After years of designing landmark communication projects, we’re often asked how we manage to lead large groups of people through our projects and successfully manifest what are seemingly unattainable, far-fetched ideas into practical, goal-based reality. Apart from the obvious hard work and experience, we believe that it is possible to have a structured approach behind fluid, free-form thinking. We call this our ideas-based approach and this is how we enter each creative process.
The creative process is one that’s evolutionary. One idea leads to another, which then leads to another point of consideration, which then leads to the next and so on. However, at each stage there are key questions that need to be answered; a key purpose that needs to be resolved before that idea can progress to the next phase. And, this is where the real work lies –arguments, disagreements, clashing of minds, egos, political battles and every known expression of the human psyche manifesting at this point in time.
We must warn that this process is not for the faint hearted – EVERYTHING needs to be resolved or the process is dead. Likewise, there is no going backwards and ‘re-doing’ a stage just because things got hard (unless there was a mistake somewhere along the line). A high level of commitment and support from the team is needed to wade through all the questions, conflicts and confrontations.
It’s hard to imagine anything making it past the first stage, let alone the four key stages of the creative process, being Exploration, Creation, Evaluation and Action. However, it can be done if we recognise the qualities and tasks of each phase, along with the necessary experience, skills and personalities that it requires.
In a nutshell, this is how we work through the creative process with our clients. We see it as our role to facilitate this journey; to observe the evolution of the idea; to empower the necessary personalities to emerge; and if necessary, to guide the ship back on course.
Why not try this ideas-based approach in your next team project? We’d love to hear what your experiences are.