Our creative workshop was facilitated by the three of us: my erstwhile colleagues and current network partners, Dinesh, Roopal and I. We conceptualized, created and co-facilitated it for members of a creative and content team of a large corporate.
So, we worked on timings, on content, and on focusing on delivering the best we could do, given constraints. (Isn’t that what creativity is all about?) And we ran the show!
We approached it with both apprehension and excitement. We had run the creative workshop successfully in pre-Covid days, in person. But now the screen of technology stood between us and the participants. On one side was the long list that stood against us: illnesses, vaccinations, reactions, technology challenges, power failures and Internet outages! On the other side, were the three of us and our convictions! And fortunately, a client who trusted us (Oh! What a feeling!)
From start to finish, I can safely say we had participants eager and engaged. We built each day on what we had done on the day before. On the third day, with a group assignment as a warm-up exercise, we gave each individual an overnight assignment.
And were we surprised? Astounded? Stupefied? How about all three!
Okay, let’s step back for a moment here.
A workshop is tested on its effectiveness. Did it meet the objective we had set out to achieve? We thought it did. We were out there (or maybe in here considering all were at home!) to get the creative juices flowing. Tips, tricks, tools, and techniques were disseminated right through the online hours, Through boxes of the zoom windows we delivered parcels of wisdom. Through sound and video challenges, we shared sounds and videos! The participants were engaged. The learnings were applied. The final presentations were amazing.
The ultimate outcome was to be creative. Isn’t it?
After all, every organization has this little virtual corner where the content team is supposed to be doing their job – based on what they are told. “ Team, can we have the 35th post of the same subject, really out of this world? Come on, where’s your creativity?”
And were we presented with a creative output at the end of the workshop?
Then why am I not excited about it?
Because it was NOT JUST CREATIVE. It was more than that!
Each person came up with a creative idea that had its base in a business idea! Yes, a BUSINESS idea. The ideas had merit, extendable options, and were firmly grounded in business sense. Our creative team was ready to do business! As groups and as individuals, the thinking was not restricted to the rendition of the assignment but started at the founding of a proposition, the creation of a product, the possibilities in the market and only then the creative output.
As groups shared their creative ideas, they also shared the business outcomes, the immense possibilities in the market, the collaboration opportunities and even the networks they could build and influence. The conversations moved from the creative idea to the business idea, it moved from visuals, logos and colour schemes to dollars and sense! For us as facilitators, no satisfaction was greater. In our minds, we had not just facilitated outcomes, we had helped shape business. We had watched a blossoming of a team that had tapped into some inner resources and come out with… sheer magic!
It confirmed an enduring belief: creativity is not the domain of only the creative. And every business needs creativity, not just to thrive but even to survive. Our creative workshop simply brought this out.
Do you agree? Let us know in comments below!