Creative people can offer up fresh new ideas in group work, so creativity is a big part of teamwork skills. Find out more!
Some people love group work, while others see it as the bane of their lives. Whichever side of the coin you fall on, you’re likely to have to do group work at some point. That might be a group project at school or university, or in the workplace collaborating with colleagues. The teamwork involved is a chance to let your creativity shine!
People have different skills and excel in different roles when it comes to group work. Some people are natural leaders, some are great at interpersonal skills and negotiating group dynamics skilfully, some are exceptionally organised and help keep everyone else on track.
However, one skill will always serve you well in a group work situation – whichever role you take in the group.
That skill is CREATIVITY.
Why is creativity important to teamwork and working in groups?
Creative people tend to look beyond immediately obvious ideas and solutions, and look at things in a different way. They also tend to respond well to change and problems, coming up with innovative ways to solve problems and think outside of the box.
A great way to show creativity in group work is to offer a fresh idea.
So what’s the best way to show creativity in a group work context? Simple:
- Offer up a fresh perspective
- Come up with a new idea
- Explore a different possible way of doing things.
The first idea that your group comes up with will not necessarily be the best idea, and it always pays to spend some time mind-mapping ideas all together. At this stage, no ideas are bad ideas and all suggestions should be on the table. At a later stage, you can refine your favourite ideas and work out the best way to take the project forward.
So how do you actually come up with a great new perspective? The good news is that this kind of creative thinking can be learned! It’s a myth that creativity is innate, that you either have it or you don’t. It’s actually just about practising, training your brain to think in different ways and look for creative possibilities.
So if you have an idea, wait a few moments and examine it from all different angles. Try not to discard anything out of hand. Sometimes the ideas that you most want to dismiss are actually the best ideas! Think about how you would do your project if you had more of a particular resource – time, people, money, space? You might find that you can create something similar with the resources you do have, if you add a little bit of creative thinking.
And then speak up! It can be really daunting to share your ideas in a group, but speaking up and showing your creativity is a brilliant way to contribute meaningfully to the project and be a highly valued member of the group.
A final tip: don’t apologise, put yourself down, or qualify your idea by saying it’s “probably stupid.” Speak with confidence (fake it ‘til you make it) and have faith in your creative ideas.