This article is based on PwC Advisory Partner, Global New Business and Innovation Leader Vicki Huff who gives her views about how innovation happens.
Huff states that Silicon Valley is indeed a celebrated hub of activity, with a strong network of skilled professionals and investment that drive good ideas but it by no means holds a global monopoly on innovation.
“So what I would say to anyone who’s looking for answers to how innovation happens is that it’s not rocket science,” says Huff. “It’s often about approaching an issue with the curiosity and open mind of a child. But the day-to-day grind of the modern work environment can zap that kind of creativity.”
“Innovation, like a garden, won’t grow on its own. We need to plant seeds and treat them with care, to create not just a garden but an ecosystem. That’s the kind of innovation that sustains and regenerates itself. Innovation is a mind-set, not a technology, or a product, or a solution. And it requires time, commitment, and investment.”
Although Huff says “the most high-profile innovators will tell you, there’s no secret formula for great ideas,” the proffessor gives some of the things that create innovators according to research. These things are listed below:
Tap the power of pride
“Pride in your work and organisation is a powerful motivating and creative force,” says Huff
Be proud of your work and what you do to be innovative. If you do not take pride in your work you become demotivated and once you are demotivated you start working for just for the sake of working without any curiosity to learn more or commitment resulting in you becoming less innovative.
Make Failure an Option
A person may have a great idea in mind, but the question “what if I fail” normally drives the person out of trying the idea. Why don’t you make a risk and go for your idea and see if it works?
“Preconceived ideas and solutions can block innovation and change,” Huff says. “PwC’s digital services practice leader says you have to be willing to take risks and embrace the uncertainty and potential for failure inherent in those risks.”
Rethink your Culture
Empower yourself to make decisions, freedom to innovate and work-life balance. Make sure your work and your life time is balanced. Have time for your family not spending too much than necessary and also your work. Your culture should be aligned to your business priorities for better performance.
Place your customer at the Center of Innovation
You should ask yourself, “What value are you delivering with your innovation?” According to Huff it’s no longer enough to target customers.
“To stay ahead, you need to be thinking about long-term experience — the value you want to create for your chosen customers over three to five years.”
Flex your Growth
Innovation doesn’t necessarily happen between 9 a.m and 5 p.m according to Huff. You have to be flexible to work at any time and in even more difficult for you to be innovative. Sometimes it is the hardest environment that creates innovation as one tries to solve a problem. Ideas of solving problems or reducing time spent doing some work also creates innovation.
About Vicki Huff
Vicki Huff has more than 25 years of experience in helping technology companies innovate and execute growth strategies. The woman is among the 2016 Silicon Valley most Influential Women in Business, has got a 2008 Client Service Award, Women in Consulting and also nominated among Silicon Valley 40 under 40 in 2007. Read more here