The phrase “culture of innovation” is everywhere. It's in every other blog post and new book on how to create the ideal work environment. It probably even has hashtags on Twitter. And with every company trying to build a "culture of innovation" into their established business, the phrase is just overwhelmingly everywhere, and no one knows how to really create it.
But let's get one thing straight, if your staff isn’t interesting and they find your company boring, they are boring. If people are just sitting around the office to collect their check and they aren’t interested in coming up with awesome ways to improve what you are doing daily, they're just taking up space. And you can’t inject “culture” into an environment where everyone isn’t excited to be there.It will make it even harder to happen. Trust me, no amount of cool bean bag chairs or big-screen TVs around your space will immediately empower your staff to think innovatively.
So let me save you some time and help you understand three things that can help you create this "culture" quickly and successfully.
Step 1 – Create an environment where you can freely communicate and withstand and tolerate any and all failures.
If you can't tolerate or understand failure, you won't be innovative. Millions of products have failed thousands of times before they were perfect in the marketplace.
Step 2 – Have a process in place for innovation.
If someone has an idea, where do they go? Who do they talk to? Someone has to own that process, and they must understand the ins-and-outs of your entire business to make the effective decisions.
Step 3 – Leadership has to embrace and tolerate all ideas.
They have to understand that every idea is not going to have an immediate return on investment, and that shouldn’t be held against anyone.
Remember, you have to build these steps into your values from day one; it can’t just be you or one person. Cultures are built by groups over many years, and this creates a utopic environment for those who value creativity.
Remember when people are not afraid of the small failures that may bear no value, over time they began to move constantly forward to something that will provide an incredible long term value. Each small failure will be a notch toward the perfect product you desire and understanding that is key.
If you create this environment from day one, you will inherently create an environment where people feel they are doing the right thing all the time, despite whether it fails or not. It makes the conscious choice for innovation into the company so that you don’t have to worry about how to inject innovation 20 years later.
Have a great weekend!