Career Advice

Creativity: Nature or Nurture? Hear It From The Digital Native

min read
Wani Azahar

“Creativity is intelligence having fun”, according to Albert Einstein — and we’re not ones to deny as Tim Leung, Creative Lead at Morning Media, a leading employer branding and marketing house, shares the joy in content creation.

Tim brings more than a decade of marketing and digital experience. Having a disciplined eye and talent in creating content that captivates, it’s time to get those creative juices flowing in this exclusive conversation.

Happyer (H): Let’s take it back to the start — have you always had a creative streak growing up?
Tim Leung (TL): I remember having the urge to be more creative growing up, but not quite sure where to direct it. I would say I’m a lot like others in the sense that we are all creative in some way or another, but trying to understand how to tap into it, develop and have a bit of fun with it.

I’m lucky that I get to work with some really creative and talented individuals who play a big part in our creative production (at Happyer). I get to learn and gain insights from every one of them.

H: With so many accomplished projects, do you have a favourite?
TL: I don’t really consider any of our media productions as “My Work”. There are usually several individuals who play their part to get it done. Personally, it’s the actual production experience that I enjoy — the satisfaction of doing a job well done and having some fun in the process.

Of course, there are the on-site productions, where we get to travel overseas! Now, that’s always fun. It’s great to meet and work with new people, getting around, eating the local food and exploring new cities.

H: Talk about fun in the process, is there one that you follow when you get a new project?
TL: I first try to understand exactly what is expected and why. Then, I will consult all of those that I know will be involved and get their inputs to make sure they are on board. It’s also important to confirm all deliverables and get confirmation so we’re all aligned — this will help to set the order and flow of the project.

The process continues for me — even after execution and delivery — as the real proof of success is to know that each person involved is satisfied and happy with how the project went.

H: It’s not all fun and games though — what do you do when you have a creative block?

TL: I think sometimes I might try to push things because of time constraints so when I’m trying to come up with an idea, solve an issue or to create something, I find that if I separate myself from it and try not to think about it, eventually it will come to you when you least expect.

H: That’s pretty smart — do you have any advice for aspiring content creators to progress in their career?
TL: People or relationship-building skills. More often than not, you’re going to be working with and/or for others. You need to be able to understand their needs, how you can add value to the working relationship, and — more importantly- how to manage expectations. Projects with deadlines, no matter nature, are likely to test your patience, so you need to keep your wits about you!

H: What about those from outside the industry — any tips on joining?

TL: Most people are actually already content creators — they are active on social media platforms on a daily basis! However, understanding how to do it for others involves a certain level of understanding and interpreting someone else’s vision — this can pose challenges!

I personally think it’s a great idea if you can actually get hands-on in every part of the production process. You get to understand what it actually takes, where things can go wrong or can be improved. If you find satisfaction from producing content, find the part(s) that you enjoy the most in the process or feel the most motivation in doing, then create opportunities to do it over and over; and constantly try to improve your process.

H: So here’s a debate — Creativity: nature or nurture?

TL: Both! I don’t think it’s black or white. Some people are natural at certain things, while others find a way. We all learn our life lessons differently and there’s no real need to try to measure and compare. Just try and work it out as you go. It’s interesting to think that part of the process is being comfortable with uncertainty and just going with your instinct.

H: On that note, let’s end this with a mini-game. Complete this sentence: If content is King…
TL: Then the Creative is the Joker!

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