5 Ways to Bring Creativity Back to Your Culture
Here are five changes you can make today to bring creativity back to your culture.
Offer Unlimited Vacation
Most managers think vacation policies sound great, on paper. It lets them keep track of how hard people are working and justify why a seat is empty.
To employees, however, vacation policies do just the opposite. They seem to say you don’t don’t trust them to strike a balance, and like a blaring siren, it serves as a reminder of how little they get to travel. On top of that, most companies cap the number of vacation hours employees can accrue, which doesn’t work to their actual benefit.
Offering unlimited vacation won’t make people skip work every Friday or leave people hanging at deadlines. Instead, it will give them control to choose when they decide to work and when they don’t. Although this may seem trivial, being able to choose means everything in a creative culture.
Let Employees Work Remotely
Let’s face it: Your office is not where everyone does their best work, not even you. And while offices are great for building comaradery, they can also be rather distracting.
Working remotely doesn’t always have to mean being in different cities. As Inc. contributor Jason Fried points out, “Remote just means you’re not in the office from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. all day long.” His company, 37 Signals, has built an entire culture around people who work from anywhere. His latest book, Remote, will inspire you to think differently about how your own team does its best work.
Ditch the Meetings
The worst part about meetings is that they’re incredibly easy to add. Even if you make an agenda, the number will only go up as you grow in size. As a result, little creative thinking will get done during the day.
You’ll start to notice people takings their evenings and weekends to do their best work, when they know they can dive in without distractions. The 30 or 60 minutes in between meetings won’t allow them to really get things done, so they’ll end up wasting time playing email ping-pong.
Try to cut meetings down to one daily standup. Even if the entire organization has to dial in, it shouldn’t last more than 20 minutes, if it’s done right. This will keep everyone on track and then free them up to use their day as they want.
Nix Department Goals
Department goals often help managers more than employees. Generally, you’ll end up wasting valuable hours setting new goals and then even more time asking why you didn’t hit them.
Worse still, each department relies on resources they don’t control and departments they’re not a part of to reach their goals. This can result in teams signing up for work they were unaware of, which can lead to arguments about whose goals are more important.
Instead, try focusing the entire company around two or three mega goals and enable them to figure out how they accomplish them. This helps everyone be creative while making it clear what they’re in for.
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