It is important to know how systematic innovation can occur by the use of creativity methods which should stimulate your inner spirit.
Make your company innovativ!
Inspired by Johnson, S. „Where good ideas come from“ and Peter A. Gloor „Swarm creativity“
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How innovation can happen in a corporation?
This question could also linked to nature where you can ask why species have developed further. They are perfectly suited for the present life conditions on earth but during centuries creatures have not been like today. Some of the species became extinct and other survived. This parallels can be observed also in companies (system) and their products (sub system).
The answer of both questions can be found in the book of Charles darwin´s “The origin of Species”.
In this work, Darwin describe the theory that species evolve over greater periods of time by natural selection.
Nature has evolved out of an external “pressure” of problems which occured. Nature uses the advantages of exuberance by setting a lot of creatures into the world and only the fittest exemplars survive.
For an enterprise the need or “pressure” to develop products further is already applied. But the questions is how to get this product which is able to survive these hard conditions of an developing market?
The answer for this innovation-challenge sticks in the company and the innovation behaviour of its employees. To get an innovative corporation you need innovative people but further more you need a structure that supports this innovative mood.
For Darvin, a developing base (in his case coral reefs) for species must be an area where interaction between the fullness of creation can happen.
To transfer this property to a corporation, it means that the interaction between creative people must not only be possible. Furthermore, it must be possible to interact in a fluid structure or workflow, where the hierarchies are minimized and conversations can happen with no barriers. In a coral reef this will be supported by water and its current. For a company, these conditions can happen in a coffee house culture where different specialists can talk to each other about several topics. The advantage is that several experts have several ideas about the same topic and together they can push an idea to a final product by consulting all limiting boarders of a product developing process.
In the book of Johnson S., fluid innovation structures are compared linked to the human brain. In this “center of ideas” the mass lies always in a fluid where the neurons can create new interaction as new challenges occur. This interaction can be seen as solutions for daily problems like a kid learns how to open a bottle of milk or to use a scissor. The brain forms this knowledge into a new way in the meaning of a neurons path.
This fluid structure can be also found in the primordial soup of our planet. When you believe in the theory that at the very beginning, our planet was a kind of ocean of molecules, it needed some time to form primitive species of life. Different challenges formed different creatures and so several specialists had been grown over million of years.
When you look to human examples of the last few centuries, it can be observed that great ideas have occurred also in areas where the problem had happened and furthermore where a amount of people are living and can interact to solve this challenges. Take accounting systems, they have mainly developed in areas where this challenges had happenen, like in the Italian cities Venice or Florence in former days.
If you observe the reason for the industrial revolution in England, an innovation culture can also be found. In the second half of the 18´th century, England had a longer period of peace and a well-founded train network. Further, no custom borders within the country and the equipment (tools) and an entrepreneurial society.
If we would sum up these minds of Darvin, Johnson and Gloor, and apply it on companies, we could improve their efficiency significant. The side effects would be a harmonic, natural system and not at least satisfied employees which would have the feeling that their opinion is valuable.