Overcoming Doubt of Becoming a Creative Leader

Overcoming Doubt of Becoming a Creative Leader

Overcoming Doubt and Becoming a Creative LeaderPiera Gelardi, Refinery29 co-founder and Executive Creative Director spoke at the D&AD Festival in London this week and offered some advice for adapting to uncomfortable situations, overcoming creative block, and identifying the conditions that lead to great ideas.

“We all have moments when our idea of who we are and our sense of self gets challenged,” mused Piera Gelardi. “I had a moment like that when our company started to grow and develop. I felt really comfortable in my role as a creative person, heading up creative projects and expressing myself through creativity, but I started to feel really uncomfortable and almost like an alien in other parts of my role. The executive and creative director parts of my identity were really split – and the executive part just felt so foreign.”

The women’s media brand Refinery29 began in 2005 and focused on style with a guide to the best independent boutiques in New York.  In 2013 it was named the fastest growing media company in the US, and now encompasses everything from business and politics to fitness, has 500 million users across various platforms, and has teams in New York, Berlin, and London.

Gelardi said: “I was having to do lots of things that I didn’t necessarily have any background or training in. I had to start managing these big teams and thinking out business strategies and doing a lot of negotiations and I felt so uncomfortable in these new roles that I started to think maybe our company was scaling and I wasn’t the right person for the job any more. That was a really painful moment, because here I was – I had built this company from the ground up and all of a sudden, I didn’t feel at home.”

She went on to offer a few bits of wisdom that she’s gleaned over the years:

Use your strengths as a weapon:

In her case, that meant using her creativity and listening skills to develop her own unique style of negotiating.

Create the right conditions for creativity

Identify the conditions that lead you to great ideas, whether that’s going for a run or making a Pinterest board.

Collaboration

Once in a brainstorming session, don’t discuss the things that limit you like budgets or targets – focus on the creativity and how to bring about the results you want.

The importance of listening

As a Leader you don’t want your team to be afraid to bring up an idea or opinion.

Find other outlets for your creativity

It’s important not to expect to find complete fulfilment in your work.  Find other ways to channel your creativity outside of work, especially if you feel constrained in your day job.

Most used WordPress Plugins

Top Plugins for WordPress

Most used WordPress Plugins, Top Plugin for WordPressBelow is a list of the current most popular WordPress plugins (to date). If you are building your own WordPress website then these are all worth installing and seeing if the benefits suit your site and your needs…

Advanced Custom Fields

Customise WordPress with powerful, professional and intuitive fields
By: elliotcondon.
1+ million active installs
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TinyMCE Advanced

Enables the advanced features of TinyMCE, the WordPress WYSIWYG editor.
By: Andrew Ozz.
1+ million active installs
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Google XML Sitemaps

This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap which will help search engines to better index your blog.
By: Arne Brachhold.
1+ million active installs
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Duplicate Post

Clone posts and pages.
By: Lopo.
1+ million active installs
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WordPress Importer

Import posts, pages, comments, custom fields, categories, tags and more from a WordPress export file.
By: WordPress.org.
1+ million active installs
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WooCommerce

WooCommerce is a powerful, extendable eCommerce plugin that helps you sell anything. Beautifully.
By: Automattic, Mike Jolley, jameskoster, Claudio Sanches, royho, and WooThemes.
1+ million active installs
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NextGEN Gallery

The most popular WordPress gallery plugin and one of the most popular plugins of all time with over 14 million downloads.
By: photocrati and imagely.
1+ million active installs
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Contact Form 7

Just another contact form plugin. Simple but flexible.
By: Takayuki Miyoshi.
1+ million active installs
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Jetpack by WordPress.com

Increase your traffic, view your stats, speed up your site, and protect yourself from hackers with Jetpack.
By: Automattic, Adam Heckler, Andrew Duthie, Alex Kirk, allendav, alternatekev, and others.
1+ million active installs
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Really Simple CAPTCHA

Really Simple CAPTCHA is a CAPTCHA module intended to be called from other plugins. It is originally created for my Contact Form 7 plugin.
By: Takayuki Miyoshi.
1+ million active installs
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Wordfence Security

The Wordfence WordPress security plugin provides free enterprise-class WordPress security, protecting your website from hacks and malware.
By: Wordfence.
1+ million active installs
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Yoast SEO

