Working in a creative field is both rewarding and challenging. You already know that you’ll need to have the talent and a creative mindset to succeed, but there are a few other necessities that aren’t as obvious. There are nine skills you must learn if you’re going to work in a creative field.
1) How To Market Yourself
No one can hire you if they don’t know about you, that’s why marketing is so important. Here are a few tips on marketing yourself when you’re just getting started.
- Make a portfolio of your creative work that you can easily share.
- Visit local businesses that might need the kind of work you do and say hello.
- Have cards made and give them out to everyone you know. That way, if they mention you to someone, they can easily give them your information.
- Make promotional merchandise.
Use that creative mind to come up with unique ways to let people know what you do.
2) How To Pick The Right Promotions
As mentioned above, promotional merchandise can be a great marketing tool. But how do you pick the right kind of merchandise?
- Choose items that will be useful to the people who receive them.
- Everyday items like cups, tote bags, sunglasses, and paper products are some of the best promotional items for a new business.
- Don’t overspend on these items when you’re first getting started, just a few will do.
Getting the right items out into the world will help spread the word about you and what you create.
3) How To Manage Your Finances
Creative work can be unpredictable, financially. You might get all of your paychecks from one company, or you might be doing projects on the side. The possibilities are endless, so here’s what you need to know about managing your finances.
- Keep a record of what you make and what you spend when doing your job.
- If you do any self-employed work throughout the year, you’ll need to set aside some of the money for taxes.
- Create a budget for things like marketing and advertising.
- Do your research to be sure you’re being properly paid for your work.
Keeping track of your financial situation as you go will save you from a headache later.
4) How To Communicate Effectively
Communication skills are important in every field but they’re essential in a creative one.
You need to be able to make other people understand and trust your ideas. Here’s what it takes to be a good communicator.
- Be polite to people. Ask how their day is going.
- Listen to what a person is telling you instead of waiting for your turn to speak.
- Figure out what the other person wants to hear and how you can work that into what you’re saying.
- Pay attention to body language and patterns.
Pay careful attention to what you’re saying and what you’re not saying.
5) How To Say No
You have to learn how to tell people no when you’re working in a creative field. That may sound rude, but here’s why it’s important.
- People tend to ask for free work from creatives without thinking about it. Say no to work that doesn’t benefit you.
- If you don’t say no to some projects, you may find yourself stretched too thin.
- It’s also important to be polite when you say no. Let the person know why you can’t do what they’re asking and suggest an alternative.
The work you do must serve you as well as your client. If it doesn’t, don’t hesitate to turn it down.
6) How To Separate Your Work And Home Life
Creative work lives in your brain and that makes it hard to leave behind when you clock out for the day. You must have time to rest and relax, so here are a few suggestions on how to separate your work and home life.
- Don’t respond to messages from work when you get home.
- Create a clear schedule and let people know what it is.
- Get a separate work email and phone number. You can get a second phone number from most phone apps, so don’t worry about having to get another phone.
You need balance in your life and you won’t have it if you’re always in a work mindset.
7) How To Avoid Burn Out
Burnout is a state of mental, emotional, and physical exhaustion. It comes from being overworked and filled with stress. Avoiding those factors isn’t easy, so how do you prevent burnout?
- Take care of your physical health. Get some exercise, develop a good sleep pattern, and eat healthy meals.
- Take care of your mental and emotional health. Express how you are feeling and why you believe you’re feeling it. Ask for help from those who care about you.
The key to avoiding burnout is remembering that there’s more to life than just work. You and your needs matter.
8) How To Use Social Media To Your Advantage
Social media can help promote you and your work. So how can you make sure you’re using it to your advantage?
- Build an online presence that shows off your work and gives people the image of you you’d like them to see.
- Work with brands and influencers to get your work promoted.
- Create a consistent posting schedule that features quality content.
- Show off your creative personality in posts that would otherwise be standard.
Remember to keep track of trends and adapt your social media plans to fit them.
9) How To Stop Comparing
Comparing your work or level of success to someone else is a recipe for being unhappy. Here’s what to say to yourself if you fall into this trap.
- The work you do is unique to you.
- Everyone has their strengths and weaknesses.
- You’re only seeing what they’re choosing to show.
- Everyone is at their own stage in their career journey.
They say that comparison is the thief of joy, so try not to let it steal from you.
You can spend your whole career learning the ins and outs of a creative business. Give yourself a jump start by learning these nine skills now so you can start your journey to success in your creative field.