How best can innovation be defined? Fifteen experts were asked, and an ultimate definition was ‘executing an idea which addresses a specific challenge and achieves value for both the company and customer’. (Skillicorn, 2019)
At some stage, everyone in every organisation has heard that they need to be more innovative. Processes are set up (i.e. innovation application), time is set within the day (i.e. innovation meetings), bodies are formed (i.e. an innovation steering group) and a traditional, organisational-structured mentality is applied to something that is probably best left to flow as opposed to being overly orchestrated. Innovation is best as a part of something rather than an addition to it, as part of people’s work and being in ‘their flow.’ ‘Flow with whatever may happen and let your mind be free. Stay centered by accepting whatever you are doing. This is the ultimate.’ Zhuangzi Flow means being in the zone. Athletes say when they are in flow, time stands still; they are fully immersed, highly energised, and enjoying the process. How can organisations and their employees develop a state of flow? The factors that contribute to an organisation’s innovation potential are:
Setting the right conditions: what is most suitable for your organisation? (read more here)
Identifying areas of tactical focus.
Encouraging employees to suggest ideas then select and implement the most relevant.
What is the broader dream and how can this be broken into parts?
Graduate vendors to partners based on unique capabilities that contribute to realising your dreams?
A word of caution; be mindful of both fads and vendors, avoid being overly led or dependent on them.