Improve your WordPress SEO: Write better content and have a fully optimized WordPress site using Yoast SEO plugin.
By: Joost de Valk.
1 week ago 1+ million active installs
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All in One SEO Pack

he most downloaded plugin for WordPress (almost 30 million downloads). Use All in One SEO Pack to automatically optimize your site for Search Engines
By: Michael Torbert, Steve Mortiboy, Dougal Campbell, Peter Baylies, and others.
1+ million active installs
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Regenerate Thumbnails

Allows you to regenerate your thumbnails after changing the thumbnail sizes.
By: Alex Mills (Viper007Bond).
1+ million active installs
Read More >

W3 Total Cache

Easy Web Performance Optimization (WPO) using caching: browser, page, object, database, minify and content delivery network support.
By: Frederick Townes.
1+ million active installs
Read More >

WP Super Cache

A very fast caching engine for WordPress that produces static html files.
By: Donncha O Caoimh, Automattic, and Brandon Kraft.
1+ million active installs
Read More >

Google Analytics by Yoast

Track your WordPress site easily with the latest tracking codes and lots added data for search result pages and error pages.
By: Joost de Valk.
1+ million active installs
Read More >

WP-PageNavi

Adds a more advanced paging navigation interface.
By: Lester Chan and scribu.
1+ million active installs
Read More >

Hello Dolly

This is not just a plugin, it symbolizes the hope and enthusiasm of an entire generation summed up in two words sung most famously by Louis Armstrong.
By: Matt Mullenweg.
1+ million active installs
Read More >

Akismet

Akismet checks your comments against the Akismet Web service to see if they look like spam or not.
By: Matt Mullenweg, Ryan Boren, Andy Skelton, Michael Adams (mdawaffe), and others.
1+ million active installs
Read More >

Page Builder by SiteOrigin

Build responsive page layouts using the widgets you know and love using this simple drag and drop page builder.
By: Greg Priday and braam-genis.
800,000+ active installs
Read More >

Disable Comments

Allows administrators to globally disable comments on their site. Comments can be disabled according to post type. Multisite friendly.
By: Samir Shah.
800,000+ active installs
Read More >

WP Multibyte Patch

Multibyte functionality enhancement for the WordPress Japanese package.
By: Seisuke Kuraishi (tenpura).
800,000+ active installs
Read More >

Black Studio TinyMCE Widget

The visual editor widget for WordPress.
By: Marco Chiesi and Francesco Canovi.
800,000+ active installs
Read More >

Google Analytics Dashboard for WP

Displays Google Analytics reports in your WordPress Dashboard. Inserts the latest Google Analytics tracking code in your pages.
By: Alin Marcu.
700,000+ active installs
Read More >

iThemes Security (formerly Better WP Security)

Protect your WordPress site by hiding vital areas of your site, protecting access to important files, preventing brute-force login attempts, detecting
By: iThemes, Chris Jean, Aaron D. Campbell, gerroald, and Matt Danner.
700,000+ active installs
Read More >

Clef Two-Factor Authentication

Modern two-factor that people love to use: strong authentication without passwords or tokens; single sign on/off; magical user experience.
By: Dave Ross, Jesse Pollak, Andrew Russell, and Laurence.
700,000+ active installs
Read More >

UpdraftPlus Backup and Restoration

Backup and restoration made easy. Complete backups; manual or scheduled (backup to S3, Dropbox, Google Drive, Rackspace, FTP, SFTP, email + others).
By: Backup with UpdraftPlus, David Anderson, and DNutbourne.
700,000+ active installs
Read More >

Duplicator

Duplicate, clone, backup, move and transfer an entire site from one location to another.
By: corylamleorg and Bob Riley.
700,000+ active installs
Read More >

Meta Slider

Easy to use WordPress slider plugin. Create SEO optimised responsive slideshows with Nivo Slider, Flex Slider, Coin Slider and Responsive Slides.
By: Matcha Labs.
600,000+ active installs
Read More >

Free WordPress Themes

Free WordPress Themes

The best WordPress pluginsSince its inception in 2003, nearly a quarter of all websites worldwide are now built using a WordPress theme so we have put a list of some of the most popular free ones together for you all of which can be found at WordPress.org.

