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10 Ideas To Move Innovation Forward

10 Ideas To Move Innovation Forward | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by -= Bruce Berrien =- Through a lot of conversations on social networks, face-to-face opportunities, and reflection, I have been thinking about some of the t...

Via Tom D'Amico (@TDOttawa)
Synergetic Management's insight:

This article is about fostering innovation and an innovation culture in education, but we can extrapolate many of its good points to help us foster an innovation and improvement culture in business.

Admittedly, it is a bit disjointed and reads a bit like a shotgun-blast recipe for creating and changing a culture into one that is more innovation friendly. However, I believe the author has got some interesting points to make that may be of use to you. Remember, we are all at different points in this journey, and you never know when you might pick up something that can provide you with a bit of an aha or stepping stone moving forward.

This is not a fully descriptive article in any way shape or form, but it may have some nuggets of wisdom for you. I share it with you wish you the best on your journey towards creating an innovative culture and one that fosters performance improvement.

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Carl Heine's curator insight, June 11, 2013 10:46 AM

If only a few of these are needed to get the ball rolling, perfect...

Synergetic Management's comment, June 25, 2013 5:51 PM
Carl, I agree that starting is good, but may I suggest that ARRIVING is better. Too many articles about creativity, problem solving, or innovation are about starting, as if that was all that was needed. It is not - necessary, but not sufficient you might say. Too many attempts at innovation start well, but fail to deliver - I have seen this time and again. I fully advocate the need for a COMPLETE PROCESS that is required to be truly innovative.
Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement
Your inspired source for articles and ideas related to business improvement, coaching, and innovation. Our goal is to help you get more from your existing staff and equipment - more profits, more business, more employee engagement, more output, and higher quality. If you like what you see, visit us at http://www.synergeticmanagement.com or call us at 416-873-8671 today. At Synergetic Management, we help you strengthen your current operations using proven improvement processes, effective business coaching, and great innovation processes. We enable owners, directors, and managers to turn their staff into stars and position their organizations to overtake the competition and become the dominant players.
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Bees using scavenged plastic to build hives

Bees using scavenged plastic to build hives | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
Bees using scavenged plastic to build hives
Synergetic Management's insight:

LOL! 

While so many people are so worried about "going organic", Mother Nature is simply adapting to the world around her! 

 

Now, organic is great (for some things - I admit to being skeptical on the need for "organic" shampoo); I really like organic apples. 

 

But what is fascinating here is that these bees are TRYING SOMETHING *RADICALLY* DIFFERENT. Whether or not it will work in the long run is a great question, but they are trying! 

 

So, when was the last time YOU tried something that was (intelligently) RADICALLY different? :-)

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Teresa Amabile and Daniel Goleman: How managers can support creativity at work

What can a manager do to optimize team creativity? And what do they do commonly that squelches it? Daniel Goleman spoke with Harvard's Teresa Amabile for his...


Via Marci Segal, MS
Synergetic Management's insight:

The importance of WINS -- underestimate these at your peril.

 

This has TWO big implications:

 

1) people undertaking new roles and new tasks need some "quick wins" to build confidence and get their confidence into gear. This is often overlooked by managers who prefer "baptism by fire", then wonder why their people are so "burnt-out". Corny, but true.

 

HOW CAN I USE THIS? Ensure anyone under your wing that is starting new in the company, new roles, or new projects / assignments gets a chance to get a few quick wins under their belt. This even may need to be orchestrated on their behalf, but please never make it phony.
(E.g. ensure those who will be called will pay more-than-usual attention to the request for assistance that will come...)

 

2) everyone can use this principle at any time, but it works best when applied to MEANINGFUL work. Sorting out one's desk drawers vs. fixing a long-standing issue with a major customer will generate quite different levels of "feel good" endorphins (or whatever gets generated), hence quite different amounts of lift.

 

HOW CAN I USE THIS? The key here is in doing MEANINGFUL work -- this is one of the 4 keys to powerful intrinsic motivation. This is why the modern tendency keeping everyone so busy is a trap, as meaningful work often takes more time and energy than simply doing busy work.

 

(Hint to see if it is meaningful:
Is it being measured?
Does it contribute to the organizations results, i.e. the bottom line?
2 Yes = meaningful,
1 Yes = marginal or a poorly designed metrics-tracking system,
0 Yes = trivial work)

 

(2nd hint: creative work takes more time than routine work; so if your staff seemed to have suddenly slowed down, take a minute before you react to check to see if maybe they are trying to solve a deep, meaningful problem which will take time and energy. You just might be surprized at their initiative!)

