The Power of Process: How to Unlock and Unblock Your Team’s Creative Work

by Dave King

posted on 08-14-2019

Today there are more than 1 million creative workers in the U.S. Your work is everywhere, from freeway billboards to our favorite mobile apps. It sparks emotion, makes us think, tells stories, and compels us to act or buy.

Being in constant competition with other creatives for consumer hearts and minds means the pressure has never been higher to stand out. Modern creative teams are consistently expected to push campaign boundaries and deliver inspiring, original work. The only snag is you’re spending more time than ever on work about work instead of the creative thinking needed to build something amazing.

What’s work about work?

Busy work. We’ve all experienced it. It’s the work that keeps your project from moving forward, makes you repeat the same information over and over to collaborators, causes confusion about who’s doing what, and ultimately drags deadlines off track. For creative teams, it often shows up in three key stages of the production process:

  1. Creative requests: Creative teams are often bombarded by work requests from all directions, including email, chat, and the infamous office drive-by. These requests don’t always map to strategic team goals and sometimes they don’t even include the information needed to kick off work. The more time you waste trying to gather key details like audience, content format, or distribution channel, the less time you have for creative thinking.
  2. Feedback: When stakeholder feedback is vague or out of context, the revision process can be both confusing and frustrating. Teams have access to more communication tools than ever before, but they’re also digging through these channels to compile scattered feedback for creative work. Once they do find feedback, it’s not always clear what they should do with it. If you’ve ever been asked to make something “pop,” you know what I mean.****
  3. Workload management: Lots of teams struggle with managing their available hours. You want every teammate at peak capacity, but, at the same time, you don’t want workloads to be so heavy that they can’t take on additional ad hoc work as needed. You could guess at what that right balance is or call regular check-in meetings, but, at the end of the day, neither of those solutions will work long term.

These challenges highlight a breakdown in the creative process. I know how that sounds. You’re probably thinking to yourself that more process means more red tape for your team, but stick with me for a second. What if instead of implementing process for the sake of itself, your team could establish the systems needed to truly work together effortlessly? What if, instead of feeling like another hoop to jump through, your process felt like a seamless part of your workflow?

The truth is, process and creativity are not at odds with each other. When process is done right, your team doesn’t slow down, it speeds up. Great process automates steps, keeps people aligned, and helps you reach your goals faster. Creative teams from brands like Sony Music are already putting this into practice and increasing productivity by up to 4x. It won’t be long before every creative leader is focused on making this same kind of business impact.

A solution for marketing and creative teams

At Asana, we believe that clarity of plan, process, and responsibility is the key to nailing and scaling your creative process so you can focus on the work that matters most. Our customer base of more than 70,000 global businesses tell us we’re on the right track, and we want to share their insights with you at Adobe MAX.

Come learn how Asana and Adobe are bringing marketing and creative teams together to produce award-winning, market-defining work. Visit today for more details on how to connect with us at the show.

Topics: News, Adobe MAX