Collaboration & Creativity

Collaboration & Creativity

Collaboration & Creativity

“Collaborate: The space between people working together is filled with conflict, friction, strife, exhilaration, delight, and vast creative potential”

- Bruce Mau, Canadian Designer | An Incomplete Manifesto for Growth

The buzz around the term ‘collaboration’ is ever-present …it is a buzz-word after all. Found within dialogue across all corners of the internet, academic articles and psychological studies, collaboration is defined by the Cambridge Dictionary as the situation of two or more people working together to create or achieve the same thing.

So tell me, what is collaboration?

Often aligned with teamwork, the activity of working together, collaboration goes further. It encompasses the perspectives, beliefs, experiences, knowledge - the lives and brains - of all those involved in a team.

When collaborating, you gain access to a share of expertise in something you have never practised. It opens your eyes to opposing viewpoints, and challenges your learned mindset, allowing group solutions to be found through innately unique avenues. This is the beauty of it. Without collaboration, the process of working together towards a common goal, there are answers that would not have been found, solutions that would never have been deemed possible, and opinions that would have remained unchallenged.

That is why collaboration is so important. It creates avenues for answers and understandings that are impossible to achieve on an individual level.

Collaborating with your colleagues & its effects in a brand / design studio.

As explained by Finnish professor Yrjo Engeström, “the source of creativity is not inside a person’s head, but it emerges in the interaction between a person’s thoughts and socio-cultural context” thus, when we interact in group settings with others, our creativity thrives through such collaboration across fields and with multiple minds.

Translate these outcomes into a design agency, and the benefits are incomparable. Studios and agencies commonly feature open layouts, communal brainstorming whiteboards and tactile methodologies, all creating a workspace which promotes conversation - key to collaboration.

Collaboration between people requires communication. Communication about intentions, ideas, visions and knowledge. Work within the design and branding fields hinges on cyclical dialogue and feedback, an iterative and collaborative process, spurring creativity and productivity - with collaboration as a fundamental stepping stone to reach one’s desired outcome or ‘final product’. And not only are collaboration’s effects evident in the work that is produced, but it provides tremendous opportunity for individuals to learn and build from each other along the way.

Amongst designers, or in any group setting, the role of collaboration is critical to creativity; the diverse expertise and perspectives across any team will foster problem-solving and skill expansion. The contextual richness of collaborative design spaces stimulate creativity, thus stipulating the importance of working in multidisciplinary group environments.

How we use collaboration at TOAST

Through the solutions, methodologies and ideas it ignites, collaboration brings about change.

At TOAST, if we didn’t employ the benefits of collaboration, frankly, we would fail. Working in silos is one of the least effective methods to forge innovation and creativity.

Everyday, we collaborate on all number of levels - not least when carrying our endless coffee orders up our 3 flights of stairs! But truly, it is collaboration that is the secret to our, and any group’s, success. We listen to each other, building on each person’s individual strengths, experience and perspectives. Our methodologies are inherently collaborative. TOAST’s strategists and designers constantly go back and forth in a feedback and ideation loop. As we listen to each other’s ideas it helps to strengthen the visions and goals we hold as a team.

And, this isn’t forgetting that we are a globally collaborative team too!

We may be based in Sydney’s Darlinghurst, but our humble design agency represents France, England, Indonesia, Argentina, Italy and Australia. Our worldly team brings deliciously diverse expertise to the table. Traversing creative and analytical disciplines, the work we can produce with such wide perspectives and knowledge is priceless when compared to an insular, non-collaborative alternative.

No two people have the same constellation of ideas, experiences, beliefs and knowledge to their name. That is why when our clusters of knowledge are shared between individuals and across groups, it enables such wondrous creativity to be born and solutions found that, to a single person, were perceived unreachable.

We are Brand Makers.
We are Place Makers.
We are Future Makers.

At TOAST, we are Makers.