Creating an innovative culture that sparks useful ideas

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Research has shown that long term organisational success depends on developing, testing and implementing new ideas- not being satisfied with the status quo. The increasing pace of change resulting from the digital age is putting more pressure on the need for ideas that lead to new products and services as well as ideas that improve the way we work.

The easiest way to get ideas to improve your business is from your employees. They understand your business and want you to succeed, so why don’t most organisations do this well?

There are three key reasons:

– Established organisations are focused on execution. Managers want their people to focus on what needs to be done soon rather than think about the future.
– Many managers believe that ideas from lower level staff are not useful, hence it’s a waste of time to ask for and consider them.
– There isn’t a simple process to capture and rate ideas from employees.
An innovative culture- what is it?

The most successful organisations have leaders who understand the value of innovation and address the above issues They encourage an innovative culture by offering positive employee experiences which results in high employee engagement The best people stay and there is a constant flow of ideas that improve the business.

Innovative cultures offer jobs that promote teamwork and offer opportunities to make a contribution so talented people can learn and progress.

When a culture is innovative, people are honest and open, encouraged to share ideas and able to explore initiatives without fear of failure. There is recognition that failing to try anything new is often the biggest risk.

People feel more empowered and rewarded when they know that they will receive credit for ideas they suggest, their ideas will be seriously considered for testing or implementation, and rewards are both transparent and timely.

For anyone thinking that innovation is a fad, 2018 will mark adoption of the world’s first global standard for innovation processes.

We all have choices about how much thought and time we put into something. When our ideas and suggestions are not adequately considered those of us on the left of this chart just seek to contribute elsewhere. Insync research has shown that 51% of people rate lack of job enrichment as the most important reason they leave their job.

More and more people want to work in an innovative culture where work has meaning, brands have genuine value and new thinking leads to useful ideas being implemented. Purpose and passion are now the lifeblood of a successful organisation. Organisations with innovative cultures embracing new thinking are the most likely to succeed.

Encouraging an innovative culture

Leading tech companies have innovative cultures. However many more established organisations have hierarchical structures that make it difficult to adapt to change. Therefore they are vulnerable to disruption.

To avoid disruption and encourage an innovative culture there must be leadership from the top with innovation as a key strategic focus. There needs to be a process for encouraging useful ideas that’s well understood.

Some organisations have established innovation management positions that are tasked with promoting and supporting innovation across the organisation.

Other suggestions to encourage an innovative culture are: including ideas from employees or innovation on committee agendas, an award for innovation, investing in an idea capture tool that gives people at all levels a voice in contributing ideas, and ensuring leaders are well trained so they are receptive to suggestions and ideas from their employees.

Innovation should involve all people in an organisation, not just a select few.

IdeaSpies Enterprise is a new idea capture tool that’s designed to turn the tide in your favour… naturally.

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