Unlocking Innovation in Teams

It’s been a fascinating week, delivering the prototype workshop around ‘Creativity, Co-Creation and Agility‘ and reflecting on how to unlock innovation within teams. There’s a clear dynamic between permissions, creative spaces, creative processes, improvisation and narrative. Whilst i don’t feel ready yet to distil this into a full model, i’ve started by capturing these elements of agility and associated ideas into one visual map.

Creativity and Innovation

I’ve started with Disturbance, reflecting on the forces that stifle innovation, that muffle creativity. These may be cultural, legal or around hierarchies of authority. Or straight lethargy. People can be excluded through race, gender or sexual preference and that exclusion may extend to the exclusion of voices and ideas that are different too. It’s save to start with disturbance: we need to create spaces of experimentation and permission for people to innovate within.

We spent a great deal of time reflecting on the purpose of process within creativity: we explored improvisation within music, which often innovates within a framework, so i’ve included ‘framework‘ here as a catch all term to get started. There clearly can be a role for process and systems, as well as wider technology (such as the iPad and Paper App that i used to capture the initial ideas). Within ‘framework‘ i’m aiming to explore methodologies for experimentation, to understand how these can enhance or inhibit innovation, as well as exploring how environment can impact on creativity. My initial stance has always been that poor environments can provoke innovation whilst ‘creative‘ environments can be more style than substance. But i may review that to a more nuanced view: there is clearly a role for both.

The Co-Creative process sits at the heart of innovation and creativity in the Social Age: we work together to make sense of the world and to socialise and refine our ideas. But it requires trust and integrity to work: we need permissions to create (although that may not be formal permission, it may be socially moderated permission from the community to give us support).

Finally, Narrative: forming and sharing our stories. This relates to understanding the importance of amplification: creativity may include forming communities of change to carry our ideas upon their shoulders. For organisations, it’s about building a shared story of change, understanding and managing their risk and ensuring nobody is disenfranchised in the process.

I’m hoping to develop a wider framework to foster innovation and creativity in teams as part of a wider view of the Social Age: where the nature of work is evolving, communities sit at the heart of our personal effectiveness and social collaborative technology means that good ideas have legs.

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About Julian Stodd

A learning and development professional specialising in e-learning and learning technology.
This entry was posted in Agile, Creative, Innovation and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Unlocking Innovation in Teams

  1. Nupur says:

    this is cool! Loved this where the nature of work is evolving, communities sit at the heart of our personal effectiveness and social collaborative technology means that good ideas have legs.

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