Innovate or Die! Businesses led by teams that can create and successfully implement unique ideas tend to thrive, while on the flip side, companies that fail to innovate end up standing still in a world of rapid change.
That’s why employers are looking for job seekers who are creative and have the confidence to share ideas. They want employees that have the ability to see potential improvements in processes; listen to others and take on challenges; have enthusiasm for the company and their job; and can turn ideas into usable solutions.
Week two: Innovation
(noun) The implementation of creativity
There are lots of people who can see problems in the way things are already done, whether that be in the workplace, education, community or world in general. While some people can implement ideas to solve problems, very few can stretch beyond the known to produce something completely new.
If you feel like you can only think inside the box, don’t give up just yet. There are many ways you can work on your innovative thinking. Try these simple ideas.
Become an OBSERVER. Nature, places, people, processes, transactions…anything! Simply sit and observe. Giving ourselves time to sit still allows the brain time to make new connections between thoughts and generating new ideas.
I once wrote 50 observations while on a flight. I noticed things about people, food, the crew, the interior of the plane. The more I observed the more detail I noticed. My final observation was the view of the waterways from the air, descending into Brisbane. The view gave me the idea that I needed aerial photos for a project I was working on. Within a month I was up in a plane with a photographer, taking photos of Gladstone Harbour. Not a bad reward for my observations.
Follow your CURIOSITY. Curiosity killed the cat...but satisfaction brought it back. As the saying goes, chase your curiosity until you find satisfaction in an answer. Your inquisitiveness will not only give you new ideas and connections, it will make for interesting conversation starters.
Start CREATIVE conversations. I love inventing new ideas with young people, especially my own children. Today, while driving home in the car we invented a driverless motorbike with an inbuilt oven that could deliver fresh pizza to your house, in record time. In a past conversation, my seven-year-old created the idea of robotic bees to make sure plants could be pollinated. Not such a silly invention, in February this year Walmart put a patent on drone bees. Creative conversations allow your mind to play with new ideas. It can feel silly at first, but as new thoughts arise innovative ideas form.
Find your CREATIVE SPACE. Unfortunately, the spaces where we are meant to be creative sometimes aren’t so. If the walls and desks of workplaces and class rooms don’t spark creativity, try finding your own creative space. It can be as simple as a view from a window, a busy café, the park or beach, depending on what type of creativity you’re looking for. I have a few creative spaces, Bookface Café when I am working on publishing books and resources; the beach for fresh ideas and to add the spark to projects, the Sydney Startup Hub (or any startup hub really). Try out some new spaces this week and see what new inspiration you can find in them.
Bring your team on the JOURNEY. Innovation is not just about coming up with new ideas, it’s about implementing those ideas. This makes it extra important to bring your team along on the journey. Collaboration is the key to success. Innovative people talk, exchange ideas, learn from others and work together to create. Who do you want to be part of the innovation? Who needs to take part? How can you share the excitement of your innovation?
On the other hand, when you get to be a part of the team on an innovation, get excited by the opportunity to share your innovative thoughts and build on the ideas of others.
Want more opportunities to share your innovation? Contact us at YEP Careers to find what programs we are running next… firstname.lastname@example.org
There are twelve key foundation skills essential for success in any job. Being able to provide clear and detailed evidence of your skills, knowledge and approach to work, will show any prospective employer that you are the right person for the job. Each week we will profile one of the twelve foundation skills, along with what employers are looking for and tips to improve the skill.
To order a copy of My Career Passport, or for further information on the programs that support the resource, please visit: www.yep.careers