and harmonize all brand collateral under a single, uniform platform. It is your creative team productivity one-stop-shop. Feel free to reach out to us by scheduling a demo and learning how our creative solutions can boost the effectiveness of your creative projects. We look forward to speaking with you!