Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Three “R” Factors in Innovators

Great innovators are courageous, tough, positive, focus, inspiring and learning agile.

Creativity is a multidimensional thought process, higher level thinking, and often multidisciplinary association. Innovation is all about the madness of solving problems and doing things in the better way. You never know how innovative you might be in some field before encountering the problems and before the adoption of solutions. Innovators are the rare breed, but they are also within us. Here are three “R” factors in innovators.

Reciprocity: There is a full cycle of emotions behind innovation. The true trust is multidimensional. It encompasses trusting self, trusting others, and earning the trust of others. To be able to innovate and is able to trust, have the courage to learn when you fail; which we all do every now and then, take responsibility for the failure, learn from it and move forward. Trust is something we invest in based on our experiences, whatever the context. Such as integrity, authenticity, self-awareness, empathy, high EQ, all these are important factors to develop innovativeness as a state of mind. Trust is not straightforward, but multifaceted. Reciprocity is an important part of building trust and allows predictability and stability in the relationship. Creativity has a language, but it is altogether different from the one found in the business environment. Nowadays, innovation is often the team effort, thus, mutual trust is crucial to improve its success rate. Mutual trust becomes much easier if one of the two or more parties give trust by respecting each other. It is very difficult for someone to trust you if they do not believe you respect them, and probably vice versa as well. Reciprocity works because of shared goals, which create less stress on the relationship. Building a creative environment with trustful relationship means that people take responsibilities for failures, be inclusive, and focus on learning and experimenting better way to do things.

Ruleless: Innovators are rebels, and rule breakers, the one who can step out of a conventional thinking box, or linear patterns. Therefore, they often could see things further or deeper, and connect unusual dots to spur creativity. To put simply, innovators are "ruleless," without getting stuck in the comfort zone or getting trapped in the conventional thinking box. Often the “box" is a mental construct made up of personal (self-imposed) and environmental (culture, parental/peer influence, society) components that one operates within. Some rules don't make sense or stop people from making progress, so that's the point where you must examine your own intentions - break the rule, follow the rule, or ignore the rule? Due to the creative and progressive human nature, from one generation to the next generation, the outdated rules continue to be broken down, and the new “rules” get updated to reflect the new age, adapt to the new speed, and fit for the new perspectives. Rather than being ruled by rules, perhaps we should be ruled by intentions or setting more timeless principles. You voluntarily follow because they make sense, and you want to follow them, so you intend to follow them. What's important is your own understanding of your intentions. But in spaces where neither those internal intentions nor outward expressions of expectations and therefore actions by others are understood consciously. Replace the operative word "rules" with principles or 'expectations' that allow thinking room, and speed up collective progress and societal advancement.

Resilience: Failure is part of innovation; it is very much an intrinsic part of innovating. Generally speaking, to catalyze innovation, you must allow room for failure, for tangents, for being "different.” Like many other things in business, innovation is a balancing act to have enough failure and an environment that encourages learning from failure quickly and cheaply. Thus, innovators are equipped with such a resilient mindset in order to fail forward, and adapt to the continuous digital disruptions, without having failures that are too frequent or too expensive. From innovation management perspective, the art of building an innovative organizational environment that facilitates creativity involves paying attention to employee wellbeing and building individual emotional resilience to generate more positive emotions and reducing unnecessary organizational pressures or unhealthy competition. With resilience, individuals have been able to bounce back from setback or innovation failures. Thus, great innovators are courageous, tough, positive, focus, inspiring, and learning agile.

The root of our differences is in the different perceptions and the lenses we use, which we have with respect to creativity or innovations. Anyone is capable of innovating if they are capable of silencing the noise in the mind and the background, think outside the conditioned mind without fear and be resilient to fail forward. So, they can earn the stripe as innovators.


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