Does Your CEO Foster Innovation Within Your Organization?

Does Your CEO Foster Innovation Within Your Organization?

Much has been written about creativity in individuals and formal processes to foster innovation in companies.

Convert problems to ideas: The stimulus for new ideas comes from being forced to focus on solving a problem. In almost every case, there are better ways to solve, or avoid, a problem. See problems as needing a new approach, not just something to power through using common wisdom.
1. Create an innovation system: Creativity exists in all organizations and in all individuals, but it is rarely channeled and deliberate. Make innovation intentional. Set up a time and set of steps to think about the nature of problems, the inputs and processes commonly used to solve them and the satisfaction of the outcomes. Where are alternatives possible?
2.  Make your sense of pain or urgency drive innovation: New ideas may be spontaneous but translating them into actionable processes or products requires emotional attachment. You have to see excitement or promise in new ideas to move them from thought to action.
3.  Hang out with other creative people and/or people who have the same problems you face: The same thinking yields the same results. Innovation is most fertile when several disciplines come together. Make it a point to get to know other business professionals who work in other industries or disciplines and ask how they would solve a common problem.
4.  Define what is most important:  Examples include recruiting, retention, short and/or long term revenue growth, new products or services.
5.  Recognize how the organization going to facilitate an Innovation Program:  Formal classes, outside speakers, a Management Acclimatization® session, collaboration of employees in a team concept are a few suggestions.
Make innovation a deliberate part of your business strategy. Considering that professional services has about a three year life (at least that was conventional wisdom a few years ago), you need to replace or refresh a third of your services every year. Write down a few problems you'd like to solve or services you'd like to introduce. Introduce yourself to a steady stream of new prospects to discuss these ideas and help them innovate as well.

Month one of 2013 is about to begin.  Are you prepared to do your part to grow yourself, grow your company and help your peers grow as well?  As always, here is my wish that you have a tremendous week.  If you feel Client Growth Consultants can help, please call or write and we will respond immediately!  Your comments and/or suggestions are always welcome.

George F. Mancuso, CEO, CPC
Client Growth Consultants, Inc.
Grinnell, Iowa