Keys to Strategic and Realistic Innovation 

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In a world wherein change is constant, products and services are continuously improved every single year. Amidst the pandemic, how does your organization keep up with the current competition? Does your organization have the right strategies, tools and resources? Does your organization have what it takes to keep your competitive edge alive in the ever-changing market conditions?

On today’s podcast episode, we interview Elvin Turner who is the author of Be Less Zombie: How Great Organizations Create Dynamic Innovation, Fearless Leadership and Passionate People. Today’s topic is locked-in on strategic and realistic methodologies on innovation–an important and essential characteristic of many successful organizations who are making a mark in this fast-paced world.

Significance of Innovation

Innovation is one of the many characteristics that a successful organization must possess.  In order to implement sound innovation,  a leader must first choose innovation as a top priority. Secondly, the organization must set strategies that are aligned towards key business drivers. Lastly, great innovative leaders are good stewards of today and tomorrow, leaning into uncomfortable questions of  tomorrow that must be answered today.

Your Team is the Product

Encouraging your team to think of themselves as a product is one of the key and crucial paths towards innovation. As  market conditions change, a product is continually  upgraded in order to stay relevant.  If team members think of the team as a product, they can self-calibrate as the operation changes, shifts, and moves. Such focus ensures that the work getting done leads to the highest possible performance.

Brainstorming is not Innovation

There is a false impression made inside organizations that innovation is just brainstorming. Coming up with ideas is just one piece of the puzzle.There are two concerns that needed to be answered during the process of brainstorming in order to incorporate innovation. 

1) Which issues should the organization solve? 

This involves the formulation of questions and current issues for which the  organization needs immediate resolution or improvement. Formulating this shortlist sets the team up for deeper thinking.

2) Asking better questions than their competition. 

From the problems shortlisted above, an organization should  train  team members to ask better questions than the  prevailing competition. The best ideas come from a better-framed question. Taking people through this process will eventually result in questions the prevailing competition has not even considered.

Strategic and Realistic Innovation

 Below is a “strategic and realistic” guide towards creating a culture of innovation. 

1) Strategic View – This is required right from the start. How much innovation is needed? What kinds of innovation? How can future needs be aligned with existing jobs? What new or redesigned jobs are needed? ? What are our areas of focus? ? What is the workload that needs to be reduced or outsourced?

2) Resources – This is the realistic side of innovation. How much money, talent and time is needed for each innovation project? An understanding of an organization’s resources as being finite is the best way to manage the resources used for innovation.

Who is Elvin Turner?

Elvin Turner is a best-selling author, innovation advisor and associate professor at several business schools. He is also an award-winning leadership development programme designer.

He is a regular speaker at conferences and corporate events and a guest on podcasts covering the topics of innovation, strategy, change and leadership.

Elvin has coached and facilitated hundreds of strategy, innovation and leadership programmes around the world for companies including Universal, IBM, Telefonica, Cisco, Santander, Pernod Ricard and Accenture.

To learn more about Strategic and Realistic Innovation download this episode now.

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