Proven Methods to Create a Culture of Innovation

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Many companies profess to be innovative, but innovation does not come from beanbags and pool tables, rather it comes from having a culture of restlessness, of ensuring your people have the right mindset for challenge and change. 

But how do you go about creating a culture like this in the first place? 

It starts at the top. By showing your team that you’re open to new thinking, even better, that you expect, leaders create a safe space for their employees to innovate. As your employees start to understand and commit to your vision for your business, this new way of doing business will start to inform their every decision and innovation will become the norm, as opposed to the unusual. 

 As Lou Gerstner, CEO at IBM, said: “Vision, strategy, marketing, financial management – any management system, in fact – can set you on the right path and carry you for a while. But no enterprise–whether in business, government, education, health care, or any area of human endeavor–will succeed over the long haul if those elements aren’t part of its DNA.” 

 Don’t fall into the trap of focusing only on processes and procedures, analytics and admin, rather be deliberate about encouraging creative thinking and take a look at some of these proven methods to create a culture of innovation.

Have a vision

President John F. Kennedy’s declaration that they would go to the moon might have motivated a nation to unprecedented levels of innovation, but it’s important to make sure that your vision is realistic, bring it down to measurable goals that will stimulate action and drive the innovation necessary to achieve those objectives.

Be open

It seems obvious, but sometimes it helps to be reminded that the act of simply being open and listening to what your team members have to say can often lead to tremendous insights that result in new ideas and innovations. Ideas don’t always come from experts.

Identify strengths

Rather than giving projects to whoever is free, take the time to get to know your staff and identify their strengths. This will enable you to to allocate work to the “right” people, ensuring the challenge is a good match for their skills, resources and most importantly, mindset.

Focus

Many companies are fortunate to have innovative staff, full of creative ideas, but unless you’re able to identify which ideas are worth running with, you might soon find yourself bogged down by too many ideas and not enough action. Be clear about the areas you want to explore and make sure your team understands your priorities.

Fail forwards

Let your team fail. If you expect a 100% success rate on every project, they’re unlikely to take the risks necessary for innovation. If they feel safe to fail, they will feel confident to experiment and won’t play it too safe. After all, many of mankind’s greatest advancements were the unintended results of accidents.

Go flat

Big businesses are often known for their reporting lines. While this can help alleviate demands on upper management, it can be a roadblock for innovation.  A flat management structure does away with the long approval processes and broken down lines of communication that can see new ideas squashed before they even reach the decision makers.

Collaborate

Just as you can’t do everything yourself, your company might not have all the necessary skills on board to make your ideas a reality. Advances in information technology, for instance, are hard to keep up with, which is why it might pay to look beyond the confines of your organisation for other innovative thinkers that can help you achieve your vision.

Change for tomorrow

If you’re looking to innovate the way you manage your assets, then contact AssetFinda to find out more about our revolutionary asset management system. Our innovative GIS technology lets you see the future with precision. It easily overlays historical and real-time data so you can instantly see vital trends, patterns and correlations between different assets and asset classes, and make the decisions necessary to keep your business moving forward.

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