Why most companies are failing to unlock innovation…

So have you heard? There’s an ‘Innovation Boom’ going on.  Well certainly a boom in aspiration.

If we say we’re focusing on innovation (or make it someone’s responsibility) it’s going to happen right?

For most organisations it is just not happening for the following reasons:

Lack of structure and process.

Many feel that innovation is about unlocking technology and creative people solving problems and sure, it can be, but the consistent performers have tight and effective organisational processes to guide and enhance ideas to realisation.

Innovation as a task rather than a culture.

When innovation becomes something we do rather than the way we act, it is embedded in our DNA. Innovation should not be a training program or annual team session, it has to come to life in everything we do, every day.

Getting the right people together and getting them to do the right things (team organisation).

Effective innovation teams bring together a mix of different personalities – creative thinkers, problem solvers, conservative and protective mindsets, strong communicators, salespeople, and more. Getting these different mindsets to work together effectively and positively is the first step in delivering innovation outcomes.

Fear of failure and the burden of proof.

While many executive teams ‘support’ innovation, the truth is that there still exists an enduring fear of failure – and the subsequent reliance on evidence and assurance before any action is taken. Too often we hear stories from well-meaning team members taking new ideas to a leadership team, and quickly being shot down for not having evidence it will pay off.

We need to shift mindset through all levels of the organisation to promote an adventurous and curious mindset.