Innovation is the only key to unlock development. Its abstraction is about the improvement or amelioration of any process. When introduced into a system, it does not in any way reduce the system; corporate innovations increase the chances of a breakthrough. In a simple term, people innovate for the purpose of improving lives or systems.
Despite how congenial innovation sounds, it doesn’t come by chance. People work to make it happen. Corporate innovations demand the thoughtful, creative and potent use of ideas to manifest. Often times, innovation is a reflection of people’s discomfort and perseverance. And to a very large extent, the journey to innovation in any corporate environment must be led.
Here are four ways leaders can unlock corporate innovation -
Find and enlist the innovators in your team
Innovators are in every team, including yours. They are those members that provide suggestions and how the team can go around obstacles. Corporate innovators are disturbed by irregular processes or systems. They challenge the status quo; ask direct questions about processes all in a bid to find ways of improving them. It is the duty of every leader, therefore, to identify more of these ones and enlist them in their teams. Beyond bringing them into the team, the leader must also be open to receive ideas, opinions and innovation plans from them. Innovators are motivated to do more creative things when they consider themselves useful in your team.
Naturally, when people know they are safe, they can be relaxed to think beyond the box. In other words, innovation is promoted in a safe and secure environment, not a hostile workplace. Yes, safety sure plays a very major role. Safety here refers not only to physical safety; it also refers to the emotional and financial safety as well as job security. Leaders owe it to their employees and team members to create these safe atmospheres for them. It is the basis of these safe environments that leaders can expect their team to be creative and innovate.
Don’t be afraid to disrupt the old structure
As mentioned earlier, corporate innovations are not always affiliated with comforts. In most cases, it disrupts the usual ways of doing things; generate complaints and dissatisfactions in the process. Leaders who seek to bring innovation shouldn’t shy away from these changes. They should be willing and confident to challenge current structures, ask questions and implement changes where necessary. While doing this, ensure your team see the need for the changes and are on your side.
When innovators in your team come up with brilliant ideas and suggestions that ensure improvement, leaders are expected to approve them. Beyond the approval, however, leaders are also expected to give their moral and financial support. Let the adequate amount of fund be approved to sponsor credible and promising innovative idea. Even after the funds have been approved, leaders shouldn’t forget to stop asking after the initiatives and trying to make suggestions.
The heartbeat of every corporate system is its ability to regularly improve, and the process entails innovation plans. The lack of corporate innovation is a major cause of bankruptcy and business failures. There is always a way out of difficult situations if there are ways of getting into them. That’s where innovation counts, that’s why improving your system is the most significant progress you should look out for.