 

T Mc

 

Rescooped from Marci Segal (@marcisegal) -- Thanks!

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Become More Data-Driven by Breaking These Bad Habits

Become More Data-Driven by Breaking These Bad Habits | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
Six behaviors that stymie managers and companies.
Synergetic Management's insight:

MY CONCLUSION:

Data is vital to performance improvement, but it must be the RIGHT data for the RIGHT metrics used the RIGHT way. Anything else is useless at best and destructive at worst.

 

My comments on Redman's 6 behaviors:

Intuition is very powerful but only if it has been TRAINED - this means over 10,000 hours of direct work in your industry in your functional area. Just never make intuition your only data-point.

 

Always let the data guide you to the answer. If you try to lead the data to YOUR answer, everyone will suffer. And they will remember your style and therefore mistrust you.

 

Withholding data in order to be proven right (in the end) and to prove others wrong is a classic sign that you are in an overly-political "turf war". It is setting others up for failure.

 

And jumping on others for being wrong "leads many to make more conservative and easily-defended, but sub-optimal, decisions."

(BTW, this is one of the many barriers to people more fully embracing creativity when problem-solving - creativity thrives on plenty of good, timely, true data). 

 

Analysis-paralysis's two biggest causes are:

 

1) inability to understand the "low risk" is not the same as "no risk"; and

2) unwillingness to make a decision.

 

While their cures are different, both involve getting outside for some perspective and advice. But don't wait - delay equals lost opportunity and higher costs.

 

Group think is dangerously indistinguishable from common-sense. Use creativity-enhancement approaches to give yourself options. You may find better solutions hiding in plain sight!

 

Mistrust of the data can lead to analysis-paralysis, but is easily cured. Test fast and be willing to start moving based on these results. Start performance improvement in the direction the data suggests - reality will tell you soon enough if you need to change.

 

While Redman suggests some good ideas to help break out of his 6 behaviors, the reality is that you are better off using the help and advice of a good performance improvement coach. It is hard to make changes to such a fundamental mindset on your own (and I have seen plenty of smart, talented managers hurt themselves trying).

 

(Of course, Redman knows this, and this is why the article is a solid lead generation piece for him - but I think I can do better at a better price ;-})

 

Data-usage is heavily linked to culture. If your culture does not support good data-usage practises and approaches, consider carefully if politics or real results will get you the future you want. If it is results, get yourself the results you want and go somewhere that supports your vision of getting real results. If politics, then good luck, watch your back, and wear Kevlar.

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A Messy Desk Makes You More Creative, Study Says

A Messy Desk Makes You More Creative, Study Says | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
Synergetic Management's insight:

MY CONCLUSION

The best solution: Have a clean desk that you can make usefully messy when you need it!

 

Explanation:

 

 

Essentially, the article reminds us that messy desks can provide necessary distractions that help our brains to come up with richer ideas when ideating - this in turn can lead eventually higher quality solutions.

 

Splashes of different colors, shapes, etc. as well as sounds and touch (you will hear more sounds and feel more things in the uneven surfaces of messy desks) mean that you HAVE to be affected by more divergent stimulii, which your brain uses to come up with more divergent ideas.

 

Clean desks are mainly solid colors and long, straight lines. Boring!

 

BUT, clean desks make it easier to move between steps in the problems solving process - this is because you are freer mentally to move through the steps in the entire creative process (ideation is just 1 out of 7 steps). This means it is more likely you will do something useful with your ideas.

 

Remember, creativity is doing something new and useful.

 

(See my post on why you need a good definition of creativity for more information )

 

The best solution: a clean desk that you can make usefully messy when you need it! Use toys, and other props to help make it functionally messy.

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Research: Why Companies Keep Getting Blind-Sided by Risk

Research: Why Companies Keep Getting Blind-Sided by Risk | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
Supply chain risk ain't sexy. And that's why it never gets the funding it deserves.
Synergetic Management's insight:

Wow--a great article on how risk can affect operations (via supply chain effects) and why risk management efforts often fail to deliver results.

 

As identified, most organizations do not provide their front-line staff to risk visibility.

--> How can staff help avoid or mitigate risks (before it is too late)?

--> How can anyone say they want employee engagement while simultaneously denying their staff the ability to engage meaningfully?

