A wise man once said “One is never afraid of the unknown; one is afraid of the known coming to an end.” We’re coming closer and closer to agreeing a deal, but what exactly that deal looks like we’re unlikely to know until it’s crunch time. The big question on everyone’s lips is: what happens after we leave the structures of the EU? How will the world look – how will the UK look?
Most importantly for us and all those in other creative industries – will we survive or indeed thrive? We’re a positive bunch here at Home so we’d like to think that in the inimitable words of Bob Marley – everything’s gonna be alright.
What do Orwell, Van Gogh and Joe Strummer have in common? They all created incredible bodies of work inspired by some serious (ideological and real) hard times. It’s been said that adversity stokes the creative spirit and moves us to generate boundary pushing work. We very much believe that to be the case. Let’s not forget about our fighting spirit too – no challenge is too tough, no objective too high.
Fold7 chief Marc Nohr argues that “creativity can have a somewhat counter-intuitive relationship with the economy, in which hard times can bring about a renaissance of the creative spirit”.
Perhaps then Brexit will bolster creativity rather than stifle it. The fact that Brexit might mean some of our creative community are asked, politely, to leave, may not then stamp out the UK’s creative spirit at all. We live in an increasingly connected world where satellite and flexible distance working is more the norm than ever. At Home, flexibility and agility are always encouraged as long as it makes sense – as is the case in many of our clients’ organisations. This could mean that we need to respond and simply engage our people in more efficient, more creative and more inclusive ways.
Lack of talent
The cap on the free movement of talent is one of the most worrying Brexit factors for the industry. We’ll certainly suffer a creativity drain in some shape or form.
We need a diverse workforce – not a purely British one – and the key to the UK’s diversity is all the people who come here. There’s an elephant in the room though isn’t there, and don’t we all know it. Lack of diversity in the creative industry is already a huge issue – only 1 in 10 employees are from black, Asian and minority ethnic groups. In looking more outwardly we need think more inclusively. We will need to draw from home grown talent more than ever and that will mean widening the net and encouraging diversity at all stages of training to work in this industry – all the way from school and vocational offerings, through to the workforce itself. This is a chance to adjust how we do things so let’s grab that with both hands.
A global view
Brexit should, and will, force us to think more globally, more outwardly, which can only be a good thing. This more global perspective might in fact help some UK agencies who are criticized for thinking in a too London-centric way. There’s no point in creating campaigns that don’t truly speak to and emotionally connect with your target audience. Understanding our differences is just as important as nurturing our similarities; variety really is the spice of life.
Good for business?
Could Brexit actually be good for business? In the last financial downturn Home saw an increase in clients coming to us for advice and guidance and as a result we worked on projects we wouldn’t have otherwise. How should we talk to employees about what’s happening, and how should we deal with the inevitable fall out of leaving the EU? How can we continue to cultivate and increase engagement in rough times?
This should be seen as an exciting challenge that we’re ready to partner and collaborate on rather than shy away from. We’re here to help, so let’s be positive and do this together.
One of the biggest causes of anxiety for the industry is that we simply don’t know what’s ahead. Which means it’s hard to plan. But plan we must. We must look outside of our lovely island and at the bigger picture: the global audience and global inclusivity.