Leadership in Cultural and Creative Industry

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Leadership is an essential aspect of the cultural and creative industry. Like other industries, management and surviving in the dynamic system of the creative industry requires effective capabilities. To promote the value of culture in the sector, participants should work in harmony and understanding. Arts and design need individuals to have vibrant qualities that can enable quick changes, solve issues, or even formulate interesting new ideas (Mallia, 2019).

Despite the artists’ efforts to make the industry lively for decades, there are still looming challenges and shortcomings that hinder the performance. This essay will analyze most of the encounters and opportunities for leadership in the cultural and creative sector both in the current and future. It will focus on personal reflection on challenges and opportunities of leadership based on experience and ways to manifest good management in the future.

Generally, the creative industry is one of the diverse fields containing people from all races worldwide. In this sector, individual cultures play a vital role as most of the arts and activities performed are linked to a person’s experience about the native cultural background. Encompassing people with different values makes it somewhat challenging and requires strong personalities to remain effective in the platform. Arts majorly involve group involvement to make a given content. It, therefore, needs proper leadership styles to propel its success from one generation to another.

Challenges for Leadership

In the creative sector, various challenges make it difficult to be productive in the industry. Most artists and other relevant stakeholders have different perspectives that make it complex to coordinate the activities. Some of the encounters in the industry include lack of respect, communication problems, unhealthy competition amongst the participants, cultural issues, and limited motivation.


Dealing with a group of people with various perceptions becomes a challenge as some, if not all, may not conform to how they are being guided. Commonly, most individuals would have to dislike the leader even without a genuine reason behind it. In some cases, they tend to be against the notion of being led or shown direction on what to be done (Alacovska & Bissonnette, 2021). During school times, I used to be given the role to direct and manage class members on some topic revision. The majority at first showed a high level of resistance, and they were not for the idea. I then formulated criteria to involve them in the role, allowing them to lead in presenting a given subtopic (Akpoviroro, Kadiri, & Owotutu, 2018). The next time when I was handed the duty again, it was a participative class where all the classmates were actively involved. From this perspective, the participatory leadership style was significant in changing the learning atmosphere.

Communication Problems

In any system, performance is linked to effective communication. Cases of misinterpretation or misinformation can be destructive in the industry. Being a leader, one must ensure the information being passed reaches the expected target to avoid confusion that can cause long-term impact (Paul & David, 2017). In school, I experienced cases where most learners failed to show up during cultural practice.

When I tried to find out, they claimed that the message was not clear hence were confused. To be effective in delivering details, it is required to be clear and precise so that people can understand and master the content of the message (Skavronska, 2017). It requires listening skills and attention to understand and receive feedback from the people involved. Giving attention to every detail from the artists can boost their morale to share their views, therefore, lowering related misunderstandings.

Unhealthy Competition

In the creative industry, most participants tend to outshine one another, leading to some malicious acts. As a leader, such cases require deep insight and analysis to determine the main course and effects. When I was working with the Mabel organization, many incidences of unfair competition were reported to me. To tame bad practices, I had to find a balance to influence moral behaviors in the system. I counseled and informed people concerning the effects of such conduct when competing with one another. While everybody wants to dominate the industry, leaders should encourage teamwork and togetherness amongst artists to avoid unhealthy competition that can leave other participants venerable.

Culture Issues

The culture issue is a major problem in the cultural and creative industry. The people working in the system have different behavioral habits that limit innovation and engagement in activities. For example, during my internship program at the Mabel organization, there were cases of individuals who gossiped about others at work. The manager had to talk about it and share the effects of backbiting in the company. I learned that as a leader, it is my responsibility to understand why people practice some habits and advise them accordingly to minimize effects. In the future, I would ensure I comprehend cultural values that may impact the effectiveness of an organization and advocate for better conduct amongst participants.


Just like workers in other industries, artists also need to be motivated and inspired to deliver their best on the platform. To create a positive attitude amongst people, as a leader, self-awareness and motivation are necessary. In the organization, individuals will be looking forward to seeing the impact of their leader on the activities. In most cases, applying the transactional leadership style proves effective.

This situation requires the leader to use techniques like offering rewards based on the level of performance displayed by an individual (Xu & Wang, 2018). During the school concert, I was leading a team of talented students in producing some arts. It reached a point when some were unwilling to contribute, so I had to offer them free lunch so that they could dedicate themselves to the project.

From that day, I realized that when individuals feel appreciated and motivated, their ability to add more effort to their work is increased. Furthermore, having a constructive vision that connects to all the group members also makes them feel encouraged and determined in their roles (Gundolf & Gast, 2018). Similarly, being part of the team performing the task also inspires individuals; therefore, it is appropriate for a leader to combine forces with the team to enhance their effectiveness.

