At Gild, we are notorious for loving to get our hands dirty with a creative project. Although our business has changed and grown a lot over the past few years, we have always had a mission at the heart of what we do that centers around confidence, creativity, and community. And while our central focus has shifted from craft projects to women’s issues (in the form of workshops, strategy, and training), creativity is still at the heart of what we do. We often get questions about why we are so passionate about the benefits of being creative with your women’s initiative participants, so we thought we’d share a few of those benefits here.
Three Reasons to Get Creative with your Women’s Initiative
1. Everyone learns (and engages) differently.
As an educator at heart, I am incredibly passionate about helping our participants learn and engage in the way that is personally successful for them. Once we are out of high school, physical learners (also known as kinesthetic or tactile learners), or those that learn through touch, are largely ignored in training and development settings. These learners end up in all types of fields, and we know from receiving feedback that giving them the chance to interact physically with the topics we facilitate is incredibly impactful on their experiences. Even if you don’t use craft supplies to get creative with your women’s initiative, consider involving something that requires your participants to use their hands and sense of touch.
2. Creativity enhances bonds.
All it takes is a simple Google search to validate the somewhat inherent theory that workplace relationships are a key driver of engagement and retention, especially for millennials. Many leaders of women’s initiatives or other workplace engagement initiatives struggle to increase interactions and build relationships between participants who span different generations. When we facilitate workshops, women from different departments, generations, and who have been at their organizations for varying lengths of time often find themselves sitting at the same table. And while they do engage with one another during guided discussions and group activities, it isn’t until we begin the creative process that we see participants “come out of their shells.” Nervousness, laughter, frustration, and pride are just some of the emotions that participants might experience which working on their creative project – all of which are best when shared.
3. It’s fun!
Effective communication, leadership development, unconscious bias, addressing and elevating gender issues – these are just some of our workshop curriculum topics. While each of the topics that we focus on is important and necessary to the women we serve, they can be challenging. When considering whether or not to get creative with your women’s initiative, think of the personal benefit you have gained when you have paired hard work with serious fun. Even if participants are wary of their creative abilities, the laughter and pride (see #2) that comes from a finished product is always something that brings joy.
When you prioritize being creative with your women’s initiative, you are prioritizing enhanced learning, bonding, and fun. Not just that, but you are also providing the women of your organization an outlet that is far from their daily norms and duties. There are many ways to prioritize being creative with your women’s initiative, craft supplies optional. We are always happy to help plan and execute on creative ideas that serve women within your organization, so do not hesitate to reach out with questions.