Cosette Jarrett

Five Reasons to Avoid Complacency in Your Creative Career

By: Cosette Jarrett | August 25, 2015 | 
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Creative CareerBy Cosette Jarrett

The first year or two in your first role in the creative field is full of hands-on learning and personal growth and progression.

Not only are you learning awesome things from your managers and mentors, but you’re also (hopefully!) realizing you are fully capable of swimming in the sink or swim world of digital communications.

The only downside?

After these first couple years, you’ll need to work to keep the forward progression going.

Complacency simply won’t cut it if you hope to rise to the top in a creative field.

Evolution is at the core of the digital sphere, meaning its leading professionals must constantly evolve, as well.

If you’ve noticed that you’ve hit a point of complacency in your creative career, it’s definitely time to switch things up a bit.

Here’s why!

You’re Still Learning

Harrison Barnes, CEO of the Employment Research Institute says

You need to surround yourself with people who will continue to challenge you to become better.

If you’re seen as the sole expert in what you do at your firm, it’s likely you’re missing out on opportunities to learn and grow from the expertise of others. 

Working with other talented individuals who do what you do is key.

If you love your current role, try seeking this interaction with professional groups that meet to discuss creative tactics and tools in your realm of work.

If you could use a change, look for larger companies with dedicated departments for your position.

This will put you in a pool of like-minded individuals who can help you grow your skill set and expand your strategic creativity.

Diversity in Core Skills is Key

Constantly seeking opportunities to learn from others in different fields not only makes you a better-rounded professional, but also helps you identify additional areas of interest in your field. 

Jessica Fredrickson, community manager at High Speed Internet says

I started out in copywriting, but never really thought of it as my choice career in the long run. I paid attention to the work of others in SEO, social media, and content strategy at my company and took every opportunity I could to learn more about what they do and why. This is where I realized I was much more interested and naturally skilled in social media marketing, and made my best career move yet.

Creative Career Savvy Comes from Experience

Few experiences in life teach you more about business than leaving your current role for another.

Making a big move in your creative career will never be easy, but it will always be an excellent opportunity to learn more about effective negotiation and maintaining professionalism during difficult situations.

In some cases, this can also be a big eye opener for young professionals as this is where employers show their true colors in terms of employee appreciation and perceived value.

Change in Routine Reignites Ambition

Your daily work should be more than just a checklist.

Keeping things fresh will be essential in terms of maintaining the passion and drive necessary to excel in what you do.

Bonnie Marcus, executive coach and founder, of Women’s Success Coaching, says:

If you don’t seek or take advantage of opportunities your skills become stale. Look for opportunities to work on new projects and maintain your credibility, expand your skill set, and increase your exposure across the company.

You Deserve to Come First

The most important thing to remember as you build your creative career is that you deserve to come first.

Maintaining consistent growth and progression will play an important role in determining your overall satisfaction with your life and your creative career. 

If you’re stuck in a professional rut, take a step back and evaluate where you are and what you can do to reignite your momentum.

Are there opportunities to branch out and learn more at your current company?

Should you take on a few courses in your field?

Or maybe it’s time to start looking at positions available at larger firms?

Whatever it is, put yourself first…and always avoid complacency in your creative career.

image credit: Shutterstock

About Cosette Jarrett


Cosette is a cat obsessing, fitness loving, freelance writer and content strategist living in SLC. She specializes in providing tech tips and life hacks for creative professionals and eager entrepreneurs. In her free time, Cosette enjoys taking dance classes at MDC and shopping for new shades of red MAC lipstick.