500 Days of Summer. Inception. This is the End. The Dark Knight Returns. Don Jon. What do all of these films have in common? Joseph Gordon Levitt. From childhood star to leading actor to writer and director, Levitt has built an impressive Hollywood resumé. What most people don’t realize, is that he is also an entrepreneur.
His endeavor, HitRecord, started as a site for artists and musicians to post their art, compositions, raps and more. It was meant to be a site to inspire, to share, to find commonness, and to critique. But as the site evolved, something happened. These artists and musicians actually started working together to make more art. Levitt and his brother Daniel, who helped to found HitRecord, realized that they were on to something.
The site was sparking these individuals, many of who had unique skill sets, to collaborate to create animations, short films, soundtracks, short stories, the list goes on. HitRecord evolved into a platform that induced creativity and collaboration. It is now an online community that works together as a production company.
Speaking at SuiteConnect at Oracle OpenWorld 2017, Levitt detailed the phenomenon of HitRecord, how it has changed how artists and musicians collaborate, and how it is making a real impact in the lives of the people that create the content (HitRecord has paid over $2.5 million to its content producers).
Levitt shared this story to provide some advice for the crowd. Technology companies should encourage their people to be creative, together. Here are a few key takeaways from Levitt’s talk:
See things through to the end. You might start on one path with a company or product, and end up in a completely different place than you intended. Just because the end result is not what you envisioned doesn’t mean it isn’t successful.
Creativity is invaluable. Perspective, skill and imagination are all unique to the individual. Cherish each person’s creativity, and figure out how to maximize that to drive business value.
One is less than many. One person can write an incredible script. But having two or even three writers work on it can take the script to another level.
Collaboration is key. Enabling people and teams in different functions to work together-either through technology, communication platforms, or in-person office configurations-is essential to ensuring the highest possible outcome/result for a project.
Be open-minded to creative ideas. No great idea starts as a great idea. Evaluate the plan, bring in second opinions, and work closely with the creative team to get a full picture… visualize the potential.