The Big Picture

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The role of creative director in today’s advertising world.

There is no hard and fast definition for what a creative director does, and like many roles in the creative world, the ins and outs are in flux as our workplaces change. That being said, when it comes to the advertising and marketing arenas, a creative director is typically seen as the person who directs the big picture, pushing a vision for a project from start to finish. What are the qualities of a good creative director? Do you have what it takes? What does the daily routine of a creative director involve? We answer all your burning questions in three, two, one…

Do you inspire others?

No matter if you work mainly in print, digital or film, a creative director is someone who can lead and inspire a team. As the top of the heap, creative directors have to maintain a cohesive look for any given project, from the look to the tone, and everything in between. So, are you good at recognizing other people’s brilliant ideas? Can you help someone nurture a nugget of inspiration to fruition? Do you try to protect good work so that it can see the light of day?

Do you have what it takes?

Are you creative? Are you open to suggestions? Can your ego handle honest feedback? Can you provide specific direction? All of these are the elements found in the best creative directors. The goal is to help your team build ideas through a process of collaboration that embodies the creative standards that you established and clearly communicated.

Do you feel comfortable making the tough calls?

A creative director means knowing when to give someone a chance, and when it is time to part ways. It also means not giving yourself all the best assignments. It means taking the blame and not just the credit. Finally, and probably most important, it means having the confidence to seek out co-workers that are frankly smarter than you are. When you hire people that you can learn from you improve the reputation of your entire team. And don’t be afraid to create an environment of healthy competition so everyone is striving to produce their best work.

It’s a lot, we know. But if this all sounds like you, you might have what it takes to be a creative director.