What is Innovation

Innovation is associated with creative thinking, applied imagination. Innovation involves five skills: associating, questioning, observing, experimenting and networking. According to Drucker (2011), “innovation is a function of entrepreneurship (p. ). Two-thirds of innovative ideas come from genetics, while the rest comes from learning, experimenting, practicing, and then gaining the confidence to finally create.

Innovation Killer

On the other hand, innovation killers as the name implies, minimize, reduce or eliminate the possibility of creating or being innovative. Most of the root cause on this is the desire to remain within the comfort zone by minimizing risk, rely on predictability and satisfy others, such as market analysts. The overemphasis on financial forecasts and analysis can be detrimental to utilizing applied imagination or creative intelligence.

Decision Rights and Innovation

Porter (2011) defines decisions within an organization as “the coin of the realm in business” (Location 3696, Kindle edition). Every success or every opportunity that was missed are caused by a decision that someone did not make. What set top performers above the crowd is the quality, the speed and the execution of their decision making. If the roles for decision-making are not clearly defined, there is a great potential for confusion and ambiguity resulting in poor organizational performance and loss of money. An environment like this will have great difficulty innovating. Having specified decision roles provides the foundation for an organization to operate successfully, and then to seek ways of innovating.

I can provide a great example as a result of a conversation I had with a client today. About 6 months ago they called me after finding me in the internet. I met with the wife and an assistant who are working onsite, remotely with the son who is in another state, and after this meeting was over, I met with the owner of the company and the wife. They asked me to help them set up their internal accounting system, which they did not have in place and lead the way regarding their financial information because they wanted to do things the right way. I gave them a proposal, but they never signed it. Recently, the son contacted me asking me to compile the company’s financial information from the bank statements for the year 2018. I was puzzled as I realized that they did not have an internal accounting system implemented yet, but were rushing to compile the financial information in light of the tax season coming up. I spoke with the owner about my observations and explained how this method did not allow them to do a lot of planning in the face of the new tax law, as well as, does not provide them with regular financial reports to base their business decisions and many other benefits. The owner explained that too many people were making decisions, intervening with the finances of the business and he was ready to change the situation and enable me to take charge of his accounting department where I will be able to assign roles, develop job and process mapping, among many other things. This is a clear example of a company that is far beyond from taking advantage of incorporating innovative ways because of the confusion within.

 

References

Duggan, W. (2013) Creative Strategy: A Guide for Innovation (1st ed) New York, NY: Columbia University Press. IBSN: 978-0-23116052-0

Rogers, P. & Blenko, M. (2011). How Has the D? How Clear Decision Role Enhance Organizational Performance. HBR’s 10 must reads on Strategy. (pp. 229 – 248).Boston, MA: Harvard Business Review Press.

Koulopoulos, T. (n.d.). Beware The 10 Innovation Killers [Web log post]. Retrieved from Beware The 10 Innovation Killers

Dyer, J., Gregersen, H., & Christensen, C. (n.d.). The Innovator’s DNA [Web log post]. Retrieved December, 2009, from https://hbr.org/2009/12/the-innovators-dna