Remember the last time your team challenged the status quo? Learned something together? Gave each other some feedback? Appreciated the strengths in their contributions? Made some mistakes while experimenting? If you cant remember, or if it was too long time back, you might have a culture that is not yet fertile for innovation.
Teams and organizations spend resources on innovation, with the good intention of growing their quality or clientele, or saving cost or growing revenue, or establishing a unique market advantage. The investments come in many forms including external consultant help, processes, tools, trainings, projects and thematic journeys. How much of these deliver returns? How many of your staff is with you in this journey? Are you ready yourself?
Like a pot with holes cannot hold water for long time, a culture that is hostile cannot produce innovation. Such cultures will work hard to maintain status quo or worse still decline, still pretend as if business is as usual.
A leader who knows himself clearly, communicates from a place of authenticity, knows how to give and receive feedback, appreciate the goodness in every situation and inspire by role modeling is ready for innovation. A manager, who is committed to the client’s world, challenges the status quo, asks great questions and stretches her team, is fit to innovate. A team that understands the mission of the organization in alignment with their personal purpose is motivated to innovate. A team who is in touch with their values are looking for ways to innovate. A culture that allows open communication, rewards contributions, acknowledges the risk-taking attitude and creates opportunities for learning is ready for innovation.
Without a positive and supporting culture, there is no innovation. Invest in the culture and then innovation is a natural outcome!