Creative Breakfast Club

Being in the creative industries can often mean working either alone or in a small team. Although this can be liberating, it does also mean that it can be difficult to get the support we all need at times from our peers.

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A couple of years ago, two founders of small creative businesses (Matt Baxter and Jason Holland) decided to create an informal breakfast club – a place where people in positions of creative responsibility can talk freely about the joys and challenges of working in the creative industries.

Members of the “Creative Breakfast” club recently spoke to Design Week about why the meetings are so beneficial (behind login).

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Start your own breakfast club

Below we share the simple outline of how the breakfast club was started, in the hope that we might see other breakfast clubs being formed.

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1. Be Selective

Our breakfast club was started by two people (Matt Baxter and Jason Holland) who each invited one person along to the first breakfast. These two invited people then invited a person each themselves, who then invited a person each, bringing the numbers up to eight by breakfast three. This ensures the group is made up of people who probably all don't know each other already.

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2. Keep it Small

The temptation might be to invite all of your creative chums. Resist. Creative Breakfasts are by their nature small – any more than eight and you'll struggle to fit round a dinner table and hear everyone speak. Keep it small and you can get to know everyone and begin to understand their businesses and their challenges. And maybe even help them out.

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3. Variety is Good

Try to invite people who might have a slightly different professional role to you. A range of roles from across the creative industries will bring different experiences to the table and discussions. Our breakfast includes Creative Directors, Copywriters, Creative Advisors, Digital Leads, amongst other roles.

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4. Embrace Change

Due to changing work commitments or geographical moves people sometimes do leave. Although a shame this is a way to keep the group and the discussions fresh, with new ideas and approaches being brought to the table. Our club has already seen changes, and has spawned a new breakfast club in Stockholm and one starting soon in Brighton.

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5. Find a Home

All great meetings of minds need a great venue. Churchill had his war rooms. Tony and Gordon had Granita. The Rebel Alliance had the moon of Yavin. You'll need one too. Choose somewhere handy for all attendees (as far as is practical), somewhere that does great breakfast, and somewhere you can hear each other speak. It's all about the chat, after all. And the eggs.

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6. Up and at'em

These gatherings are attended by creative business owners: busy people with businesses to run. An 8am start, an hour of chatting and eating and then off to work usually works for everyone. It also avoids the potential pitfalls of meeting up in after work for a 'quick drink' (one of those pitfalls being a sore head the next morning).

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7. Pass it on

If one of you can't make the arranged Creative Breakfast – the looming presentation is a frequent reason to bail – nominate a super-sub. Someone who you like, trust and think will contribute something to the conversation in your absence.

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