Derek Sivers

Business is creative

2000-04-17

A famous record label executive was confronted by a musician who said, “You don't value creativity!” The executive said, “Oh please! I've got accountants more creative than you!”

It's meant as an insult, but it has a point. We're wrong to think that music is creative but business is not.

Business is definitely just as creative as music.

Some musicians imitate other musicians exactly. Some people approach business the same way.

Most musicians are wildly creative when writing, playing, performing, and recording, but as soon as it’s time to do business, they stiffen up and lose their confidence. They follow advice that tells them exactly how to promote.

But turning off your creativity — trying to play it safe — is the worst thing you can do. Just like music.

So loosen up! Get confident, creative, playful, and experimental. Break the rules. Try some things that nobody else has done.

Think of how comfortable you are on your instrument — improvising, experimenting, and having fun with it.

Now be that comfortable when marketing. Improvise. Experiment. And have fun with it!