Growing a culture of innovation begins with open and honest communication. It’s easy rolling off the tongue, but the implementation of the concept isn’t always that simple.
Letting Go of the Past
Today my husband, Patrick, and I were discussing football. Understand, I don’t keep up with football. Recently, I have been choosing to watch football with him because he enjoys it; so I choose to enjoy it with him. Because of that, I have been exposed to Brock Purdy. I can’t remember what team he plays for, and frankly, it’s not important. What is important is his role on the team. He’s a quarterback, and according to my husband, he’s a pocket passer. Also, according to my husband, there is another quarterback on the team who is a scrambler. For those of you who are into football, I’m sure your ire is up that I’m not using all the right words or referring to the team, but hear me out…I’m getting ready to talk about innovation. That’s right, innovation for business coming out of a football conversation with my husband over our Sunday lunch!
Our discussion revolved around me asking "Why?" questions. And based on his answers, his cumulative answer was, “Because it’s never been done before.” This sent me on quite a passionate response referring to strategy, strengths, and weaknesses of a team, and finally landing on Thomas Edison and his invention of the lightbulb; something that had never been done before. And then, I asked the question regarding Edison, “Do you know how many times his experiments failed before he succeeded?” If you don’t know the answer, it’s “…at least three thousand…. "
Entrepreneurs can be natural innovators. We don’t come up with ideas because it’s been done before, we come up with ideas because there’s a gap and it needs a solution! However, not all leaders are entrepreneurs, and not all entrepreneurs are innovators.
|If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. - James 1:5 (NLT)|
At Nehemiah Project International Ministries (NPIM), we offer a Biblical Entrepreneurship Program that will teach you biblical principles for business which includes teaching about innovation. In order to innovate, you have to be open to being pushed. As the person with the gap in your product or systems, you are going to have to come to grips with the fact that other people have an idea that could make your business more efficient and/or effective. If every response you give to their questions and feedback is no, you will shut people down, and they will stop offering feedback.
Instead, you create a culture that allows people to ask questions. You create a culture that allows people to ask, "Why?". You even create a culture that allows people to fail! Early in Mark Batterson’s pastorate at National Community Church, one of the core values during that time was, “Everything is an experiment.” After reading some of his books and having a phone conversation with Mark, Patrick and I really grabbed hold of this idea in order to move us forward in decision-making processes. It’s probably been 20 years since we met him, and we still use this statement today.
Growing a Culture of Innovation
My encouragement to you, as your business moves along in the Business Life Cycle, is to start growing a culture of innovation in your business now, no matter what stage you are in. Give people the opportunity to try something new even if you’re not sure it’s going to work. There’s nothing like experience to learn valuable lessons.
Your team’s failures will turn into successes. Don’t stop them from being innovative because you are avoiding failure. When you start giving your team permission to explore ideas and opportunities, they will start being more innovative and creative. Failures come and go, but the ROI in their successes will increase substantially. Investing in your team will grow the culture of innovation that will move your business forward.
Click HERE to find out more about NPIM’s Biblical Entrepreneurship (BE) Program. The BE Program comes in 3 different formats:
- Self-Paced with Individual Coaching
- Packages with Group Coaching
- Live with Group Facilitation
If you have any questions or inquiries, reach out to us by clicking HERE.
Interested to know more about upcoming events and educational opportunities offered by the Nehemiah Entrepreneurship Community? Click HERE!