Want to be accurate and creative? Pick your writing utensil wisely

Many office workers use whiteboards often, whether it's to jot down notes in an important meeting or give a presentation. As you stand in the front of the boardroom, you probably scan the area for a dry-erase marker. During these tense moments before your presentation begins, do you ever consider the color of the marker you ultimately choose? If not, you should. According to a study published in the journal Science, certain colors can help you be more accurate or creative as you complete a task - and that can work to your advantage.

Red vs. blue: A color study
The study compared the effects of using a red or blue utensil, and how these tools influenced productivity. Researchers discovered a correlation between writing in red ink and accuracy, and between blue ink and creativity. In both cases, physically writing (rather than typing) was necessary to get the results.

Designing a Web layout or giving a presentation: These things may require an extra boost of creativity and accuracy.
Designing a Web layout or giving a presentation: These things may require an extra boost of creativity and accuracy.

When to use each color
Let's be honest: Having a way to boost your creativity and accuracy is highly beneficial, and you probably wish you could have both all day at work. It would be like Iron Man getting a suit upgrade! However, you don't want to constantly switch markers during a meeting or presentation, so you may have to stick to just one (though not on all occasions). With that limitation in mind, here are some instances in which a specific color would come in handy:

Pitching a new idea: If you're presenting in front of a group of investors or influential people at your job, you want accuracy on your side. You might be bold, but the people holding the money want to make sure your new idea is worth an investment. Being accurate with your predicted numbers will help you win them over.

Brainstorming solutions: Have a problem at work that needs solving (when don't we)? Pick up a blue marker and get creative! In many instances, creativity is at the heart of problem solving.

Creating a layout: New websites, magazine covers, newspapers etc., all have a layout. As you design one, use blue to get those creative juices flowing. When it's time to flesh out your design more fully, you'll grab other colors as well.

Red and blue ink can affect how you work.
Red and blue ink can affect how you work.

Planning strategies: Whether you're working on a new marketing campaign or coming up with a sales strategy, you may spend time mapping out a plan for the week, month or year on your whiteboard. This is one of those times when both accuracy and creativity come in handy, so use both blue and red. It doesn't matter what words you specifically sketch out in red or blue, as long as your final plan has both.

Whiteboards are essential tools at work, and the color markers you use can be even more beneficial. Use red and blue strategically to get the most out of your dry erase board.

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