The Torrance Test of Creative Thinking measures different dimensions of creativity including the Number, Range and Originality of ideas. According to this test – not all people are created equal when it comes to innovation, yet innovation is crucial to the success of every organization – regardless of its business.
While it’s almost cliché to say, “we need to be more innovative”, leaders often don’t know how to translate that need into action at a grassroots level where everyone contributes. Innovation is an interplay between thinking preferences, emotional intelligence, openness, and idea generation. To think “out of the box”, we need to understand which box we naturally think and operate inside of, and then access tools to help us think outside of that box.
How many times has your organization “cherry-picked” the creative types to form “dream teams” to help solve business problems. This is exactly what top innovation consultancies do - they hire the best people they can find to innovate. But this needn’t be an either-or proposition. Forming a dream team is only one approach to innovation. You can also outsource innovation, bring in facilitators, create an internal innovation skunk works, train a core of internal innovation coaches or ninjas (think six-sigma black belts) and, despite many beliefs, train people to become better innovators. Given the range of needs in organizations, this last option is actually the best - especially if your ultimate goal is to create a culture of innovation.
Each of us has different thinking preferences. We have a bias towards investigation, ideation, impact, or implementation. For some reason, when people think innovation, they tend to focus on ideation. To build a real dream team, we need to include all of these thinking preferences.
If you understand the need for innovation, but you’re not quite sure how to do it, check out this video - how the i5 Process can help you - Taming the Innovation Hairball.
Co-Founder of Juice Inc, Thought Leader & Author
Co-Founder of Juice Inc.
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