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Planting Creative Inspiration: An Interview with Matt Mattus

Posted by Doug White on Tue, Jul 29, 2014 @ 05:00 AM

Meet Matt Mattus: influential designer and noted horticulturist.

Matt Mattus is a leader in the design industry, but he's not your garden variety creative professional. As a futurist and a senior principal designer at Hasbro, he shares his wisdom and insights about emerging trends at industry conferences. But Mattus is also famous in the world of horticulture. His influential blog, Growing With Plants, has a wide and enthusiastic audience in what he endearingly refers to as the "plant community."

Topics: Creativity, Design

Hot Job: Front-End Web Developer

Posted by The Creative Group on Mon, Jul 28, 2014 @ 05:00 AM

The designs? Solid. The concepts? Exceptionally user friendly. Now it's time to put these digital creations into motion and make them shine. Enter the front-end web developer.

There's a lot of talk about user experience (UX) these days. A great user experience starts with a functional and attractive digital environment for users to explore. The best creative departments realize this. They go beyond ideas and enter the realm of implementation with the help of front-end web developers.

Topics: Job Search, Technology, Salary Trends, Job Title/Description

'No Plastic Sleeves' Excerpt: Creative Career Portfolio Pointers

Posted by Alison Strickland on Fri, Jul 25, 2014 @ 06:05 AM

When it comes to your career portfolio, one bad apple spoils the bunch. That's why it's crucial to select your pieces wisely.

In their new book, No Plastic Sleeves: The Complete Portfolio Guide for Photographers and Designers, authors Larry Volk and Danielle Currier guide you through the process of conceptualizing, designing and developing all the interconnected aspects of your total portfolio package. Here's an excerpt to whet your appetite.

Topics: Books, Portfolio, Personal Branding

7 Reasons Your Boss Hates You

Posted by Adam Kleinberg on Wed, Jul 23, 2014 @ 06:15 AM

Passed up for a plum assignment, promotion or raise? It could be because your boss doesn't like you.

A couple of years ago, I wrote an article called "7 Reasons Your Employees Hate You." It was a missive to managers struggling as their career paths thrust them into roles where driving behavior from others was the focus of their job. Of course, we're all interested in our career path. And unless you've started your own company, you've got a boss. For many of us, that boss holds the power to help you on your way down that path – as long as you don't piss him or her off.

The truth is, I don't hate any of my employees. I only hire people I really like. Yet, over the years, I've certainly seen a few behaviors that have ticked me off. Here are seven of them.

Topics: Career Advice

In the Hot Seat: How to Answer Tough Interview Questions

Posted by Doug White on Mon, Jul 21, 2014 @ 06:10 AM

Job interviews can be challenging, nerve-wracking experiences. Preparation is the key. Here's advice on tackling five tricky interview questions.

The Creative Group recently asked more than 400 advertising and marketing executives this question: What is the toughest or trickiest interview question you ask to weed out poor candidates? 

Topics: Interviewing, Job Search

Social Media News: How to Create Smart Social Strategies for B2B Clients

Posted by Megan Lane Patrick on Fri, Jul 18, 2014 @ 05:30 AM

Just because your client markets chemicals rather than cupcakes doesn't mean you shouldn't sell them social media services. Learn how to help B2B brands make the most of these powerful promotional tools.

Big brands are all over social media today. You can't check Facebook to see what your friends are doing without being blasted with sponsored posts from clothing retailers and pizza chains. Soft drink companies tweet everything from links to coupons to jokes about their rivals. And Pinterest just announced native advertising on their platform. 

Topics: Social Media, Client Management

The Fine Art of Selling Ideas

Posted by Ed Roberts on Wed, Jul 16, 2014 @ 05:30 AM

Knowing how to sell ideas is a critical skill to add to your professional toolkit. Build a successful career in the creative industry by mastering these four key sales strategies.

The day I entered high school I already knew exactly what I wanted to do for a living. I was going to be a designer­. Whether it was designing skyscrapers or comic books, my goal was to do what I loved and create art every day.

Topics: Career Advice, Skills Development

Hot Job: Marketing Communications Manager

Posted by The Creative Group on Mon, Jul 14, 2014 @ 06:22 AM

They're talented storytellers. Experts on what's new and now. Adept at developing cost-effective ways of promoting products and services. They're marketing communications managers ­– and they're invaluable to a company's bottom line.

The competition for consumers' attention grows stronger every day. That's why companies need specialists: marketing communications managers – also known as MarCom managers. These professionals know how to develop marketing strategies that will attract customers. They don't just take ownership of business intelligence, they take it to the next level to develop and enhance a brand.

Topics: Job Search, Marketing, Salary Trends, Job Title/Description

What We've Got Here Is a Failure to Communicate

Posted by Gavin McMahon on Thu, Jul 10, 2014 @ 05:45 AM

If we were left bleeding in a ditch like Cool Hand Luke, and were succinctly notified, "What we've got here is a failure to communicate," we might all get a little better at communicating.

There's nothing like a painful lesson but, usually, that doesn't happen. Most often, when communication breaks down, nothing happens. There is no message, just missage.

Hitting the mark, getting through, clearing the clutter and getting got – that's the business of a leader. Conversations are the business of a leader. And developing the skill of artful conversations – whether selling, communicating a strategy, or dealing with a customer service issue – is a lifetime's work.

Topics: Skills Development, Leadership, Management

Alone With Your Thoughts

Posted by Todd Henry on Wed, Jul 9, 2014 @ 05:00 AM

When was the last time you could say that you were actually "alone with your thoughts"? I don't mean sitting on a bus checking your Twitter feed, or standing in line at a coffee shop scrolling through your email, or even sitting on a sofa reading a book. I mean genuinely alone with your thoughts.

Topics: Creativity