Innovation is one thing…the Quality of Innovation is another

So much is happening now in this world with the pandemic and protests. We’ve needed to respond to an immediate health crisis as people quarantined and began working virtually.  Now we are opening to a new level of social change. Finding novel ways to work and continue to collaborate, solve problems and innovate on teams has been challenging to say the least. The question is what will be the long-lasting impact of these new ideas for our products, services or processes?  How do you know you are getting the best out of a new idea or approach?  Are they as creative as they can possibly be?

The best answer is that we won’t know. Innovation and creativity IS all about taking risks, but then constantly measuring and modifying. And it is complex. Finding the right keys and establishing a growth mindset environment where creative thinking can flourish demands the right culture. Understanding the answers to these critical questions is a start:

Questions

  • Are today’s solutions assuring we can face tomorrow’s challenges?
  • Are we innovating out of fear or inspiration?
  • How do these solutions help us bond with our internal or external customers more significantly… for the short and long-term?
  • Are we harnessing the various types of innovation available? Does our culture support Incremental, disruptive, radical or sustainable innovation? This article explains the differences.

With the answers to these questions, do we also have the diverse representation (gender, race, cultural etc) on our teams and are we tapping into their cognitive diversity?  The walk-around below is another way to get at diverse thinking and how we might look at innovation.  The yellow quadrant innovation is more obvious, but what about the other quadrants?  How can we creatively adapt our innovations with key stakeholders, or how we look at research and financials as well as streamline the processes in place?ROI

Key Takeaway:  Thinking about our culture and how we innovate effectively is another important aspect to creating an environment that is always looking for new and better solutions.  And perhaps now is the time to think about Social Innovation as we look to push our thinking further to create a society and world that strengthens our connections. At its best…. products, service and social innovation should be seamless, but this kind of thinking doesn’t happen easily. The best of organizational dynamics needs highly facilitated efforts to create the experiential and break-through thinking that will drive our future.

Tell us your story…We’d like to hear from you on what your companies are doing to allow for innovation and address the social issues of our time. Email me or click here to share more in the comments section on our Top Tips page. Others may learn from your story and what you share. To see a list of all the Top Tips that have been published, please see the complete blog.

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