Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Shall you Assess Talent's 'Creatibility'?

Can grade on one's creativity help unleash talent's potential?

Traditional performance management in most of the organizations usually focuses on measuring employees’ efficiency: are they doing what being told to do well. However, with increasing competition and emergent business changes, should organizations today also assess their talent from innovation angle, in order to cultivate a culture of innovation and improve business competency, if so, HOW, what’re the technique or best practices can be shared?

Innovation takes place in companies with the right culture and climate. It may depend on the organization's willingness's to motivate and use the innovation and creativity, and this is a different approach in the mind of the people running the game. Overall speaking, you need to make everybody innovative and make the proper rewarding system and provide the environment that hosts the stream of ideas,  it is forward-looking to add "innovative" to the standard characteristics evaluated in the employee performance reviews.

First of all, you should give the employees knowledge on how to identify innovation opportunities: It also maybe that they haven't been asked to give ideas in a formal way. As marking someone "innovative" depends on many philosophical criteria, is it the number of ideas, usability of the idea, relevance of the idea in the present time or in the future, the magnitude of the idea, implementation of the idea, etc. 
1). creating something new - new knowledge starting the long road to a new technology.
2). Improving something or the process that makes it better
3).Adapting another's product or process to a new use or situation.

Second: Training and quantifying innovation into measurable are also important. Innovation is very difficult if not impossible to achieve without an organization-wide culture of innovation. The other issue is that most people do not consider themselves as either creative or innovative, so mentoring and training should be put in place before innovation is made a key performance factor. Definitely, quantify into measurable for innovation such as make them attend innovation training; make them read recent trends; make them submit idea reports etc. Lower the barrier to submit ideas but ensure proper systems for follow-up into project stage gate process. Create ownership of ideas either individually or as a team member

Third: Set up certain level of standard for assessing innovation characteristics in performance review:
1) There most likely will be metrics assigned to a good portion of the workforce in the "Goals and Objectives" section of performance review. The innovation characteristic will go into the "Traits and Characteristics" section in Performance Review. Such as the description for exceptional is:
a. Brings in bright, original and creative ideas from outside the organization,
b. Has infectious enthusiasm for making things better
c. Constructively challenges the status quo and has positive ideas for improvement
d. Consistently acts to improve things in their own role or team
e. Actively supports and adapts well to changes proposed by others

2) The other best practice is to use the following as a method to grade an employee on Creativity. A score is given between 1 and 5. Descriptions of typical behaviors for 1, 3 and 5 help to give manager guidance for picking a score, and then examples of the employee's behavior over the review period support the number chosen.Demonstrates the ability to conceive and develop unique or innovative ideas/approaches. Shows originality in solving problems or completing work.
1.) Unacceptable
a. Does not develop or implement new ideas/processes
b. Seems to have the attitude that creative thinking is for others to do - has a “not-my-job mentality”
c. Often resists implementation of new ideas/approaches
d. Subscribe to the “it’s always been done that way” philosophy
2.) A score between 1 and 3.
3.) Fully Competent
a. Develops creative solutions when faced with problems or issues
b. Is usually able to offer creative ideas/improvements when working with others
c. May need assistance but is typically able to implement creative processes/techniques
4.) A score between 3 and 5.
5.) Exceptional
a. Is constantly looking for innovative, unique improvements even when things are going well
b. Is able to work through the barriers and put ideas into place
c. Will build on the ideas/insights of others to come up with “outside the box” solutions
d. Generates an enthusiasm for creative thinking and helps others to develop their own ideas


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