Opportunities for Leadership

Rapid development in the creative industry requires strong leadership abilities to make it more productive in the economy. Limited guidance may result in ineffective management, leaving some potential skills unexplored. Cultural diversity and continuous globalization need the industry to transform to accommodate the current and future changes in the values and cultures of people. Some of the areas that present opportunities for leadership are discussed below.

Group Development

In class, when the tutor introduced the concept of art and design during the first year, students were scared. The teacher used some approaches to ensure he created a different perception on learners about the subject, and before the year ended, everyone was interested in the course. Increasing the overall self-development of every team member would impact the overall outcome of the practice (Busari, Khan, Abdullah, & Mughal, 2019). For people to become developed and geared towards achieving the best outcome, they should be transformed and put themselves into the leadership role.

The creative sector is continuously advancing; therefore, constant change is necessary to maintain the focus. For example, during the presentation of some pieces of art, some students had difficulty participating because they lacked the courage to showcase the talents they had. After the session, I had to regroup members set visions that would allow the individuals within the groups to adjust to the environment for effective delivery. As a leader, I had to change the members’ perception from the self-point of view to the overall group, thus making them think critically of significant ways to increase the effectiveness of the art. Participants should change the tendency of focusing on themselves excess and practice valuing the group effort to enhance their ability to develop the team.


In an organization that involves people, there is a likelihood of misunderstanding amongst the individuals. When there are issues, the performance tends to reduce as the affected persons may quit or stop contributing. A good leader should be able to identify and provide a solution to any kind of problem that occurs within the industry. One day after completing course work, during review time, one of the students misquoted a statement from a fellow learner, and it led to a heated conversation. I had to intervene to calm the pressure between the colleagues. I began by identifying what caused the issue and listening to everyone’s opinion about it. In the end, I managed to reconcile and eliminate the grudge.

Inability to solve issues due to unreliable or inexperienced leaders has led to the disintegration of most of the once renowned creative organizations. It, therefore, implies that the ability of the leader to handle situations can affect the firm. This calls for effective leadership with competent persons who can impose and practice it in the institution. During my internship program, I worked with Mabel’s creative organization. In the industry, in the first few months, operations were effective till the administration replaced the manager.

When the new management took charge, the atmosphere changed abruptly, and employees had several cases unsolved. This led to high turnover, which made the firm to be closed. At this time, I came to realize the value of dealing with problems before they escalate. A leader should ensure workers have a peaceful state of mind to enhance their involvement. Followers should practice finding a solution to any scenario to enable them to prevent the impacts that are associated with the situation.


In the college, there were students from different races around the world. As the student leader, I received reports concerning discrimination and harassment. I had to convene meetings occasionally with the students to teach ourselves the importance of one’s culture and the significance of respecting them. This made it possible for learners to adapt and accommodate others from different ethnicity. To create an effective and reliable team, a leader should promote the culture of adaptation amongst the people to ensure productive coexistence (Azim, Fan, Uddin, Jilani, & Begum, 2019). For instance, as the leader, I would restrain from using or referring to students by their cultural aspects. Students should ensure they respect other learners’ status so that they do not engage in acts that could make someone feel inferior.

To Develop Team Members

Good leaders can influence the potential of group members in an organization. In the creative industries, new ideas are formed frequently to enable the industry to meet the desires of the consumers. Advancement has led to competition in the industry, making it necessary to have better ways to cope with the rivalry. I would encourage collaboration with other cultural organizations to share ideas for enhanced creativity (Santoro, Bresciani, & Papa, 2020). This will enable participants to develop unique and quality techniques to enhance their creativity. Moreover, during discussions about matters that can add value to the performance, I will stimulate brainstorming and allow individual contribution.

In the future, as a leader, I would ensure I provide an interactive atmosphere to encourage innovation in the industry. I have good listening skills and patience; therefore, it will be easy to dedicate myself to the group to understand the needed improvement for better performance. I would promote diversity by hiring different people and creating a conducive environment for workers to facilitate their productivity.

In conclusion, the creative and cultural industry requires the development of leadership competencies. The changing environment and the need to keep up with creativity need skills to direct and guide a given group in one direction. Through transformational leadership, employees or individuals can easily adapt to new changes that suit the organization’s needs. Transformation makes it easier to have effective governance in an organization. Similarly, participatory guidance is also significant in boosting workers’ morale, therefore, enhancing the commitment of group members in the given task. Furthermore, using the transactional style promotes and inspires individuals to put more effort into the project. Therefore, good leaders are capable of eliminating challenges both in the present and in the future.


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