 

Also identified is that organizations fulfilled short-term priorities (cost-cutting) while overlooking the necessary balance between performance and performance capacity. This led them to be more exposed to risks in reality than their paper processes said they should be.

 

Why? Most people know that the hero is the manager who delivers on the immediate priorities. Ideally, our hero gets promoted out of role BEFORE something negative happens - then the blame falls on that the underling who sits now in our hero's old chair.

 

Few would be brave enough to admit that failures caused by simple extensions of past approaches should reflect on them also (as they did not stop these approaches, or worse, may have started them).

 

But this is not a simple gamble -- my higher career risk for higher chance at promotions. If output stops, EVERYONE bears the full costs. So this strategy is an unconscionable shift of risk. 

 

I saw all of the above when I did some risk analysis consulting in the nuclear power industry,  :-(

 

Enough said. Comments?

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Disengaged Employees? Do Something About It

Disengaged Employees? Do Something About It | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
Pointers for helping your people bring their best selves to work.
Synergetic Management's insight:

Let me translate this "sales piece" blog into something you can use....

 

I agree that most employees are NOT engaged I have seen this in plywood mills and nuclear powered generating stations. Scary, huh?

 

Now most employees are merely "checked out", not hostile, but a few hostile ones can cause lots of static if most of the others will not step up and stop them (or at least call them out on their behavior). But I digress.....

 

HOWEVER, this article's first recommendation is geared only to sell her services - it is too general for practical use.  Self-determination theory??? What is it and what do you *do* with it? You have a business to run!

 

What you need is a performance improvement *framework* that automatically includes the necessary self-determination, like Synergetic Management's FAMRA framework. Once this is in place, all kinds of improvements can be had, many with very little effort. 

 

FAMRA ensures everyone is on the same page - focus is on your key performance indicators, your targets, how you measure and report performance, and what do you do to improve it. The magic comes once FAMRA is set up correctly and your instill the discipline to use it effectively.

 

Also, FAMRA makes implementing all her other recommendation easier because they now are in a natural context.

 

Now that is information you can use!

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Domino's tests drone pizza delivery

Domino's tests drone pizza delivery | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
In perhaps the first bit of
Synergetic Management's insight:

This week's Friday "Fun Story" arrived just a bit early.

 

Wanted to save this for some "Friday Fun", but this was just to *delicious* to pass up.

 

Well, given that it concerns drones, makes sense that it beat out its competitors and arrived early!!!  :-D

 

Hey, at the very least, you gotta love the ingenuity behind the idea. Creativity and innovation rule!

 

(Editor's note: please innovate responsibly. Creativity is a terrible thing to waste).  ;-p  :-)

 

I'll sign off now - after all, I don't want to *drone* on and on ... <groan> ... :-)

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when there is a correct answer Exercise in creative thinking

A correct answer kills the creativity. See what happens when third grade students think there is a correct answer.I would be thankful if other teachers from ...
Synergetic Management's insight:

Verrrrry interesting.  Tons of implications of the unconscious impact our words have on others when we request their services. it also shows ijn stark detail how our self-phrasing of our own quests for ideas and solutions may set us up to win or sink us right from the start.

 

To my science friends: okay, while there may be some methodological gaps  in the process, it nonetheless opens the door to valuable inquiry. Even if some biases did creep in, maybe we WANT those biases to influence our daily communication if we are to get others to be more creatively productive! :-)

 

I am not arguing for a lack of rigor. I am arguing for us to be more willing to try and act in ways that ensure we support creativity and innovation, not kill it.

 

Those of you who studied my "The Creative Coach" course will know what I mean by the power of language to help or hinder others as they seek solutions to their problems.

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Innovation means doing what's best for Customers

Innovation means doing what's best for Customers | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
FOR a man dealing with the press at 8am, Charles Leadbeater is in pretty good form.

Via TechinBiz
Synergetic Management's insight:

Leadbeater is right: innovation is NOT about technology. Never was, never will be.

 

When you are buying technology, you are a PURCHASER, not an innovator.

 

When you do something new and useful - no matter how small or incremental - that improves your product or service, that is INNOVATION.

 

And getting your customers to be members of your innovative team and part of your innovation process is itself an innovation to product or service development.

 

Worried about how to innovate well? Give us a call at 416-873-8671 and we'll help you succeed.

