Tuesday, March 7, 2017

On Barriers to Innovation in Organizations

Q: Why do often truly innovative folks eager to help their organization get their ideas turned down? 

A: For a whole lot of reasons. 

One major category of answer is because of "group think". Another name for group think is... well... I can't write that here. 

Another is organizational inertia, or opposition/adversity to change/risk (happening even when _that_ is what is called change management). 

Yet another is complacency of managers/executives, coupled with potential qualifications in-balances between more "junior" idea holders and more "senior" decision makers on idea implementation. 

Another artifact skewing our data is the self-filtering effect of those who report the cases. If your idea _was_ selected you are more likely to be busy implementing it than having the time to complain about it not being selected/implemented. Hence, beware of a false problem when you see one… 

A somewhat more encompassing answer could have something to do with the resonance between the characteristics of the environment (openness and incentives to ideas and readiness for implementation by fast trial-and-error selection) and the expectations of those who act/work/produce ideas in it. Such resonance produces a firm's enhanced ability to survive not just today, but also the day after tomorrow...

Adrian S. Petrescu, Ph.D., J.D.

"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedy" (Sir Ernest Benn)

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