A photo of the guys and I from a time where all there was, and was going to be, was music. I miss that.
Myth of creative
Recently, Weber Shandwick held our global digital summit in NYC. We learned heaps. Not only from our own digital leaders, but also from the likes of Gary Vanyerchuck. We also met our new Chief Creative Officer, Josh Rose. He exposed us to a world of the creative. What they do, what they’re perceived to do, and of course, what they don’t.
One of the biggest take aways, is that yes, your job may require you to be creative, doesn’t necessarily mean you’re a creative. Something that I toyed with years ago during my first Vibewire FastBREAK presentation on the challenges of innovation and creativity. And then I looked around: and quickly it became apparent how many people had bastardised the term to describe their job function.
This leads to misperception which, in turn, leads to structural and operational problems. Especially around ‘the creative process’ and exactly how creativity can reach its potential, and more importantly, how it is valued.
What did I learn? Creatives are ACCOUNTABLE for their ideas and creativity. Once you draw that line in the sand, clarity is achieved.
Before joining the PR machine, I knew little about them – but creative, and to an extent the role of the planner – isn’t well defined. PR agencies are generally structured by practice (tech, lifestyle, corporate etc) like a law firm. That’s all changing.
The bane of strategists
Julian Cole recently had a couple of great posts that changed the way I look at both digital creatives - and also the role of the strategist. And for the most part, that’s where I sit. Julian makes a great point that as strategists, we tend to try and work out why shit doesn’t work – rather than why it would. I think it is something we learn to do, because its considering intelligent or decisive. But I really agreed with how it can kill creativity.
While I’m giving JC a heap of link love, I think I also readily took for granted the coding, design and development skills I’d already developed. The ability to craft exactly what I wanted online. Digital creatives, it seems, also benefited from their other crafts. Which in my corner of the world is with my music and the music I’ve created with others.
So what did I learn?
As a strategist, I need to open up and. The way I can do that, is probably the same way that every song generally starts with a few piano keys, or a few words on the page, and I look at every single possibility to make it resonate.
My strategy behind my music is clear. And perhaps now, my creativity behind my music is clear.