Being a leader in a world where everything is fast-paced and constantly changing is tough. Managing a creative team is even more challenging. Unlike traditional teams, creative teams require room for individuality and imagination. They thrive in an environment that stimulates collaboration, idea-sharing, and experimentation. Creative leaders' challenge is maintaining balance and order without stifling creativity. While traditional leaders lean towards exerting control over the team, effective leaders influence their team to bring out the best in them. In this blog post, we'll explore why it's better to influence your team rather than control it.
Influence fosters creativity and collaboration.
A team that's controlled feels more like a prison than a workspace. When creatives feel constrained, they tend to feel demotivated and unhappy. Conversely, leaders who lead by influence empower their team to think creatively, work collaboratively, and take the initiative. Leaders can influence by allowing their team members to take charge of specific projects and be responsible for their outcomes. Empowering the team creates a sense of ownership, leading to more creativity and innovation.
Control stifles growth and development.
Leaders who micromanage their teams may get immediate results, but in the long run, they're stifling the growth and development of employees. When leaders try to control their teams, they withhold opportunities for learning and improvement. Rather than instructing team members on the "how-to" of their tasks, influential leaders guide them in developing the skills needed to excel. This way, they're helping the team to grow and learn, making them more self-reliant and able to handle challenges in the future.
Influence leads to better decision-making and problem-solving.
Creativity thrives in environments that allow for diversity and experimentation. When team members can contribute their ideas and thoughts, they become better decision-makers and problem-solvers. Leaders who influence their team members to think critically and explore alternative methods foster a more productive and effective working environment. With increased thought diversity, the team is more likely to solve problems and tackle challenges with a creative mindset.
Control creates a culture of fear; influence creates one of trust.
Leaders who control their teams tend to instill a culture of fear. Such an environment makes people less likely to come forward with candid feedback or ideas, fearing retaliation. On the other hand, leaders who influence their team build a culture of trust, wherein team members feel secure to speak their truth without reprisal. The outcome is a team that feels respected for their abilities, leading to better collaboration and more creative solutions.
Influence creates a sense of belonging and loyalty.
People tend to be loyal to leaders who value and respect them. By exercising influence rather than control, successful leaders create a sense of belonging and loyalty among their team members. When creatives consistently feel valued, appreciated, and supported by their leaders, they will likely remain committed to the organization.
Creative teams require leaders who can balance structure and creativity. While structurally inclined leaders might lean towards exerting control over their teams, effective leaders know how to influence their teams to bring out the best in them. Leaders can create a more productive, creative, and dynamic working environment by empowering their team members, leading by example, and creating a culture of trust and openness. By influencing instead of controlling, not only do you elevate the potential of your team, but you also create an invaluable sense of loyalty and commitment among your team members. Go forth and influence your team to new heights!