Thursday, April 25, 2013

Innovation Requires Energy

People need physical, mental, and emotional energy to bring ideas to fruition.  Innovation cannot be manifested without sufficient energy.

When energy is used to survive in an environment full of chaos, and lacking guidance or paths to get basic day-to-day things accomplished, there is very little energy left to bring new ideas to life.

How to enable people to innovate:

1       People benefit from a clear path to follow.   A clear path includes a North Star and defined framework.  A North Star defines where we are headed, what is our big picture goal, and what are the guiding principles that govern our decisions while in pursuit of the North Star.  Defined framework includes what are our tools, platforms, processes, etc. 

The benefit of a clear path is that precious personal energy can then be devoted to bringing creative new ideas to fruition.  When energy must be used to survive in an environment that is full of chaos, and lacks guidance to get basic day-to-day things accomplished, there is very little energy left to manifest new ideas.

      People have a need to add value and be of service – Enable this.  This is particularly true of people who have been in their careers for a while and have gained scar tissue and wisdom – they have a driving need to put their insights, knowledge and wisdom to work for a greater good.  The greater good might be as lofty as saving the planet or as local and pedestrian as helping fellow colleagues thrive, but it is a driving need that when filled allows the person to be in flow, and when denied causes the person to feel a palpable void.  When people are relegated to working on menial jobs, or when their tasks are always dictated to them, it denies not only autonomy, but their need for purposeful work.  Enabling people to be of service also promotes innovation.  

        When a person’s real passion comes into play, heroic things happen.

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