Creativity enhancement for creative professionals
Hello, thanks for visiting my site. Here’s an epic story. After almost 20 years in academia, I’ve opened my wings and took flight into full-time self-employment. The 1st Nov 2019 was my first official day on the “job”!
If you know me already, it will come as little surprise that my love for creativity research and higher education will remain at the core of what I want my business to be about: how to help professionals enhance their creativity.
As a business venture, it’s got various titles associated with it. Am I now a creativity trainer, creativity consultant, creativity coach? These, and other titles, I’ve been trying on for fit; I like each of them. If business planning books’ advice is correct, then what will settle this will be who my intended market is, and how they would understand what I do. Thankfully, I now have the luxury of having the time to try things out and explore exactly who I aim to serve.
A key question I have at present is: outside of higher education, who is it that supports professional creatives to enhance their creativity? I find it useful to make the analogy between sports professionals with those working in the creative industries. The scenario is you don’t just turn up at the Olympics and do your thing; you’ve had coaching to support you, probably professionals to advise on nutrition, and if you get injured a sports physio would be at hand to get you back to health as quickly as possible. The point is this: to enable a sportsperson to achieve a personal best several professionals surround them and are called upon as an when required.
Following that analogy, what and where are the comparable coaches, physios, and dieticians for the creative industries? And, how specialist does this get? Given that I’ve been looking for creativity coaches for creatives, I’ve not easily found them. At times, it feels to me that the popular myth of creativity as an unteachable talent could be at play if such a profession has yet to be developed or is in its infancy. Indeed, why would an industry to support professional creatives exist if folk either have creativity or they don’t?
Clearly, throughout the creative industries, managers may need to take on such supporting roles (perhaps it’s part of the job as a creative director?) or one’s immediate work colleagues may help; those who work on their own likely have formal and informal professional networks to draw upon, and one hopes friends, family and loved ones are available to everyone. When that works, great; what happens when it doesn’t?
Throughout my academic career, I was lucky to have various mentors to support my creativity research. In the public and private sector, I hear of such mentorship too, sometimes this occurs formally, at other times it’s the result of sheer goodwill. I also see creative consultants (i.e. those with specialist expertise, say scriptwriting for example, who are brought in on a specific project) whose knowledge could indirectly involve coaching or mentorship for their co-creatives.
Or, perhaps this is something taken on within more generic training and coaching provision: life coaches, executive trainers, maybe even professional psychologist, counsellors, therapists? Given I dedicated twenty years of my career studying creativity (particularly around the assessment of creativity), helping aspiring design professionals become more creative, and nurturing the next generation of creativity scholarship, I’m aware that there is a specialism to creativity research and how it translates across to creative practice.
So, where do you find a creativity coach for professional creatives? Granted, I’m being deliberately vague on defining a “creative” or the “creative industries”, but if you have any ideas on the above, I’d love to hear them. Either follow one of the links below if you want to share or send an email to email@example.com.
All the best for now, and thanks for reading and following the start of my journey,
Here you will find my current research papers, articles, and several of my past academic publications. Many of the references below have links: some even work! When I update (which I do now and again) I find links can get broken for my older works if publishers and institutions change their websites. If you do find broken links below, send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) as it’s great to get the heads up ASAP rather than when I have time to update (the last update for below was 10th Nov 2019). As always, thanks for your interest in my creativity research.
Cseh, G. M. & Jeffries, K. K. (2019). A scattered CAT: A critical evaluation of the consensual assessment technique for creativity research. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 13(2), 159–166. https://doi.org/10.1037/aca0000220.
Jeffries, K. K., Zamenopoulous, T., & Green, A. J. K. (2018). Design creativity, technical execution and aesthetic appeal: A CAT with caveats (Part 2). International Journal of Design Creativity and Innovation, Vol 6 (1-2), Pages 66-79.
Jeffries, K. K. (2017). Skills for Creativity in Graphic Design: Testing the relationship between visualisation, written comprehension, and graphic design creativity? Doctoral Dissertation) Retrieved from The Open University (access via, http://oro.open.ac.uk/50274/).
Cseh, G. M., Jeffries, K. K., Lochrie, M., Egglestone, P. & Beattie, A. A. (2017). A Scattered CAT: A Review Illustrating the Need for Greater Methodological Consistency in Consensual Assessment of Creativity, with a Proposed Digital Solution. Proceeding of UK Creativity Researchers Conference, Edinburgh, Scotland, May, 2017.
