Three ways I use creativity in business every day

Chris Behrens, President and CEO

Robustly healthy bottom lines. Tightly defined and adhered-to work processes. Wildly energetic creativity. If you’re thinking “one of these things is not like the others,” I beg to disagree. As a someone who was just named as one of the “30 Most Creative CEOs to Watch” by Insights Success Magazine, I’m justifiably proud of the honor. Even more, I’m pleased that it gives me an opportunity to mention once again the reason I think creativity is a “lost skill” that should be reclaimed and celebrated in global business today. 

While my field of endeavor is promotional marketing instead of the fine arts, I have to say I’m very proud of the “masterpiece” we’re collaboratively creating for our clients here at YA. Here are some ways I use creative principles in my work each day.

#1: Combine creatively

Inspired combinations are at the heart of many creative successes. Creative thinkers who are willing to explore and learn from other traditions and media are often those who make the most significant breakthroughs.

I’ve taken a similar approach in my own career. Before joining YA, I had a strong background in technology. Now that I’m working on the marketing side of the world, I’ve brought along that digital know-how and challenged my team to create high-tech applications for traditional promotional marketing. And we’re doing it with great success, creating high-impact, omni-channel marketing promotions for the nation’s most respected brands. With our tech-meets-marketing approach, our team will continue to push the needle on technological advancements, applying them at a faster rate to meet clients’ marketing requirements.

#2: Dream big

Your aspirations are only limited by your imagination, so I encourage everyone on my team to dream big – and then even bigger. As we’ve charted our course for growth in the past few years, we’ve made some bold leaps to invest more than $13 million in technology over the last three years. That willingness to dream big has transformed our ERP, contact center, financial and HR systems and workflow management tools. We moved our technology footprint to the cloud, reduced inefficiencies in processes, and recovered lost billings through improved contract management. With this solid technological foundation is in place, we’re ready to take on even bigger dreams for our clients.

#3: Look ahead

The greatest creative minds are those who can look into the future and respond to it in new ways. In a business setting, that sort of forward-thinking mindset is incredibly valuable. It’s always about seeing what’s next – what can we create to fulfill a client need before that need even arises. Our charge is to never stop innovating to continue to be a leader in our industry. Our team is already imagining beyond today’s mobile/social-first environment to pursue new marketing promotions for the future, all with the goal of driving measurable results.

Let’s talk

If you’d like to learn more about how YA can turn even first-time customers into loyal brand advocates who take action, buy more and spread the word, please contact me to begin the conversation.

If you’d like to read the full article about my honor in Insight Success, you can find it here.


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