I am one of those people at the company that thinks swiftly, unconventionally and beyond the Xs and Os of the business model. I know that sounds like a football coach. In a way, it is very similar. I like to develop game plans that are unique to the business and create something completely fresh and new to the customer. When I see emerging platforms, apps, digital tools and creative ways to accomplish a goal, my eyes light up and my hearts beats faster.
If You Want To Be Innovative – Just Do It
Nike says it better than anyone else. Just Do It. That’s where you can start. Activate a group of bright minds and let them make some magic. However, there should probably be some thought about how you manage that process. Employees that fuel innovation are highly creative people, typically they require a little more “creative space to go play in.” Here’s my suggestion: give it to them and watch them flourish. You’ll be amazed at what turns up. If you’re afraid of losing control, you may rethink if you want to be innovative or not. But don’t give up, there is not a time sequence or algorithmic formula that equals innovation. Sometimes it just hits the brain by accident. Other times innovation is discovered through testing, experimenting and monitoring what other companies are doing.
Innovation Management is about more than just planning new products, services, brand extensions, or technology inventions. It’s about imagining, mobilizing, and competing in new ways.
– Idris Mootee, author: Design Thinking for Strategic Innovation
The Keys To The Kingdom
No, it doesn’t mean to give those employees free reign over the company, budget and endless resources. It does mean providing them thinking space and room, experiment and make mistakes. Do you really want to be innovative or not? If you are afraid of losing control by letting some of your staff be renegades, here’s a suggestion. Gather all of the brightest, most creative minds in the company, put them in one department and give it an official name like “New Product Development.” This formalizes their work and also lets you, their manager wrap a strategy and benchmarks around their discoveries. In my career, I have seen this done before. In fact, Turner Broadcasting does a magnificent job of it.
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Sources: Idris Mootee, author: Design Thinking for Strategic Innovation
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