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The business world has never been more complex or competitive. The marketplace is increasingly crowded and global. Many businesses struggle to keep up with the latest trends and best practices. The companies that succeed are ahead of the pack — setting the trends rather than chasing them. They do this by creating a good experience for customers, hiring the right talent, and innovating. Creativity is necessary for each of those things.


In 2014, Adobe decided to find out how integral creativity is for success. They enlisted Forrester Consulting to conduct a survey on how creativity impacts businesses. The results indicated that it’s a factor in nearly every aspect of a company’s achievements.


Of the executives that Forrester surveyed, 82% claimed that companies benefit from creativity. The data agrees. The companies that prioritized creativity had a better market share and greater recognition than their counterparts. Employees rated them as more enjoyable, high-performance places to work. These companies won more awards for employee happiness than other businesses.


Creative companies were better at recruiting people for competitive leadership roles. Perspective employees saw them as more desirable than other businesses. Their bottom lines also showed improvement over their less creative counterparts. The majority of companies that prioritized creativity increased their yearly revenue by at least 10%. Only 20% of companies that prioritized other factors saw that kind of growth.


The survey found that supportive leadership was one of the most important factors for successful companies. Workers could be more creative when their bosses supported new, unorthodox ideas. Leaders shouldn’t just encourage creativity; they should reward it. Innovation is at the heart of company growth and recognition. Employees highly regarded company cultures that encouraged brainstorming and thinking outside the box. This led to better performance and results.


The majority of companies in the Forrester survey indicated that there was room for improvement. More than 60% of them didn’t consider themselves creative.


With so much competition, these businesses should foster innovative ideas to stand out. To be leaders in their fields, the data shows they need creative solutions. This means hiring more people from diverse backgrounds. Even if the workers themselves aren’t creative, having a variety of perspectives will fuel the creative environment.