Professional

For a professional and versatile template we like Nictitate by kopatheme. It is completely responsive so viewing it on any screen size is not an issue. This means that you can feel confident in its longevity. It comes with a good layout manager and it functions across all of the main browsers

wordpress.org/themes/nictitate

Multi-Purpose

Another popular multi-purpose theme is Vantage which can boast approaching 1 million downloads. It too is fully responsive and comes pre loaded with a number of plug-ins and works well with the WordPress e-commerce system Woo Commerce.

wordpress.org/themes/vantage

Simple

For simplicity and elegance we like Hemingway by Anders Noren. More suited for use as a blogging site this clean looking easy to set up is straightforward and ideal for beginners to WordPress

wordpress.org/themes/hemingway

Gallery

For showcasing images we like Portfolio Gallery by Web Dorado. This again is responsive and straightforward to use and will shrink to fit any viewing screen. It is simple and elegant and SEO friendly

wordpress.org/themes/portfolio-gallery

Retina Ready

One of the most popular themes with over 100,000 active installations is Zerif Lite by Codeinwp. It is minimal and modern-looking with a clean flat appearance. Retina-ready and compatible with WooCommerce this is an up to date free version of the Zerif Pro theme which boasts that it is the most popular paid for theme in 2015 with more than half a million downloads

themeisle.com/themes/zerif-lite/

Social Networking

If you are looking to boost your viral traffic you might like to look at SociallyViral by MyThemeShop which is designed to improve social shares and traffic from social media websites. This also has great support

wordpress.org/themes/sociallyviral

This is a minute sampling as there are of course thousands of other free to download template themes. Don’t just opt for something that looks good. Make sure that you check out the reviews section especially regarding support – it will make your WordPress experience much better!

Marketing for the Small Screen – Being Mobile Responsive

Marketing for the Small Screen – Being Mobile Responsive

Mobile Responsive Website Design GloucesterWho waits these days to be sitting at home in front of a screen to spend money on anything when you can buy it, book it, watch it or research it all whilst walking around or sitting on the bus/train simply by using your smartphone?

Every business with any sort of online presence now needs to make sure that its website not only functions but still looks great on a phone sized screen.

In ecommerce news last year, online buying figures announced in Europe indicated that 12% of all online purchases came about via mobiles and that was expected to soar.

Customer Care

Whether customers are trying to find your opening hours, directions to your premises or looking for an online shop you need to ensure a fast response and quick loading time – people on the move won’t wait for slow or unresponsive sites. Not only will slow loading cause customers to look elsewhere, research has shown that they are unlikely to return so it needs to be right first time!

Tablets Too!

Of course these days it is not only phones that are mobile – tablet sales have overtaken laptops so your site needs to sit well, look great and function perfectly on a number of screen sizes from 3.1” to over 10” with varying resolutions.

Just a Few Clicks

Don’t just create a smaller version of your main website either. Think about what people on the move might be looking for – bear in mind that they will be willing to spend less time to find things so a simplified version of your main site with content that can be saved or downloaded and perhaps a callback feature may be more desirable. Beautiful high resolution images, Flash content and slow to load videos need to be scaled back or removed completely. Keep the options down to just a few clicks.

Links

Magpie image Ltd offers a complete Mobile Responsive service click HERE for more information, or contact us to discuss your specific needs.

2015 Design Trends

2015 has brought about a few new design trends

Flat Design

new design trendsNo doubt if your a graphic designer you have probably heard of this design trend, it has many influences from the swiss style and bauhaus. Flat design has become more increasingly popular this year and this is mainly due to apple releasing ios7.

Blurred full screen backgrounds.

This design trend is mainly been on websites, it features a full screen background that is blurred to make the look of buttons and text a lot clearer. By applying this to a website you can immerse your visitors in a visually stimulating adventure.

Grid Layouts

Grid layouts have become especially popular on portfolio websites, it allows the creator of the website to show their work in a easy to see grid which can be any size. Some people even opt for grid layouts that show different size squares and shapes but make up one big grid.

Thanks for reading…

What is Flat Design?

Graphic Design Service GloucesterFlat design is a simple design trend that exercises minimalistic techniques such as, long shadows, vivid colours and two dimensional icons. One of the key points of flat design is the usability, emphasizing in UI and web design.

Who are the Trend Setters?

Apple are in my opinion the most influential factor in latest design trends andshowed this when IOS7 was released, stepping away from their trad

itional skeuomorphic design interface which had dominated IOS until recent. They stepped into a more simplistic and clean UI, allowing users to navigate much easier through their iDevices.

Does Simple mean unimaginative?

Flat means simple, simple means easy to interpret. Universal icons are a big part of flat design which allows people to easily understand them and this is vital when it comes to UI and web design.

How can you use this in your work?

All images must be extremely simple and include various flat traits, sans serif typefaces can provide a clean, simplistic detail. Make sure links are clear and visible.

hanks for reading….

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