To compete in the tech world today, businesses must embrace creativity and innovation at every level. Tech businesses often emphasize the importance of employees possessing the right knowledge and experience, which matters. But to really set your work apart in the industry, creativity and innovation should be the business of everyone in your organization, from the highest senior executive to the lowest employee on the organizational chart. Making creativity a priority business value will both help you stay competitive and fulfill your mission in society.
Recently our team attended workshops on “Thinking Creatively” and “Demonstrating How to Develop Process, Products, and Services.” The workshops gave us useful tools for implementing skills we already knew were important.
Talking about the need for creativity is one thing, but learning how to put those values into practice can be a bit harder. These workshops helped us bridge the gap. We identified better strategies to actively seek out and hire people with diverse backgrounds and thinking styles. We explored steps to effectively manage resistance to novel or experimental proposals.
The influence of new technologies is hard to predict. That means many of the opportunities presented to us require our team to evaluate the opportunity knowing there are many unknowns. We have to try to maintain the organization’s competitive edge by embracing breakthrough solutions and disciplined risks.
To do this well, we have to regularly pull our team aside for a good discussion and guidance…
So, we asked our workshop facilitator to weigh in and offer some guidance in coming up with discussion questions useful in this era of perpetual innovation. These questions can be applied to any leadership team’s “let’s think about things” type of discussion.
- How have our personal lives changed because of new technology? What changes do we expect are coming right around the corner?
- How have our work habits changed because of new technology? What changes do we think are coming soon?
- What kinds of jobs are in danger of being lost or replaced by technological innovations?
- How does the “always on” technological reality endanger work-life balance issues?
- What do our customers need from us now, and what will they need from us in years to come, that technological innovation might help us deliver in a better way? Where and how do we need to innovate by adapting new technology?
- So, if this is truly a perpetually innovating age, especially with technology innovation, is our company innovative enough? Are we an “early adopter” company? An early majority or a late majority company? A “laggard” company? Why do you put us in the category you put us in?
Your team can probably come up with similar questions that are good for driving your creativity discussions. We suspect most businesses would benefit from having talks like this on a regular basis.
What questions would you use for your discussion?