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Enter India's amazing world of frugal innovation

Enter India's amazing world of frugal innovation | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
In 2001 a huge earthquake shook the state of Gujarat in India.
Synergetic Management's insight:

... and people wonder why I get so EXCITED at the power innovation and creativity can have for good in our lives.... Yes, I have DRUNK THE KOOL-AID and am passionate about creativity to the end! :-)

 

To those who say it cannot be done, sit and read. To those who are struggling to get it done, I salute you and extend my helping hand (just call me...)

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Can You Balance Innovation and Execution?

Can You Balance Innovation and Execution? | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
An interesting academic study was done a few years ago involving the lockers of professional American football players. As a general rule, the study found that offensive players’ lockers tended (Can You Balance Innovation and Execution?
Synergetic Management's insight:

WARNING: prepare for rant mode!

This is the kind of sensible, well explained (via analogy) article that you find often in business literature today discussing the supposed tension between creativity / innovation on the one hand and efficiency / predictability on the other. It claims that you need to somehow strike a balance between these two apparently contradictory forces. That you have to live with the trade-off.

THE ONLY PROBLEM IS THAT THE FUNDAMENTAL PREMISES ARE DEAD WRONG!

1) What if I could show you a structured, orderly process designed specifically to enhance and increase individual and group creativity and innovation? The Creative Problem Solving (CPS) approach is both structured and orderly (even if not always sequential - more on that some other time), yet it is highly creative and drives innovation faster and better than anything that has preceded it. The new Thinking Skills Model (TSM) is a fantastic way to both teach and use CPS effectively for an individual and for groups. It is highly structured and permits facilitators to maintain order amidst the high energy required for effective creativity and innovation. So you have a paradox: a structured process to promote randomness and disorder and enable them to be used functionally and effectively. Best of all, the CPS:TSM does this repeatedly and predictably.

So much for trade-offs and dichotomies.

So I say: throw off the shackles of "current understanding" that chain you to past understandings which no longer are true. Join the revolution! Move away from the old threadbare approaches which work but only marginally. Embrace the new and except that when it comes to generating ideas, you can do it faster, better, and cheaper than ever before, all while INCREASING the control you have over the results.

2) What if I could show you how a decentralized approach that often seems to be  disorganized yet is hyper-focused on the one key need required to move your business forward? Space being limited, I shall have to describe the FAMRA approach to Performance Improvement another time. (Sorry!) Suffices to say that this to puts to rest another false premise from the article.

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Hunting the spark of creativity

Hunting the spark of creativity | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
In his 1937 book, 'Think and Grow Rich,' author Napoleon Hill identified 13 steps to success, one of which was the power of the mastermind.
Synergetic Management's insight:

Conclusion: parts of this research are very promising, but the overall goal is ill-considered because it misunderstands what we already know about creativity.  :-(

 

General comment:

Using the power of computing networks to look for nuggets of knowledge that could easily lead to creativity or even be called creativity itself.

 

This is NOT a small task, but then again, the power of networked computers is something we have never seen before.

 

What I like about this:

They seem to be approaching parts of this problem very well. For example, recognizing that sub-groups have important relevant information that the main population will not know. This approach homors what Teresa Amabile identifies as "subject matter expertise" - a critical element to creativity (think of: you have to know the rules to break them).

 

Also, they are looking in some ways at modeling Dean Keith Simonton's idea that part of the "background processing" in incubation is the darwinian killing of ideas that do not answer the requested question (like a key that do not fit a lock are thrown away). If you have ever had an 'aha!' moment, your mind found the key to the lock!

 

I also like the fact that you never know WHAT they will discover - I personally doubt it will be creativity in computers, but it may be interesting correlations to be found in "big data"

 

What I wish they were doing differently:

This quote gets me hopping mad:

 

"The researchers say relatively little data is available on how the creative process develops over time in real-world groups, and what the key dynamics are in producing the most innovative ideas or products. They hope the insights gained from their work will provide both a theoretical and practical basis for understanding the process of natural creativity in individuals and networks." (emphasis mine)

 

Well that will come as a rude shock to researchers and practisioners in at least three (3) schools / organizations that have been studying and exploring creativity and its foundations for about 50 years! There are also many, many other schools and organizations studying creativity now, and they too are likely to be more than a little miffed!

 

Note to the researchers: please use the exiting data and models to advance your work. You will get farther standing on their shoulders of those who came before than you will in re-creating the wheel.

