Planning Season: New Year, New Creative

Happy New Year! Yes, I know we’re a few months from the big ball drop but bear with me a moment. The year is full of fresh starts, new chances to establish new habits, and opportunities to accept the challenge to shake things up. This is one of them.

As the agency and corporate world enters Planning Season 2015, I have a New Year’s challenge for you: incorporate creative. It’s impossible to improve by executing the same tactics, tapping the same brains, and looking for inspiration in the same places. It doesn’t take an Einstein to know that repeating the same experiments will net no new results. What better moment than the Planning Season to think outside the day-to-day team.

Don’t pop the bubbly just yet. Inevitably, every New Year’s resolution, even those made with the best intentions, ends up collecting dust after week six. In fact, the general consensus among psychologists on this type of goal setting is that it’s a giant waste of time. But it’s all in the way we look at it. Resolution-makers who break their goals down into a smaller series of steps are far more likely to keep clocking in at the gym or, in our case, the creative brainstorm.

Let’s consider these strategies as this year’s Planning Season’s creative resolutions:

  1. Get some perspective.
    Nothing pains me more than watching teams ask the same people for the same ideas and the same executions year over year. Seeking diverse viewpoints on how to approach a challenge brings a fresh set of questions and solutions. A dose of outside perspective invigorates the creative juices.
  1. Use your resources.
    You are surrounded by creative minds; most likely populating all corners of your office. You have access to a cache of people who are just naturally good at this. Tap into them.
  1. Put on your boxing gloves.
    There’s a reason we tend to gravitate toward the same old ideas. Change is scary, where tried and true tactics are not. This may be the make-or-break moment in your Creative New Year; it’s not enough to simply source creative thinking. You have to fight for big creative.

We continue to love the New Year because it’s an annual chance at a clean slate. Planning Season is no different. Clean the creative slate and start resolving to do exceptional work.

Macaela joined Ketchum’s Global Innovation Team as a Creative Assistant after graduating from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. She is a lover of words, storytelling and the creative spark.