ANZ Business Leaders Still Not Using Technology As A Creative Tool: Adobe Study

lightbulb brainstorming creative idea abstract icon on business hand.

Adobe today released its 2020 results from the Adobe CQ (creativity quotient), an evaluation tool designed to measure enterprise creative aptitude and capability across teams and organisations. More than 2,500 enterprise leaders from across Asia Pacific (APAC) – including 578 leaders from Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) – took the online persona-based test to evaluate their creative leadership in 2020.

The baseline test examines five key areas where creativity impacts business success: culture, data, skills, technology and experiences. At the conclusion of the test, respondents are assigned an appropriate persona based on their results – Visionary, Leader, Assembler or Challenger.

“The challenges of 2020 brought to the fore the importance of creativity, collaboration, innovation and problem solving,” said Adobe Australia and New Zealand vice president Suzanne Steele. “Business leaders across Australia and New Zealand are doing a great job building the right culture and experience to drive creativity, however it is important we don’t stop there.

“We need to continue to prioritise the development of creative skills, explore ways to upskill teams and invest in new technology to facilitate creativity. Future business growth will require forward-thinking leaders who can embrace creativity to push boundaries and open new pathways to success,” said Steele.

Australian and New Zealand Results

The majority of ANZ leaders are performing well in creative leadership, with 60 per cent ranking as ‘Leaders’. However, there is still room for improvement with just 13 per cent of participants achieving the top ranking of ‘Visionaries’.

ANZ leaders are strongest in the ‘experience’ category, with 45 per cent excelling in leveraging creative skills and technology to deliver innovative and engaging experiences. Specifically, more than half (58 per cent) of ANZ enterprise leaders see creativity as a fundamental tool of innovation and evolution incorporating it into all elements of work.

“Fostering a creative culture is a strength of ANZ leaders, with 41 per cent excelling in this area. When asked when their team feels most creative, more than half (54 per cent) said when there is a problem to be solved. This means leaders in ANZ are providing their teams with an environment that celebrates change, and encourages a ‘fail fast’ attitude, allowing brands to challenge the status quo and unlock new endeavours,” said Steele.

One area for improvement is the use of technology as a creative tool. Compared to the rest of APAC, ANZ leaders trail behind in terms of data and technology. Less than a third (31 per cent) of ANZ leaders excel in data, and a similar number (33 per cent) excel in technology, compared to 35 per cent and 37 per cent respectively for APAC.

“The greatest area of opportunity for ANZ leaders is to better foster and leverage creative skills within their teams,” said Steele. “Less than one quarter (22 per cent) of ANZ leaders excelled in helping their teams develop creative skills such as critical thinking, problem solving and collaboration. We need to see greater focus on upskilling in these skills crucial to the future of work.”


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