To unleash innovation potential and create opportunities for success, leaders need an effective set of skills and tools, a strategic & systemic approach, & a culture of support and continuous learning
Through our work on innovation projects with private, public and not-for-profit organizations, we’ve seen how hard it is to drive sustainable innovation. Leaders are challenged by the slow pace of change and teams struggle to gain traction on new kinds of projects. People may be afraid of failure, uncomfortable with ambiguity, incentivized for old behaviours, focused on the wrong problem, or working in isolation. Often, alignment with senior leadership gets lost along the way.
These common issues cause innovation efforts to underperform. Great ideas are not discovered, implemented, adopted or learned from to create positive results. To be successful, leaders and teams can’t make a jump into a new way of working. They must build a culture of continuous experimentation and be supported with the right tools and resources to navigate the challenges that arise along the way.
We believe that the way to building an innovative organization is by building and scaling innovation teams. Innovation teams succeed when they are enabled and supported by leadership; cross-functional and connected to the rest of the organization and its customers; skilled in innovation design methods; and driven by the value of continuous learning above all else.
Teams are also the means of scaling this approach out to the organization, as one team grows and spawns others. This process of team building and scaling unfolds over time until “innovation is just how things are done around here”.
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