Jeffries, K. K. (2017). A CAT with Caveats: Is the Consensual Assessment Technique a reliable measure of graphic design creativity? International Journal of Design Creativity and Innovation, Vol 5 (1-2), Pages16-28.
Jeffries, K. K. (2016). A Domain Skills Indicator™: Identifying Skills, Knowledge, or Talents Relevant to Creativity Within a Domain. Unpublished but available from https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Karl_Jeffries. As of Nov 2019, showing 600 reads, which is great to see for the “one that got away”.
Cseh, G. M., Jeffries, K. K., Lochrie, M., Egglestone, P. & Beattie, A. A. (2016). A DigitalCAT: A fusion of creativity assessment theory and HCI. Proceedings of the 30th British Human-Computer Interaction Conference, Bournemouth, July 2016.
Jeffries, K. K. (2015). A CAT with Caveats: Is the Consensual Assessment Technique a reliable measure of graphic design creativity? Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Design Creativity (ICDC2015), Vol.1, 3-10.
Jeffries, K. K. (2012). Amabile‘s consensual assessment technique: Why has it not been used more in design creativity research? Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Design Creativity (ICDC2012), Vol. 1, 211-220.
Jeffries, K. K. (2011). Skills for creativity in games design. Design Studies, 32, 60-85.
Jeffries, K. K. (2009a). Skills for Creativity in Games Design (Part 1): Academic Conceptions of Creativity in Games Design. Higher Education Academy. Brighton: Art, Design and Media subject centre.
Jeffries, K. K .(2009b). Skills for Creativity in Games Design (Part 2): Practitioner Conceptions of Creativity in Games Design.Higher Education Academy. Brighton: Art, Design and Media subject centre.
Jeffries, K. K. (2009c).Skills for Creativity in Games Design: Karl Jeffries provides an overview of his recently completed research project. Article published in the HEA-ADM’s Networks Magazine, Issue 7, Summer 2009.
Jeffries, K. K. (2009d). Skills for Creativity: A comparison between academic and practitioner conception of creativity in games design. In proceedings of GLAD09, Dialogues in Art and Design: Promoting and sharing excellence, Oct 21st- Oct 22nd, (pp. 44-49). Higher Education Academy. Brighton: Art, Design and Media subject centre.
Jeffries, K. K. (2008).Creativity Diagnostics, Mass Higher Education and Raising Self-Awareness of Creative Development. Feature article published in the HEA-ADM’s Networks Magazine, Issue 3, Spring 2008.
Jeffries, K. K. (2007a) Diagnosing the creativity of designers: individual feedback within mass higher education, Design Studies, Volume 28, Issue 5, Pages 485-497.
Jeffries, K. K. (2007b). Identifying domain relevant skills. In proceedings of the 10th European Conference on Creativity and Innovation, Oct 14th- Oct 17th, 2007.
Jeffries, K. K. (2007c). Stay Creative: Adapting to mass higher education in design. In proceedings of Creativity or Conformity: Building Cultures of Creativity in Higher Education, Jan 8th – Jan 10th, 2007.
Jeffries, K. K. (2004). Creativity Diagnostics: Software Applications for Creativity Enhancement. In proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Business and Technology Transfer December 3rd – December 5th, (pp. 72-79).
Jeffries, K. K., Hardaker, G. (2003). Designing an on-line learning and creativity profile generator: A fusion of learning styles, creativity diagnostics and lms. In proceedings of The 8th Annual ELSIN Conference June 30th – July 2nd, (pp.309-321).
Jeffries, K. K., Unver, E., Jagger, B. (2002). Assessing creativity: theory and practice. In M.A.C. Evatt, & E. K. Brodhurst (Eds.), Sharing experience in engineering design (pp. 99-106). London: Professional Engineering Publishing Limited.
Skills for Creativity in Graphic Design: Comprised of five studies focused on exploring the extent to which visualisation and written comprehension are correlated with graphic design creativity
Skills for Creativity in Games Design: A comparison between academic and practitioner conceptions of creativity in Games Design
IPR and Creativity Diagnostic Research: Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) issues relevant to commercialising academic research on ‘Creativity Diagnostics’
Creativity Research Collaboration: A Creativity Diagnostic Portal for the Creative Industries
Diagnosing the Creativity of Designers: Individual feedback within Mass Higher Education
Enhancing Design Education: Designing an on-line learning and creativity profile generator
Assessing creativity: Theory and practice