By Katie Kern, COO and Partner
A group of individuals with a combined vision, in agreement with each other and all on one accord. For some in the workplace, these are all thoughts that come to mind when envisioning the poster board model of the perfect team environment.
The truth is having this ideal foresight does not make the case for an effective and invaluable team.
In hindsight, differences of opinion within teams is a notion well-regarded within workplaces around the world. LinkedIn’s Global Recruiting Trends for 2018 indicates more than 75 percent of companies prioritize diversity to improve culture, while a little over 60 percent surveyed revealed they focus on diversity to boost financial performance. Either way, LinkedIn’s findings point to an even bigger picture: Diverse teams have proven to be more productive, more innovative and more engaged – making it difficult to be silenced.
When navigating the power of diversity and inclusiveness within the creative agency workplace, I have realized individual differentiations make team members truly valued assets. More importantly, staying true to oneself is the best skill set any team member can have.
With a firm foundation of individuality and authenticity, let’s take a deep dive into why creative agencies should be equipped to encourage the divergence of viewpoints and ideas across its teams:
Consistent like-mindedness provokes stale environments.
If team members are on the same page during an internal team brainstorming, chances are not many boundaries have been pushed. At Media Frenzy, we live and breathe by our mantra, ‘Go There’, meaning to be brave, to take risks and to always be on the pursuit of big idea thinking. We oftentimes push this level of ideation throughout our clients’ brand vision workshops – a full-day session complete with a variety of exercises intended to encourage next-level thinking resulting in creative concepts and compelling messaging.
Bottom line: there’s beauty in considering all unique perspectives in a collaborative environment. When teams include a unique collection of individuals with various experience levels, cultural backgrounds, and viewpoints on life, the magnitude of inspiration and knowledge is limitless.
Unique mindshare fuels sharing of opinions.
For some, having the courage to voice opinions in a working environment can be daunting. Whether its fear of speaking up or assuming his or her experience-level doesn’t afford them the opportunity to lend their unique perspective, it’s important to emphasize that every opinion is of value. Establishing that differences in opinion around the workplace matters starts at the top.
Leading by example of having unique mindshare encourages team members to participate in the healthy exchange of opinions. Myself and Media Frenzy’s CEO and Founder, Sarah, are champions in the dynamic sharing of opposing perspectives. Our partnership is a testament to the true value in the work we do for ourselves and our clients. While we may disagree on a variety of topics and ideas, we take action by truly tuning in and listening to each of our contrarian point-of-views, and then apply them in ways that are truly meaningful to the growth of the agency.
Building a culture of communication rife with transparency, autonomy, and unique mindshare can serve as the ultimate success formula when building an advantageous team. A key component to this is growing a team filled with diverse and unique talent. The true value that follows is in appreciating the contributions every team member makes and giving them the freedom to share unique thoughts and ideas that ultimately builds a foundation difficult to break.