Finding ways to accelerate innovation is on the top of everyone’s mind. in fact, 84% of managers think that innovation is important to growth, but only 6% are satisfied with their organization’s innovation performance. Does this sound right for your company?
You’ve probably already tried (or at least been thinking about) some ways to improve and accelerate innovation at your organization. Perhaps you implemented an idea wiki, crowdsourcing software, or an open concept office redesign. You have probably mapped your customer journey, studied customer insights, and conducted endless discovery sessions.
And still you can’t make headway with innovation.
Perhaps there is something missing. Something simple.
Perhaps what you need to try is communication.
Why is communication crucial for successful innovation?
Author Steven Johnson credits coffee houses with spurring The Enlightenment. In part because of the stimulation of caffeine, but mostly because of the fluid networks that they created. People and ideas were able to co-mingle, which is a key part of innovation acceleration. And communication within a company is a great means for spreading and juxtaposing ideas for divergent thinking.
But, communication can also help with convergent thinking—providing rules, structure, and constraints that actually spur innovative thought. Tony-award winning lyricist Steven Sondheim said, “If you have limitations and boundaries, you can leap about. If you tell me to write a love song tonight, I’d have a lot of trouble. But if you tell me to write a love song about a girl with a red dress who goes into a bar and is on her fifth martini and is falling off her chair, that’s a lot easier and it makes me free to say anything I want.’’
By helping employees, leaders, and innovation teams tap into new ways of communicating, you can supercharge your innovation activities and start to see some real return on your investments.