 

 

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Stephen Ritz: A teacher growing green in the South Bronx | Video on TED.com

A whirlwind of energy and ideas, Stephen Ritz is a teacher in New York's tough South Bronx, where he and his kids grow lush gardens for food, greenery -- and jobs.
Synergetic Management's insight:

THIS is a great example of the amazing things Creativity brings to pass IF you GIVE IT A CHANCE!

Yes, Stephen Ritz, the teacher and driving force behind the initiative had to work hard - so did his students!

Yet the results were well worth it.

Best of all, he follows true economic principles, bringing in investments that result in real paying jobs for those doing them, and giving people the chance to eat healthier food they grew themselves.

Triple bottom-line results, where others only saw despair, poverty, and decay. Now that is exceptional performance!

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Working Backwards to Unleash Your Creativity

Working Backwards to Unleash Your Creativity | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
To brainstorm ideas, try working backwards by taking a conceptual solution and finding a problem it can solve
Synergetic Management's insight:

MY CONCLUSIONS:

 

1) As per the title, you CAN start ANYWHERE in the process - let your need drive you. Ex: if you are at a step near the end (ex: planning for implementation) and it shows that the proposed solution is fatally flawed, then you should jump back to an earlier step in the creativity-enhancement process and make some changes to the idea (or come up with a new one) if you want to get much better results. 

 

2) If you are brand new to creativity-enhancement, the old SCAMPER model is by far one of the best methods for sparking new ideas. (I described it below.) Even the pros turn to it when needed.

 

3) The article I review is badly flawed, so I added some value for you. I highlighted it to warn you that great titles and authoritative media outlets do not always mean quality content. Too often, these poor articles are often an excuse to plug a book or a blog.

 

Bottom line: SCAMPER will serve you far better than the "approach" in this article. (see below)

AND

Starting anywhere in the creative problem solving process will get you better results than not starting.

 

MY RANT (then I will give you the meat):

 

I do not believe you ALWAYS have to study something in school to be good at it. Yet, I am finishing my Master-level studies in the Science of Creativity, and I can tell garbage from gold. But too many people feel that since there is a serious lack of awareness of creativity as a formal subject of study, then anyone can write something about the subject and be "authoritative". Again it is worse when these articles appear in respected magazines such as Bloomberg BusinessWeek!  :-(

 

This article is drivel. So why highlight it? Because it does a disservice to those of us who study and work with creativity as a real skill. If you have any interest in the subject (and you are reading this, right?), then you need to be warned that much of the material out there is not complete or even useful, but is often the flimsiiest excuse to plug a book or a blog.

 

REAL GOOD CONTENT:     

1)

Guess what: working backwards works ... when it works!

 

Seriously, who says you ALWAYS have to approach creative problem solving the same way each time? You can start ANYWHERE in the process - the moment you realize you need creativity in order to move beyond where you are to get the next step (or to look back and get a better answer from a previous step).

 

Imagine you are getting stuck implementing something that looks more and more like a mess of a solution. Odds are it is either poorly thought out or does not address the real problem in the first place. You can tweak with it all you want, but that likely will not help. Go back to where the decision was made to implement what you are implementing and see if you can find a better solution or a whole new one!

 

2)

Try the proven SCAMPER model if you want to use something to help you generate ideas you may not have thought of. SCAMPER was developped by Robert Eberle who played with Alex Osborn's (inventor of Brainstorming) list.

 

SCAMPER is an acronym for seven ACTION verbs to trigger ideas.

 

Substitute

Combine

Adapt / Add

Modify / Magnify / Minimize

Put to other uses

Eliminate

Rearange / Reverse

 

Note: over the years, some have modified the list with related verbs - I have included some of these additions (see the verbs after the "/") because they may be of use to you.

 

You SCAMPER by asking questions in many variations.

 

Ex: What can I substitute in this part/activity or product/process?

Who else?

Where else? I

n what ays can I substitute? etc.

 

Do the same for the other verbs in SCAMPER - see how many useful insights you get!

 

Do NOT worry if you cross over the line into other verbs -  go with the flow. Just exercise some dicipline and return to the root verb until your facilitator move the group on to another verb.

 

For more information, just Google SCAMPER and you will get some results. I have used it but not put up a dedicated page ... yet :-)

 

Thank you if you have read this far. I would love to hear your comments.

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How Criticism Creates Innovative Teams

How Criticism Creates Innovative Teams | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
A little friction generates a spark.
Synergetic Management's insight:

Criticism DOES NOT create innovative teams. Or at least, it does not as a general rule.

