As you plan your business activities for the coming year, consider adding some innovation activities to your plan. Here are a few tips that can help your business discover innovative ideas and turn them into profit.
1. Schedule time for innovation activities. You can start by scheduling a 10-15 minute block of time for creative thinking or brainstorming. This can be done alone or with a group of people. During this time, turn off your phone, email notification, and other distractions. Dedicate this block of time to thinking about solutions to current problems or thinking about how to further improve your current products/services.
2. Find your innovation environment. Find the environment that stimulates your creativity. Some people find energy walking outside or going to a quiet place. Others are inspired in busy environments, such as a coffee shop or a shopping center. Find what works for you and put yourself into that environment during your innovation time block. You may need to experiment with this to find your best environment. Keep track of where you are and what you are doing when you come up with innovative ideas – then watch for a pattern that identifies your ideal innovation environment.
When brainstorming with a group of people, find an environment that is best for group creativity. In my experiene, the best environment is often outside the normal building or workspace of the group.
3. Get your team involved. Innovative shouldn’t be limited to a few select people in an organization. Every business has innovative ideas just waiting to be discovered and turned into profit. Get everyone on your team involved in the innovation process – you will be surprised by the results. I have been involved in countless numbers of situations where significant ideas are created by people who are not typically part of the innovation or creative process. These people who are not involved in the day-to-day creative processes often have a different perspective and provide valuable new ideas.
If you have any questions about setting your Innovation Goals, please leave a comment below. I will personally respond to every question.
Steve Sponseller is an Intellectual Property Attorney and Innovation Strategist. He has 25 years of experience helping more than 1000 inventors and business leaders identify, develop, and protect innovative ideas. Get a complimentary copy of his Innovation Strategy Checklist to start creating a steady stream of innovative ideas that give your company a competitive advantage.