Revolutionary Measures

Creative vs Business?

Vitruvian Man by Leonardo da Vinci, Galleria d...

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For too many people a ‘creative business’ is a contradiction in terms – with lots of creative types unable (or even unwilling) to balance being artistic and actually making some money. Whether a designer, illustrator, artist or PR person there are many ways that the artistic temperament can get in the way of running a successful, money-making enterprise.

At this week’s CamCreative, James Cotton of onespacemedia entertainingly outlined some of the pitfalls that creative people plunge into when running a business. You can download the whole presentation here.

I’d split the eight areas he talks about into two big themes – not being confident in your own abilities and not thinking as a business. The first point is probably part and parcel of being creative, but if you spend your time comparing your £500 website design to the works of Leonardo da Vinci you’re not going to be satisfied. More and more time gets spent chasing perfection, destroying any chance of making money on a job.

Saying that creatives need to think in business terms isn’t about wearing a suit or spending your days ploughing through spreadsheets. Issues like not getting a decent brief, doing speculative work, saying yes when you should say no and poor administration aren’t making you into a slave of the machine – they are making sure you deliver creatively, avoid disputes and essentially get paid.

There’s something in James’ presentation for everyone in the industry. Most of all it should be a wake-up call for all creative businesses – time to realise you need to marry both sets of skills together if you are going to both wow your clients with brilliant work and pay the rent.

 

 

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July 1, 2011 - Posted by | Cambridge, Creative, PR | , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. interesting stuff!

    For creative people, it appears there is a strong assumption that because they are creative they will not be good business managers. This stereotype seems to receive widespread reinforcement irrespective of there being many business people who were also highly creative.

    Comment by Mark | July 1, 2011 | Reply


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