Taking Initiative: Creative Ways to Make the Best Office Impression
Work + Life Balance

Taking Initiative: Creative Ways to Make the Best Office Impression

AS A DEDICATED CAREER WOMAN, YOU SPEND ALMOST ALL DAY IN THE OFFICE, WHY NOT MAKE IT FUN? LEARN HOW TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF YOUR CREATIVE TENDENCIES AND CHANGE UP THE OFFICE PACE!

I consider myself a creative person. I started my life's pursuit in musical theater, though I switched to business school soon after entering college. Although I've retired my tap shoes and vocal warmups, that creative fire still burns. Now there’s the question: where do I channel that energy?


Yes, some of us have passion projects, but what about channeling that creative energy into the job you already have? How can you use it to improve your overall work performance? Let's not acquire more skills ‘til we take advantage of the ones we have!

Some of us have passion projects, but what about channeling that creative energy into the job you already have?

Related: Beyond the 9-to-5: Discovering Your Passion Project and Making It Work

If you've mustered up that creative energy for the office space, let's make it work for you! Here’s how:

COORDINATE A SOCIAL EVENT

No, this isn't just mention of another happy hour. If you have ever been associated with a professional development organization, a theater group, or maybe a hip New York band, you know that you’re often invited to miscellaneous events. On those occasions when you're invited to a fun event or a unique experience, take a moment to consider inviting your colleagues.

Although it may seem somewhat unorthodox, involving your colleagues in activities outside of the office is a fun way to get to know them. If you're excited to bring them to a place you appreciate, chances are they'll appreciate it as well.

Although it may seem somewhat unorthodox, involving your colleagues in activities outside of the office is a fun way to get to know them.

Related: Having Trouble Fitting In? 4 Ways to Build Office Friendships

Be mindful of the event you’re choosing, though. Is it good for groups? Fun for a wide age range of people? Will it resonate with all types of colleagues? Think comedy show, concert in the park, or large cocktail hour. Be creative and surprise your colleagues. Chances are they'll jump at the opportunity to bond with you and other employees. No one wants to be the odd man out!

SHARE WITH YOUR COLLEAGUES

It's hard to imagine your colleagues have lives outside the office. You get so used to seeing them in a work setting and conversations routinely revolve around work. Needless to say, your perspective is narrow. But I have news for you, each and every person you see in the office has a life, family, and hobbies. Just the other day, my colleague—a man I've sat across from for almost a year—tells me he's a DJ. I was shocked! My buddy down the hall is a composer and guitarist, while the guy next to him is a playwright. Who would've thunk it?! 

This is a perfect opportunity to get to know each other. Invest in conversation about each other's passions. {Click to Tweet} You'll find you want to spend your time outside of work becoming more familiar with what they do. That might mean attending a gig of theirs, or viewing a performance of their theatrical work. You'll not only get to know that person in a different capacity, but you'll find you're more intrigued by them in the office as well. And you can invite them to learn more about your outside hobbies, too!

You'll not only get to know that person in a different capacity, but you'll find you're more intrigued by them in the office as well. 

Related: What Not to Talk About at Work

Don't be afraid they'll say no, because even if they do, the next colleague could say yes! It's important to bring your passion into the workplace if it means building stronger relationships with other employees. {Click to Tweet} There's something special about peering into someone's world through the activity they most enjoy.

GIVE A LITTLE, GET A LITTLE

You may laugh at this last suggestion, but a baked good never hurt anyone. Come the holidays (or any time of year, really), the excess at the dessert table can be your next in with your office mates. Place your home-baked treats near your desk and the colleagues will flock. Not only will this brighten up their day, but it's a good opportunity to start conversation and share something about the dish.

An office impression is made by what you contribute to the atmosphere. {Click to Tweet} If you think a special treat will encourage people to get to know you, there's no harm in sharing. This doesn't have to be a daily, weekly, or monthly contribution. Once you've brought something to enjoy, it will likely leave a fond impression in people's minds for years to come.

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Keep in mind, no effort is too small. This is about seeking out creative ways to get to know your office mates and make a good impression. You can never really go wrong, but some methods will work better for specific people or specific work environments. I encourage you to explore opportunities for something that will change the office pace, even if for a moment. Maybe you’ll inspire the creativity in someone else, too!

Keep in mind, no effort is too small. This is about seeking out creative ways to get to know your office mates and make a good impression.

Related: Bad Mood, Bad Vibes: How Your Mood Affects Your Work (And What You Can Do To Change It)

Do you have a creative way of leaving a good office impression? Please tell us in the comment section below!