Tuesday Thinkings

Time off from work resulting in indulgent, comforting days at home give me time to reflect and consider possibilities. These days, many of my considerations are provoked by what I find on the Internet.So, not because we’re all moving into a new year, but because I can actually be mentally creative, I’m exploring new thoughts.

I was recently led to a very provoking blog which gave me two great posts. First, there was a nice little moral tale about two wolves.

Second was a list of 50 Ways to Build a Culture of Innovation. While meant for corporate leaders, the beauty of this list is that it is so well done that can be be applied to individuals in small school libraries as well as small business owners, executives or anyone who can define in anyway define their own workspace. I’ve taken the top 11 items from the list because I’ve noticed that some of the items are actually restated in different ways and some simply don’t apply to me.  Perhaps you can find them useful in some way as well. The full list can be found on the Heart of Innovation Blog.

1. Remember that innovation requires no fixed rules or templates — only guiding principles. Creating a more innovative culture is an organic and creative act.

2. Wherever you can, whenever you can, always drive fear out of the workplace. Fear is “Public Enemy #1” of an innovative culture.

3. Have more fun. If you’re not having fun (or at least enjoying the process) something is off.

4. Always question authority, especially the authority of your own longstanding beliefs.

5. Make new mistakes.

6. As far as the future is concerned, don’t speculate on what might happen, but imagine what you can make happen.

7. Increase the visual stimuli of your organization’s physical space. Replace gray and white walls with color. Add inspiring photos and art, especially visuals that inspire people to think differently. Reconfigure space whenever possible.

8. Help people broaden their perspective by creating diverse teams and rotating employees into new projects — especially ones they are fascinated by.

9. Ask questions about everything. After asking questions, ask different questions. After asking different questions, ask them in a different way.

10. Ensure a high level of personal freedom and trust. Provide more time for people to pursue new ideas and innovations.

11. Encourage everyone to communicate. Provide user-friendly systems to make this happen.