Headlines: July 22nd, 2005

Almost two thirds of public sector workers would like the chance to be more creative at work but almost as many believe their bosses are unaware of their creative talents and a new report is warning public sector employers to take note that three-quarters of those surveyed felt career fulfillment was more important than financial reward.The survey was undertaken by SWNA on behalf of the sector skills council for the creative and cultural industries. The study also shows that when they were children people now working for public bodies were more likely to dream about being a doctor, a nurse or a teacher than a footballer or a movie star. For 35 per cent of them those dream careers changed when they grew up, although teaching remained a firm favourite with public sector workers both in childhood and later in life.

Although more than half of workers in public services described their childhood dream careers as creative, 46 per cent describe the jobs they do today as ‘not at all creative’ and a further 44 per cent says their work is only ‘slightly creative’.

Tom Bewick, chief executive of Creative and Cultural Skills – the skills council – said it was clear that creativity was not restricted to those who working directly in the creative sector. “Teaching is a prime example of this. Bearing in mind the creativity teachers demonstrate every day in the classroom it’s no surprise that teaching is such a popular dream career for children and adults alike,” he said. He added that teachers were well positioned to develop the creative talent of their pupils and to point them in the right direction for their future careers.

The skills council is to introduce a new advice line and web support service called Creative Choices, which will ultimately be a consumer intelligence portal offering information on how to get into the creative and cultural industries, what types of jobs are available and details of relevant training.

The SWNA study shows that the top five dream jobs for public sector workers when they were children were doctor/nurse, teacher, vet, actor/movie star and footballer. As adults they list the top dream posts as writer, teacher, landscape gardener, paramedic and photographer.

More than half of the staff surveyed did not think the education they received at school had any relevance to the job they now did in the public sector. Of the 44 per cent of public sector respondents who have a degree, 28 per cent say that it was irrelevant or only vaguely relevant to their current occupation.