Project management is generally seen as an exercise that requires rigour and structure – so creativity and innovation aren’t exactly the first words to spring to mind. But we’re about to see that, despite what a lot of people think, a big dollop of creativity can make your project management a lot more effective.
Whether you’re working to meet deadlines, manage a budget or achieve quality targets, creativity is a key asset in project management.
Using creativity to help you meet deadlines
It’s tricky to stick to generalizations when it comes to time management. And there’s a very simple – and a very good – reason: there isn’t a cast-iron rule for everybody. It’s an individual concept, one that’s personal to each individual. Take a close look at the infographic below, produced by marketing agency Distilled, which sets out the daily routines of the greatest creative minds. Surprise, surprise – they all organized their time differently. It’s up to you to find out how you work most effectively and what gives you the best results.
But it’s undeniable that using your creativity will save you time. Thinking creatively helps you to understand yourself better and to learn more about your strengths and your weaknesses. And it means you can be better prepared – by making the most of your strengths and surrounding yourself with a team of people with complementary skills to make up for your weaknesses.
Being creative also helps you to overcome problems faster. It’s a question of expressing your emotions – which are often abstract and hidden away – to make them concrete and accessible. An individual or collective brainstorming session will get you to ask the right questions.
For example, if you want to resolve a complex problem, approach it in stages. It’s a pathway that starts with one question: why? This simple question will shed light on new difficulties that you might not have thought of – and you’ll also need to ask yourself ‘why’ for these, too. Carry on with every new question that arises. You’ll soon see that your initial problem has stopped being problematic. Give it a go – it’s a radical approach!
Using creativity to help you better manage your budgets
You’re probably wondering what link there could be between creativity and budgets. But there is one. We’ve already seen that creativity can help save time. It’s a way of improving your individual and collective productivity and of better anticipating expenses – and as a result, it’s a way of better managing your own budget or your customer’s. You outsource less, avoid last-minute expenses, and have the time to land on your feet if a supplier lets you down.
And on top of this, being creative – or at least working to develop this skill – gives you a big boost to your self-confidence! Creative people are also likely to form good social relationships. They’re better at conversation and feel more comfortable around others. Being creative gives a sense of control and power that could be an essential asset during negotiations, for example.
In a nutshell, because creativity improves your self-confidence, it helps you to negotiate better tariffs from your suppliers, for instance – and to stick to often tight budgets.
Using creativity to help you achieve your quality targets
According to Ruth Richards, a professor of psychology, thinking outside the box – thinking creatively – makes us more attentive, cooperative, rational and dynamic. What more could you want?
As we’ve already explained, creativity encourages you to have more confidence in yourself. And this is down to the fact that it pushes you to learn new skills. It teaches you to re-evaluate yourself and to exceed your limits. And it builds on your strengths – some of them innate, others revealed thanks to creativity. Sounds like a winning combination!
Because they can solve problems in original ways, creative individuals won’t have any problems staying on course with their progress and their business. Essentially, being creative isn’t just about having an exceptional artistic gift or being able to solve a complex equation in a few minutes. It’s a system that boosts your entire thought process. And like any other skill, creativity is something you have to work at!
Whatever project you’re working on, whether it’s personal or professional, adopting a creative approach will help you to get the best results – and to achieve them more quickly, too.
If you’re looking to boost your own or your team’s creativity, Agorize can help you with its Creativity Workshops!