Innovation Tautogram — A Simple and Powerful Innovation Tool

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The human vocabulary with millions of words is adequate to explain all of our expectations and experiences, even those which are imagined. Why not harness the power of language to discover new products and services? Author Shanta R Yapa shares the Innovation Tautogram technique, which can be used as an individual or a group exercise.

Humans around the world use millions of words in thousands of languages to explain and communicate their attitudes, emotions, anxiety, aspirations, etc. Experiences, irrespective of whether they are actual or desired, are already in the vocabulary of different languages but not available to us as actual products, features and processes. We have words to describe any unidentified flying object if seen suddenly, a creature not seen hitherto on the earth, an out of the world feeling a product can offer, a need felt, etc. Use this powerful brainstorming technique to mine your vocabulary database in a random way to bridge the gap between what is real and what is imagined.

Tendency to think rationally

Most of us spend many years learning things pertaining to our own disciplines. Therefore, our minds are trained and framed to think logically or rationally within those domains. Coming out of the box makes us feel uncomfortable. We are afraid, or simply not bothered to challenge the concepts, principles or theories we learn at the beginning of our professions.

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Everyone Talks About Innovation … But What is it Really?

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From manufacturing to accounting: in every sector, organizations sooner or later declare themselves ‘innovative players’. Sad but true: as a mantra for businesses far and wide, ‘innovation’ too often becomes a catchphrase devoid of meaning. So let’s break it down and get back to the nitty-gritty: what is innovation exactly, and why should you care about the word’s core meaning?

What comes to mind when you think of innovation? Ask this question to a handful of people and you’re bound to end up with answers that contain either the words ‘drone’, ‘self-driving car’ or ‘Airbnb’. Or you might just hear a random Steve Jobs quote. Although innovation surely is about these big and bold ideas as well, there is more to the word than meets the eye.

A working definition of innovation

The Latin word innovare – which means ‘to make changes’ or ‘to do something differently’ offers a partial answer to the question what innovation is. After all, doing new things is still at the heart of the matter. However, it does not cover the why. Organizations don’t make changes just because they’re fun or interesting. The key driver for all innovation is value creation and, ultimately, the long-term survival of your business.

A working definition of business innovation might look something like this:

Business innovation means making changes that add value, in terms of either revenue growth or increased operational efficiency. This value can be created by introducing new products, operational processes or business models. The ultimate goal is to safeguard the competitiveness and long-term survival of the organization.

 

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4 Ways Your Travel Brand Can Innovate with the Help of the Crowd

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When you’re thinking about innovation in the field of travel and transportation, more horsepower, hydraulics, and fuel efficiency might come to mind. But with the pace of change increasing rapidly, it’s difficult to imagine how government organizations and private companies will be able to absorb some of the most exponential and impactful changes that are sure to come in the next decade.

Just think: if the city of New York makes over $500 Million from parking tickets, what happens in an era of driverless cars where it’s impossible to violate a parking restriction? How will the city and its citizens shift to accommodate this new trend? The good news is that NYPD and its citizens are working together to look ahead to develop new systems that help everyone live in an unpredictable new future. And I think this attitude of looking to the crowd for new ideas is one that is going to continue.

But it’s hard to know what you need to focus on first. At IdeaScale we’ve identified four areas in transportation that require innovation in order to stay competitive and maintain sustainability.

  • Customer Service: This area seems obvious, but in many industries it is one that is commonly overlooked.

Read more about 4 Ways Your Travel Brand Can Innovate with the Help of the Crowd at Innovation Management.

 

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A Compelling Value Proposition: The Missing Tool in Your Lean Startup Kit

Eric Reis first introduced the concept of Lean Startup in 2008. Today Lean Startup is deployed far beyond entrepreneurial circles and is taking root in large, complex organizations looking to improve their new product success rates – and in the process build lean cultures. This is very good news. Too often the processes corporations use in pursuit of innovation can actually erode their capability to innovate. Still, when applying the principles of “Build – Measure – Learn” to initiating Lean practices in corporations, there is room for improvement…and possibly even for a pivot.

 

CVP before MVP

Corporations do not operate with the freedom of a startup, and navigating the internal learning and approval cycles can be even more challenging than effectively engaging customers. Before an intrapreneur starts coding, fabricating, etc. to test his/her new concept as a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) in the market, approvals and sponsorship from management is required. So rather than building an MVP, I recommend that these intrapreneurs start with a CVP (Compelling Value Proposition). Innovators need a way to not only get smart fast about what their target customers want, but also about what management wants and will support. An effective bridge for crossing the internal chasm between a potentially brilliant idea and the approval to build a minimum viable product is essential.

Getting smart fast

 

  • Start the process by sharing your initial thoughts with a few trusted colleagues.
  • Once you’ve considered the comments of these initial exchanges carefully, and you find the idea still has significant value, widen your circle of support by talking to experts and key stakeholders. Build a mock-up.

 

Here is not the end.. To view full article about A Compelling Value Proposition: The Missing Tool in Your Lean Startup Kit visit Innovation Management.

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Communicate to Innovate: Tips from the World of Improvisation

Effective communication is at the heart of innovation: harnessing insights from customers, partners and co-workers, sharing ideas, building upon points of view, advocating and gaining support for one’s innovations all require razor sharp communication. Interestingly enough, communicating effectively is a two-way street.

Listening and declaring are the building blocks of any communication exchange; however, if executed poorly, they can make an exchange fall apart. Whether in an improv scene or in a boardroom, the sender and receiver in a conversation must cooperate fully and whole-heartedly. Here are a few tips to help you communicate clearly and effectively as you embark on your innovation journey.

Make a statement

Great listening is not enough to make communication successful: you also need to practice the behavior of declaring, i.e. sending your messages skillfully. By introducing clear information from the very start, you will set your team up for success. For an improviser or a business person, a declaration signals the start of an idea exchange, a collaboration, the creation of something new. It’s a clear, concise way of letting your colleagues know your point of view and what you want to accomplish. A good declaration can be built upon, adapted and used as a springboard for more ideas.

You would be surprised at how often making assumptions and failing to clarify can put us in a mindset of fear.

To read more about “Communicate to Innovate:Tips from the worls of improvisation” visit Innovation Management. Also read our latest articles and our various programs of Online Learning Innovation Programs and Innovation Process.

 

5 Great Ways to Ignite Your Team’s Energy

There are always periods when, as a manager, you might feel that your team members aren’t as productive as they could be, when their morale seems a little low or when they don’t seem as fully engaged with their work as you would like them to be. This can lead to them leaving the company if the situation becomes really bad, which costs the company both money and time spent either hiring a replacement or training a current employee to replace them.

Celebrate the wins

When something goes well and a client is happy or impressed with the work of an individual or the team as a whole, ecognise and celebrate it. You don’t have to go overboard (not least because the effect will diminish the more you do so), but the energy and positive buzz that is created when something goes well is infectious and has a significant effect on the work and emotional state of the team.

Play to strengths

No team is going to be happy working outside their comfort zone – even if they are trying to develop themselves and learn new things, they have to feel confident and capable in their daily roles rather than worried and uncomfortable.

Here is not the end…To read full Blog about 5 great ways to ignite your Team’s Energy..visit Innovation Management.

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