How to cultivate innovation at work

Saturday May 25, 2013


The never-ending evolution in technology and the business world has sparked the emergence of many new businesses. There are all types of businesses to cater to the ever-changing needs of the current group of customers. Competition is stiff among business entities and in order to stay ahead and survive, innovation is crucial.

True, creativity can’t be forced. However, you can imbue methods into your workplace culture to get your employees to be more creative and innovative. Below are some tips on how to promote innovation in your organisation:

Hire an assortment of talents

If you want to create an innovative culture at work, it should start with having the right employees. So the initial step to take is to hire a variety of workers. Look into diligence, dedication and self-motivation when you hire someone, but always remember that innovation only takes place with a workforce that embraces diversity with open arms.

So, hire talents who, on top of all the conventional attributes, are able to diversify their mind paths and think out-of-the box. Set up a pool of staff that comprise different personalities and work backgrounds. What you want is a group of talent who can come up with new business perspectives and solutions to problems.

Practise flexibility

You have a pool of diverse and trustworthy employees; what’s next? Provide them with the privilege to work creatively. Establish a system that gives your employees the necessary breathing room to explore new ideas.

Don’t be stringent with the working hours. Some people are not the best of thinkers in the morning, but rather produce the best of results when they work late at night or in the wee hours of the morning. You may have an employee who comes up with the most creative ideas when working alone from home or when being outdoors. Be flexible and provide a leeway for these people if you want creativity to spark.

Accept mistakes

No one wants to waste his/her time and money on ventures that are bound to not take off. It is every company’s dream to have every one of their initiatives succeed at the first attempt. However, this is not the case. Mistakes and failures are part of innovation.

In 1879, only after testing more than 1,600 materials did Thomas Edison finally figure out the right filament material for his electric bulb. Employees should be given the assurance that their boss is not expecting every idea to be a success story. If they fear being reprimanded when a venture backfires, then it is more likely that they will never take the risk of exploring new ideas. Communication lines should be kept open with employees and appreciation must be conveyed for their efforts regardless of the outcome.

Source: The Star

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