6 Ways To Add Creativity Back Into Your Team’s Workday

BY LUCY MARINO, executive director of the marketing and creative practice at global talent solutions, firm Robert Half  which connects employers with skilled marketing, creative, digital, advertising and public relations professionals to meet their specialized recruiting needs. Marino manages strategy and operations for the company’s marketing and creative talent solutions teams across U.S. locations.


It’s Monday morning. You start your day eager to inspire your design team. But instead of buzzing energy, you sense weariness and a lack of enthusiasm that suggests the creative well might be running dry.

Sound familiar? You’re not alone. A Robert Half survey found that over half (52%) of marketing and creative professionals are burned out at work. As a leader, you know this isn’t sustainable, and you need to amp up your team’s creative vigor and overall job satisfaction.

Here are six ways to overcome the negative forces sapping their motivation and build a work environment that inspires innovation and engagement.


1. Identify Stressors and Roadblocks

The first step to reinvigorating your team’s creativity is to pinpoint what’s stifling it in the first place. In the survey, 60% of creative professionals blamed a lack of communication and support from management for their burnout, while 56% pointed to crushing workloads caused by understaffing.

To tackle these problems, prioritize open communication. Encourage employees to share concerns, challenges and ideas for a better work environment. Check in with individuals regularly to see how they’re managing their workload, offering support as needed. An anonymous survey might provide even more honest insights into what’s causing stress and blocking creativity.

Once you understand the problems, work with your team to find solutions. This might mean re-evaluating deadlines, shifting responsibilities or making a solid case to upper management for more resources.


2. Double Down on Flexibility

One of the most powerful ways to combat burnout is to offer your team flexibility in when and where they work. That’s why 94% of marketing and creative managers are allowing or planning to allow their employees to work flexible hours.

The benefits are undeniable. Giving employees more control over their day empowers them to work when they’re at their best. This leads to improved work-life balance, lower stress levels and a surge in overall job satisfaction — all of which translate to better creative output.

Flexible work arrangements go beyond just remote or hybrid schedules. Other options include:

  • FOCUS FRIDAYS.Dedicate one day a week (like a Friday) for individual work with minimal meetings. This uninterrupted time allows workers to give complex creative projects their full attention.
  • ASYNCHRONOUS COMMUNICATION.This simply means communicating in a way where you don’t expect an immediate answer (think email or messages in Slack or Teams). It’s perfect for non-urgent tasks, letting people respond when it suits their schedule and preventing unnecessary distractions.
  • COMPRESSED WORKWEEKS.How about giving your team the option to work extended hours over fewer days? This can give them extra-long weekends, which are ideal for recharging their batteries.


3. Power Up Your Brainstorming

Brainstorming is the lifeblood of any creative team, but sometimes these sessions fizzle out, leaving everyone deflated. To get those ideas flowing, try these strategies:

  • SET A CLEAR TARGET.  Begin every session with a defined goal. This keeps everyone focused and helps ensure you’re working toward a tangible outcome.
  • CREATE A NO JUDGEMENT ZONE.  Promote an atmosphere where every idea is welcome, no matter how unexpected. This builds trust and encourages risk-taking, which is essential for creative breakthroughs.
  • GET HANDS-ON.  Make it interactive. Use role-playing, sketching or quick prototypes to keep people engaged. Small groups also boost participation and prevent anyone from feeling overlooked.


4. Make Appreciation Routine

Recognition is essential for keeping your team loyal and fired up. Make appreciation a habit, offering everything from a quick thank-you to praise in meetings or even formal awards and bonuses. The key is to get specific — highlight the skills, ideas or behaviors that made a difference. And don’t forget to celebrate those big project wins together — recognizing team successes builds a sense of shared achievement and reminds everyone that they’re part of something special.


5. Provide Opportunities for Growth

Investing in your team’s professional development is not only a smart retention strategy (95% of marketing and creative managers are currently expanding their professional development offerings), but it’s also a powerful way to foster creativity and innovation.

Tailored training is vital. Offer workshops on the latest design software, creative techniques or even leadership skills. Encourage attendance at industry events where employees can network, discover trends and come back bursting with ideas. And if you want to commit to making professional development a team value, try offering mentorship opportunities for people to learn from each other.

Finally, lead by example. By prioritizing your own professional development and sharing what you learn with your team, you’ll demonstrate your commitment to growth and potentially inspire others to follow suit.


6. Encourage Cross-Departmental Projects

Working outside their usual roles gives team members exciting challenges and pushes them to apply their skills in new and unexpected ways. Here’s how to make it happen:

  • START SMALL.  Look for smaller-scale projects where a graphic designer might work with marketing on a campaign, or a copywriter could help the product team with naming.
  • FOCUS ON SKILLS.  Pair people up based on what they can learn from each other. This creates mentorship opportunities and helps knowledge spread organically.
  • CELEBRATE THE WINS.  Did a cross-departmental project lead to a fresh idea? Let the whole company know, highlighting the benefits of the collaboration.



To tackle burnout and boost creativity, focus on more than just reducing workloads (though that often helps). Simple adjustments to how, when and where your team works can inspire them to rediscover their passion, bringing renewed energy to their daily tasks. The result? Happier employees, satisfied clients and a healthier bottom line.