Sunday, December 27, 2020


To develop organic innovation, it is crucial to see the context, perceive invisible, identify the leverage point of the ever-evolving digital ecosystem. 

The digital era upon us is about innovation and people centricity. The organic organization is an interconnected “living” thing that needs to keep growing and expanding. It is recharged via organic innovation, continuous improvement and cultural evolution. An organic innovation is not serendipity, but an interdisciplinary management approach which covers information mining, entrepreneurship, technology transfer, process optimization, etc., and stands in between management, economy, psychology, technology, sociology, and neurology, etc.

Digital organizations are sensitive to the emergent factors: The digital paradigm arises out of new knowledge, and the emerging trends as the digital shaper reinforce the characteristics of the business such as enlightenment and people-centricity. Organic innovation management is about catching the rising tide of business or industrial trends, identifying the space of opportunity, defining the scalability of the products/services, what timescale to allow before making a go/no-go decision for growing the business organically. Technically, it’s critical to collect information and feedback, doing enough homework for planning with all necessary adjustments on the way to fit the emerging situations. Perfecting the art of innovation is about shaping a bigger box of thinking either individually or collectively. Engage with visionary leaders because they can often inform you of what is coming, what customers need and perhaps the future trend of products and services.

Foresight is an ongoing conversation. Thinking outside the current constraints and comfort zones requires a different vision and the courage to pursue it, in order to bridge between the innovations of tomorrow with the business realities of today. Information mining helps the organization align the business reality into digital strategy, develop a purpose and future perspective, shape the future of the workplace as a highly collaborative and flexible environment, with flatter hierarchy and innovative leadership. To make continuous innovation, digital leaders have to keep evolving and gaining broader views, mine the future openly, discover unexpected connections between the business and its rich environment, share their vision generously, and shape the future together to grow the company as a living thing.

Rejuvenate the corporate culture to renew creativity energy: Culture is like soil, the organization is like land, and people are like plants. Environment either encourages or discourages innovation, the ease or difficulties inherent in surviving. The more fertile the soil, the better nourishment the crop and plant products will be, and there are better opportunities to nurture organic innovations. It’s critical to develop an organizational environment that inspires positive emotions and facilitates creativity, allow ideas to flow, get protected, channeled and nurtured. It’s about rejuvenating a “culture of innovation" which incorporates multiple and diverse components to encourage idea sharing and risk-taking for reinventing a highly innovative business through collective creativity and effort. The fine principles of integrity, corporate governance, and other related good practices should never be thrown away with the cultural change.

In specific, a living organization has cultural attributes such as openness, flexibility, responsiveness, passion, engagement, relationship, resilience, inspires creativity. Increasing competition may also demand some cultural changes where rigid practices have to give ways to flexibility in the manner of innovation management. Business management keeps monitoring the pulse of inclusiveness and culture fit, and makes an assessment of the business environment by asking: What is triggering your emotions for doing innovation? What about trust? Or what about happiness? What about the right innovation climate? Your personal climate, your team climate or your organizational climate? It’s critical to foster a culture of innovation across functional disciplines and embed innovation management mechanisms into the corporate DNA. Innovation, in general, is surely a discipline to provide the creative workplace for people to exercise their talent and unlock their potential. People are both means and ends of innovation management.

Reinvent the organizational structure to catalyze innovation: Lack of systematic processes or having overly rigid processes both should be blamed for stifling innovation. An organic digital organization consists in being able to break away from static, stale, and slow patterns, and being able to make continuous adjustment and innovation. The organization of the future will be "organically" and adaptively developed, iterating and empowered by an intelligent organizational design that puts values and people before rules and roles to enforce cross-functional communication and collaboration. Within a well-designed structure and fine-tuned processes for innovation, dedication and effort will be spent on innovation rather than overcoming organizational hurdles, internal politics, and pushing against structural boundaries.

In practice, designing an organic and multidimensional organic, socio-technical business system is more difficult than designing a single-dimensional “mechanistic system." Interrelational innovation management processes are developed to help reduce tensions, frictions, and business conflicts that arise; interactive management processes are developed to help communicate objects and concepts with clarity. An ecosystem perspective as the digital shaper allows the organization to explore digital in all directions and scale up innovation systematically.

It is a continuously changing world, and no organization can afford to stick to its old ways of doing things. To develop organic innovation, it is crucial to see the context, perceive invisible, identify the leverage point of the ever-evolving digital ecosystem. It requires much more time, energy, passion, courage, experimentation, retreat, and reflection to get clear and focused on innovation in a disciplined way.


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