How to keep the creative spark alive when WFH

Thanks to coronavirus, JKR had to set up over 100 employees to work from home practically overnight. Here’s how they did it, and what they learned about keeping creativity going when you can’t be in the same room

Design studios and ad agencies around the world have shut their doors in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, meaning designers and creatives are now rapidly adjusting to the realities of working from home.

For many freelancers this might just mean relocating your laptop and making sure you change out of your pyjamas in the morning, but for major studios and agencies it’s a logistical nightmare. There’s coordinating creative teams, client requests and ongoing projects, as well as making sure morale stays up. Practically speaking, it’s a huge job.

CR spoke with JKR’s branding executive creative director Sean Thomas about how the agency got it done, and whether it’s really possible to replicate the creative spark remotely.

GET YOUR COMMS TOOLS STRAIGHT

“The number one thing was communication. Any business is as good as its communication, and we decided to simplify all of our channels to Slack, Zoom and email.

“We use email for any official documentation of stuff with clients, but we started Slack channels for all project work and team building stuff, and for sharing internally. That’s almost like the agency. We use Zoom for any calls we do externally with clients, but you can also use Slack to do face to face calls if you want. So Zoom and Slack for more or less everything, and email as a last resort – but we try not to use it too much.”

JUNIOR GRAPHIC DESIGNER

Milton Keynes