Improvement should be an ongoing effort in any organization. The moment you stop growing, you run the risk of beginning to stagnate and fall behind, while your competitors are growing. That is why it is important to innovate in creative ways, using technology and assets that you have at hand. There is no need for drastic changes to the way your company does things. The most successful organizations avoid stressing the workflow by implementing new systems company-wide overnight. Improvement is a process that requires intelligent effort, subtle innovative and creative fixes, and adjustments with test periods and feedback. The smoother the transition period is, the more successfully the new technique will be implemented.
The best form of innovation comes from within your company. Your employees deal with the day-to-day issues and may understand best what needs attention. They can be very helpful when it comes to solving an efficiency issue because they are striving to save their own time. With that in mind, keep an open door policy and welcome ideas and suggestions from everyone. Host regular focus meetings to brainstorm any outstanding issues. By promoting these focused efforts, you will get more ideas and you're more likely to find a solution. Train in invocation techniques, encourage staff to study other industries or fields and appropriate practices, creatively fitting them to your needs. Above all, be supportive and tolerate mistakes and bad ideas for they lay the path to better processes.
Act on and reward successful ideas
Implement good ideas that you believe will improve the flow of things. It is important to show your staff you act on their ideas, so they don’t see the exercise as a futile practice and lose interest in participating. When people see their ideas in action, actively improving the workplace, they will feel more integrated into the team. Reward the winning team whose ideas have been put to work. Actively and publically recognize creativity with a tangible reward system. Reward the most active participants, even if their ideas are not put to work. Promoting an open ecosystem of ideas where positive results are rewarded will motivate your team to strive for improvements.
Anonymity and diversity
Anonymity and diversity are another pair of aspects important to boosting your team’s creative efforts. Many people are innovative and creative, but are too shy or reserved to openly share their ideas in public. You should invest time in one-on-one meetings developing trust and encouraging forward thinking, even if their ideas are not possible to implement. Furthermore, you can set up a system for anonymous suggestions to promote confidence. Suggestions are also usually more creative when coming from people with different personalities and backgrounds. If innovation and creativity are important for your business, your team should be able to see problems from various perspectives.
One of the basic components in promoting creative thinking is being relaxed and comfortable in your surroundings. It is proven that happy people are more creative and innovative than tense and stressed people. That is why it is important to foster a positive office atmosphere with good communication and healthy team relationships. This will stimulate openness and sharing of ideas, even if they are not perfect. It can lead to productive brainstorming and the birth of the actual solution. A positive environment also helps you retain employees who become deeply in touch with your model and are better at finding creative solutions.
Provide stimulating office space
Show your employees that you promote freedom and diversity. The happier and more relaxed your employees are, the more creative they will be. Design your office with rest areas and games to allow your employees to take mini breaks and reinvigorate their minds. Some companies have gone as far as introducing slides, swings, beanbag chairs, and the like in their offices. Arcade games, foosball, and Jenga are lighter alternatives that can improve office mood, encourage social interaction, and inspire innovation. By showing your employees that you are thinking ahead and freeing the rigid constraints of the office, you help them think more freely and can aid them in coming up with creative solutions.