 

Just think about it - the implication would be that the most criticism-rich environments would be the most creative. You likely do NOT have to look far to see that this is simply not so.

(Follow politics lately? How are they doing in their "generating creative solutions" efforts? ;-})

 

Yes, yes, I know David Burkus talks about the "right kinds of criticism", so not just any criticism will do. But I can tell you that such "right criticism" that happens to be constructive is the RARE EXCEPTION to the common, garden-variety idea-killing criticism that abounds in the wild.

 

I can think of reasons why the brainstorming group underperformed. Assuming any group handed a simple sheet of "rules" related to 1 out of 6 steps (or 7 in you include the meta-work involved in creativity) of effective Creative Problem Solving would be able to perform is foolish.

 

If I gave a list of the 4 P's of basic marketing to a group and asked them to go design a marketing strategy, no one would say my test had any validity as to the value of the 4P's. And I would have to agree.

 

And if I gave this to two groups of entrepreneurs, I bet you those without a structure would do better (because they would not feel constrained by an externally-imposed approach but would do it the way "they knew how" to do it.
(Not all groups are created equal -- that too can skew results).

 

But take a group of entrepreneurs and train them in effective marketing-strategy creation, then turn them lose. Watch them outperform all the others.

 

Want more fun? Give a trained group a good facilitator, then watch them massively outperform even trained but unled teams....

 

It is the same with creativity - proper training, coaching, and facilitations are the keys to success.

 

Give me a group and let me spend a little time to train them and facilitate their efforts, and I can guarantee you a better result vs. any equivalent group that applies "criticism creativity." :-)

 

Go on, take me up on that bet. I dare you. I double-dare you.... ;-)

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3 Simple Ways Failure Brings Out the Best

3 Simple Ways Failure Brings Out the Best | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
Mistakes will happen--and that's a good thing. Take a few minutes and remember why.
Synergetic Management's insight:

Another article that is "mostly" useful on both creativity / innovation and performance improvement.

 

Point 1 - Failure leads to innovation

 

NOT EXACTLY. Failure just makes people more likely to try creativity and innovation because there is now an obvious need - "what I thought would work does not, so I need a new thought/way/process/tool, etc".

 

Penicillin would NEVER have been invented when it was had its discoverer not had the questioning mindset that allowed him to make his critical observations and ask "what is happening here?". (Phase 1 of our Creative Problem Solving Process is Clarification - asking the right questions in the right way).

 

 

Points 2 and 3

 

ALMOST. The key here is to accept the failure, learn from it, *then do something about fixing what caused it ... PERMANENTLY.* Anything else is a waste of opportunity and effort OR a feel good exercise.

 

Our FAMRA Performance Improvement framework incorporates failure identification as well as all the observational and reporting needs that drive finding the corrective actions that eliminate the root causes of the failure.

 

Note that "failure" is defined as *any* performance that is below  optimal -- this makes it far more robust that most "post-action" reviews that focus only on obvious, visible failures.

 

 

Conclusion

 

Because of the prestige associated with "expert advice", when a publication as influential as Inc. publishes "necessary but not sufficient" articles, it does everyone a disservice. Sadly, this happens all too often in even the most influential of publications.

 

I worry that this article readers will leave behind wrong messages:

- the readers, who get the wrong message because the article was not complete;

- the readers' clients, who will suffer as the readers implement incomplete approaches to innovation and performance improvement ;

- the service providers who *should* be hired by the readers who really want to be better innovators or performance improvers. These providers must first "deprogram" those readers in order to get them to use their services -- and not all want to be deprogramed.

 

I have heard "Oh, I get that" all too often from people I know could use my services -- and when you search for tangible evidence that they do get it (by their behaviors and processes), little to none can be found. But they do not need any help, as "they get it" already.

 

Don't let this happen to you. IF you want the real deal on Innovation Acceleration or Performance Improvement, contact us today. 416-873-8671

 

Thanks for reading, and I look forward to your comments.

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Early spatial reasoning predicts later creativity and innovation, especially in STEM fields

Early spatial reasoning predicts later creativity and innovation, especially in STEM fields | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
Early spatial reasoning predicts later creativity and innovation, especially in STEM fields.
Synergetic Management's insight:

This makes sense when you think about it.

 

You've likely heard about "systems thinking" -- some call it "pattern thinking" -- the ability to understand a system in its entirety, including how time affects the system and the system's outputs vary over time.

