Innovation can be defined as ‘renewing, changing or creating more effective processes, products or ways of doing things’. In a business context this can refer to implementing new ideas, improving existing services or creating dynamic products. Innovation is not the responsibility of one person in a workplace; it is something that all team members must be aware of and working towards.
Create a culture for innovation If organizational culture does not embrace innovation, there is a high probability that the organisation can stagnate in the market. Company culture must be one which embraces the suggestion of new ideas, irrespective of their feasibility.
Listen to feedback Some of the best ideas are often comes from the feedback of those most crucial to your organisation – your customers. Although the process of listening to customers seems very simple, it can often get lost in larger more hierarchical organisations. This knowledge is some of the most valuable that a company can obtain in order to make future strategic decisions.
Failure is the foundation of innovation James Joyceonce said ‘mistakes are the portals of discovery’, and this has much relevance in the context of innovation. One of the keys of innovation is to embrace failure; it is after failure that approaches and results can be analyzed and improved on.
Plan your approach It is not good enough to say, ‘okay, let’s innovate’ – a clear plan and strategy must be in mind, plan out which areas of your business need attention. When planning your approach, specific metrics must also be put in place in order to measure and track your efforts.
In summary, it’s best to integrate a plan into current organizational missions or values so that the end product does not stray dramatically from the path in which the company has planned to take. Planning ensures that objectives are clear from the beginning, and helps in the evaluation process after the implementation.