What’s Creativity got to do with it?
I am grateful to the school for helping me.
But not for helping me with my work!
They have helped me with my work of course.
But the work was not the issue.
SCA 2.0 look at the person as a whole and not just their work. They try to identify what could be holding a student back and work on that. If it is not the work then they have the foresight to look at the whole person and the life they lead. Also they have the network to find the right people to address issues that may cause people obstacles.
Creatives can be socially awkward, and a case in point is myself so SCA 2 are helping me by putting me together with a mentor who is at present also training the UK’s Olympic Ambassadors before the games.
Joanna Bloxham has been helping me with my presentation and interpersonal skills.
Together we have worked on how to interact with people effectively to communicate a coherent brand message. In the business of subtle persuasion that’s important so I was once told by an ECD. This has helped me build my confidence but be more mindful of the people I am communicating with and less self-absorbed.
We started off working on personal branding and what a personal brand is. How to be aware of a personal brand? We did this by defining core values (freedom, creativity and friendship in my case) and then considering how to convey them through interactions with people.
Joanna told me about the six drawers of intimacy used by leaders. I tend naturally to just say what comes to mind without editing to whomsoever is present but I was asked to evaluate who the person is. In the top draw we share everything with our nearest and dearest, in the bottom drawer with people you barely know, one must be extremely selective about what one says. All permutations in between of course apply.
We moved on to body language and hand gestures, which influencers use habitually. Joanna showed me how to posture oneself as though a string is running down ones spine, and how to default the hand gesture as though one is holding a melon whilst having a variety of ‘ stock’ hand gestures to employ in sync with the content of the message to emphasise a point. All this seemed slightly unbelievable but she assured me that politicians who’ve had media training use it also. How you fluctuate your voice, both in terms of tone, volume and speed, how to address a crowd as though you are reading them a kids story. When we (the sca group) attended a myspace conference about online content in April, I was particularly aware of people doing exactly what Joanna showed me and it felt like I’d been let in on a secret Masonic code.
Constructing concise messages with a headline, then content and a summary is also important. Like a sandwich: beginning, middle and end, (not rocket science in fact but worth remembering). You get the attention of your audience, you tell them what you are going to tell them, you then tell it to them, then you tell them briefly what you have just told them.
I have been told that talent, is only a small factor in getting on in life; only 7% of the message you send to some-one assessing you in fact. Apparently they are asking themselves three main questions:
1. Could I work with this guy?
2. Can he do the job?
3. Does he get us, and what we do?
Agencies can only assess in relation to these questions by the initial impressions they have.
55% of the way people assess you is based on the way you look and behave.
38% on the way you say what you say.
(only 7% remains for talent to make an impression)
In order to have the chance to demonstrate what is on the inside you must first get the surface, the veneer correct before people will listen to you.
I think having access to such coaching is part of what makes The School Of Communication Arts a special place.