 

In my experience, spatial thinking is a key component to systems thinking -- a 3-D object is nothing but a system of interconnected surfaces enclosing a volume that itself interacts with other 3-D "systems."  And systems thinking can be a significant aid to creative thinking.

 

How, you may ask? Well, it gives one a "platform" to do some rapid prototyping testing. It has been said that Tesla, an electro-mechanical genius, used to "build" machines in his head and "test" them there. He was so good at it that he could even check for excessive wear on the parts after these machines ran for a while!

 

Remember Einstein's famous "thought experiments?" He created a testing space in his mind and tried out possibilities until the ones that made logical and mathematical sense won out.

 

Creativity and innovation challenge our old thinking paradigms by enabling us to use more of our brains that we are used to using. Remember to "make space" for your spatial thinking!  :-D :-)

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The Two Questions to Ask Before You Innovate

The Two Questions to Ask Before You Innovate | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
What's this project for, exactly? How are we measuring success?
Synergetic Management's insight:

Great real-world example of what I run into all the time - people who do not understand the innovation process NOR the underlying communications process.

 

Look, unless you have chosen to hire or know you work with licensed mind-reading psychics, you could do far worse than taking the time to be clear -- really clear -- about the desired goals and objectives, and any other relevant details.

 

Remember also that those you work for (your boss, the board, etc.) are likely not to be licensed psychics, so they need the "full picture" as well.

 

And being clear about how you measure success is CRITICAL. Without it, how can you show that you *really* are worthy of that raise? :-)

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Earthquake-proof table uses geometry to save lives

Two Israeli inventors have built a revolutionary earthquake-proof table -- an invention that could save the lives of school children around the world
Synergetic Management's insight:

For your evening drive and at home enjoyment - a good news story.

 

Sweet and simple: 2 students sharing this table could mean 2 lives saved in the event of a major disaster.

 

If you can't ensure the walls and roof are sound, the least you can do is ensure the tables are sound!  :-D

 

Innovation and creativity rarely comes any sweeter than this. New and useful indeed!  ;-)

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Island teen’s flashlight a bright idea, powering her into final at global science fair - Times Colonist

Island teen’s flashlight a bright idea, powering her into final at global science fair - Times Colonist | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
Island teen’s flashlight a bright idea, powering her into final at global science fair
Synergetic Management's insight:

Innovation does NOT have to be hard! A little bit of creativity and application go a LONG WAY towards "Aha, why didn't I think of that solutions."

 

Who hasn't dreamed of a flashlight that NEVER needs batteries, literally runs on (or due to) air and is neither shaken nor stirred  ;-)

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Deloitte | Millennial Innovation survey

Synergetic Management's insight:

Interesting to see how Canada (and the US) land in this inforgraphic. Also interesting to see both Canada and the US identify "local communities" as having the "most important positive impact on society" ... do we REALLY believe "communities" drive innovation more than business or academia?

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10 Ideas To Move Innovation Forward

10 Ideas To Move Innovation Forward | Synergetic Management: Business Innovation & Improvement | Scoop.it
cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by -= Bruce Berrien =- Through a lot of conversations on social networks, face-to-face opportunities, and reflection, I have been thinking about some of the t...

Via Tom D'Amico (@TDOttawa)
Synergetic Management's insight:

This article is about fostering innovation and an innovation culture in education, but we can extrapolate many of its good points to help us foster an innovation and improvement culture in business.

Admittedly, it is a bit disjointed and reads a bit like a shotgun-blast recipe for creating and changing a culture into one that is more innovation friendly. However, I believe the author has got some interesting points to make that may be of use to you. Remember, we are all at different points in this journey, and you never know when you might pick up something that can provide you with a bit of an aha or stepping stone moving forward.

This is not a fully descriptive article in any way shape or form, but it may have some nuggets of wisdom for you. I share it with you wish you the best on your journey towards creating an innovative culture and one that fosters performance improvement.

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Carl Heine's curator insight, June 11, 2013 10:46 AM

If only a few of these are needed to get the ball rolling, perfect...

Synergetic Management's comment, June 25, 2013 5:51 PM
Carl, I agree that starting is good, but may I suggest that ARRIVING is better. Too many articles about creativity, problem solving, or innovation are about starting, as if that was all that was needed. It is not - necessary, but not sufficient you might say. Too many attempts at innovation start well, but fail to deliver - I have seen this time and again. I fully advocate the need for a COMPLETE PROCESS that is required to be truly innovative.