Make Creativity a New Year’s Business Resolution
Have you ever thought about the value creativity brings to your business, to others, and to print industry as a whole? Without creativity, we would not have inkjet printing, data collection to measure and report on important KPIs, continued press automation to improve productivity and quality, and AI-driven data analysis to drive targeted marketing, and more.
Creativity helps us advance our businesses and ourselves. But we sometimes get so caught up in the day-to-day that we do not employ our creativity in our workplaces. Being creative requires us to slow down and take time out of our busy days to brainstorm, collaborate, and plan.
Here are several reasons to carve out time and make creativity a priority in 2024.
1. Build Better Customer Relationships
If we can continually solve our customers’ challenges and help them win their business opportunities, we will build better customer relationships. This takes creativity. For example, the end-customer may request a specific stock that could take much longer to get than needed. We could explain to the customer about supply chain issues and hope for the best, or we could step back, take time to ask the right questions, and put our creativity to work. The result? We might locate a label supplier with another stock that will work with a shorter lead time — and end up with an even happier customer.
2. Build a Better Culture
As creativity becomes more a part of who we are as customer-driven businesses, we will build a better culture. If we build a better culture, our teams will flourish. As our teams flourish, they, too, will generate creative solutions for our customers.
Here’s an example: One of the challenges that our team was regularly running up against was the need to relabel carrier cartons. These cartons travel back and forth from supplier to customer, and to withstand the rigors of shipping, the adhesive on the shipping labels needs to be highly aggressive. This makes these labels difficult to remove. Historically, the customer would keep placing new shipping labels on top of the old ones, and eventually, the labels would pile up and get lumpy and hard to read. Not wanting the end user to become unhappy with our label solutions, our team got creative.
They identified a solution: placard labels. With a placard label, the customer adheres a permanent label (placard) to the carrier, then places an inexpensive (and removable) shipping label on top. This enables the shipping labels to be easily removed and replaced as often as necessary without damaging the carrier underneath.
This solution made the end users happy. It made our distributor customers happy. It further solidified our customers’ relationships with us, too.
3. Inspire Others
When we employ our creativity, we inspire others. Who has not been excited or inspired by all the changes we see in the world of print around us? Years ago, I saw my first digital press and knew I was seeing the future of the industry. The creativity in designing this brand new concept in print production inspired me to think differently, too. Fast-forward to today, and we are celebrating the installation of a brand-new HP 6K Digital Label Press that will offer our customers features and capabilities never before possible. That inspiration from years ago has become the future of our business and our customers’ businesses, too.
Just for fun, it’s important to note that creativity does not have to come in the form of technological breakthroughs to be inspiring. Consider the NASA space program for a minute. Sixty years ago, JFK said we would put a man on the moon by the end of that decade. This vision set in motion all kinds of creativity. We not only put a man on the moon, but we had many creative byproducts during the process. Thanks to the Apollo missions, we now have the Dustbuster, thermal blankets, advanced cameras, seismic shock absorbers for bridges, fireproof firefighter uniforms, vacuum-sealed food, and shock absorbing sneaker soles.
You never know what comes out of working toward a vision or a goal!
Build Your Business to a Higher Level
Each time we use our creativity in the workplace, we set ourselves apart from others. This elevates us in the mind of our customers, leading us to higher levels of creativity. This not only benefits our customers. It benefits our businesses, too!
Why not make taking the time and prioritizing creativity one of your New Year’s business resolutions?