The value of inter-employee collaboration can be best observed when looking at a new product, service, or perhaps process and then tracing back how it found a path to implementation. In-fact, consider anything that’s new and look carefully at the journey it took. Now compare the finalproduct with the initial idea that inspired it;was there a business case oran implementation plan? Was it a fully rounded concept and tested at that stage? Of course that would be very unusual, indeed it’s been through a series of steps to get there.
What you discover is that this initial idea has been: developed, criticized, improved, tested, and refined. Consider how each of those steps occurred and you’ll understand thatit took a series of interventions from either the idea originator or others to get the product where it is today. Collaboration has happened and we didn’t even think about it. At each step, someone with a different perspective intervened and helped move the idea forward, and in some cases, backwards before it could go forward again.
This is a process we’re used to. People have different strengths and help in different ways. In an online world, we need to find ways to encourage those same behaviors at the frontend of the process.
We know the value of collaboration in traditional innovation activities, but systemizing the process helps to increase the diversity of opinion available early on in the process. If harnessed correctly, this will improve the quality of the funnel and save time later on as those with issues or concerns may have them addressed during the ideation phase.
Value those that comment and recognize the team of people that contribute to an idea. Show them how they can add value to other ideas, and reinforce in your communications that collaboration has value whilst the company changes the way it collaborates.
In the final article of this series, we will consider how to review a large number of ideas and share tips and shortcuts to helping make the most of your evaluation teams time.
Colin Nelson is Director of Strategic Consulting at HYPE Innovation. Colin is a subject matter expert and thought leader, helping clients engage their enterprise to support existing or newly established programs on Innovation, Cost Reduction and Business Transformation. Recent clients include Abbot Labs, BASF, General Mills, Metso & Swisslog.
HYPE Innovation Learning Program Articles
HYPE Innovation is producing a series of five articles to help innovation practitioners, and those new to collaborative innovation, understand how to build a successful and sustainable enterprise program. Each article will address a different theme, will focus on clear actions any company can take, and highlight pitfalls to avoid.
|Article #1||How to Get the Most from your Innovation Software: Key Process Considerations|
|Article #2||Using Communications to Drive Innovation – How to Develop an Engaging and Sustainable Program|
|Article #3||Increasing engagement in enterprise innovation|
|Article #4||Driving Collaboration – Diverse Opinion is the Key to Innovation|
|Article #5||Making the Right Idea Investment Choices – Idea Evaluation at Scale|
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