Another handful of Tips 31 – Innovation
Five of the best tips to encourage innovation
Innovation flourishes in organisations where it is encouraged, appreciated, and rewarded. It dies in organisations that are bureaucratic and critical of change and new ideas.
Management should foster a working climate where staff are encouraged to suggest new ideas.
Ways to promote innovation:
1. Remove barriers
Make rules flexible and remove old regulations. Restrictions and barriers stifle useful ideas.
Give staff a forum to propose new ideas and improvements.
2. Question and look for new sources of ideas
Disregard the obvious questions. Look deeper and don’t be afraid to rethink the basic fundamentals of your business, your services and your products.
Complacency can inhibit growth.
Think about the future needs of your customers, stakeholders and users needs.
Encourage staff to suggest improvements or new products.
Show appreciation of good ideas.
Public recognition and rewards can stimulate people to produce more ideas.
4. Connect and communicate
Good communication is essential for innovation to flourish. Aim to bring concepts, people and products together.
Ask workers and clients what they want or what they would like . Listen carefully to their ideas.
Avoid criticism or rejecting ideas without full consideration. Negativity discourages people from suggesting further ideas.
5. Commit and test
Set up systems to process, test and evaluate all new ideas as soon as possible. Follow up all practical ideas and let people who suggest them know the outcome.
“Innovation thrives on encouragement and dies with routine regulations and bureaucracy.”
Sources: “Time- Savers, Guidelines, checklists and golden rules”, Moss Associates Ltd, New Zealand, “Time Management Secrets”, Cengage Learning Asia and “Time-Savers”, McGraw-Hill Companies. Also available as an e-book from Amazon.com.