Gary Hamel, ranked by The Wall Street Journal as the world’s most influential business thinker, believes that innovation is a key factor in business success. “Most of us understand that innovation is enormously important,” says Hamel. “It's the only insurance against irrelevance. It's the only guarantee of long-term customer loyalty. It's the only strategy for out-performing a dismal economy.”
Most of us understand that innovation is enormously important. It's the only insurance against irrelevance. It's the only guarantee of long-term customer loyalty. It's the only strategy for out-performing a dismal economy.
- Gary Hamel
While many business leaders agree with Hamel about the importance of innovation, only a small number back it up by investing in the innovation management software they need to support organization-wide innovation.
Here are a few reasons why technology designed to foster and accelerate innovation might be worth your consideration:
Innovation is often misconceived as something that happens behind closed doors, with experts focusing intently until someone yells “Eureka!” But this isn’t how innovation (usually) happens. Innovative ideas can come from anyone, in any part of the organization, and impact any element of the business. Innovation management software captures those ideas wherever they originate.
Steven Johnson, business management expert and author of Where Good Ideas Come From and Everything Bad is Good for You once said, “If you look at history, innovation doesn't come just from giving people incentives; it comes from creating environments where their ideas can connect.” Innovation software accomplishes exactly that; creating an environment where your employee’s ideas can connect.
If you look at history, innovation doesn't come just from giving people incentives; it comes from creating environments where their ideas can connect.
- Steve Johnson
Coming up with innovative ideas is only the first part of the challenge. In order to drive the idea through to implementation, activity must be managed with structured workflow and active notifications. Progress must be tracked and the team kept apprised of next steps. Roadblocks must be identified and resolved, and results must be measured. All of this is difficult to achieve without innovation management software, especially for companies that are trying to innovate on several fronts.
One reason that companies fail to innovate is that they focus exclusively on the crisis of the day, and neglect the bigger picture. Gary Hamel said, “The single biggest reason companies fail is that they overinvest in what is, as opposed to what might be.” An investment in innovation management software is certainly an investment in what might be. It helps enforce focus and discipline, puts each project in the spotlight, and makes progress transparent. This helps keep the momentum and ensures that great ideas actually become improvements.
Increased employee engagement – Employees participate in a culture of continuous improvement and innovation more when they are empowered to enact change and recognized for their contributions. Innovation management software has a variety of features that do just that.
New thinking about old problems – The people closest to the problem may be able to suggest an innovative solution more readily than disengaged leadership. Software includes them in the conversation to that their voices can be heard.
Cross-functional collaboration – Innovation requires cooperation so innovation solutions are designed to bring people from different work areas together to see projects through from beginning to end. Software connects the entire organization around improvement and innovation, regardless of location, shift, or function.
Financial justification – Few people innovate just for the sake of innovation. Innovation management software aggregates the impact for you, increasing visibility into the outcome and proving the ROI of continuous improvement and innovation.