My weekly Late Morning Show on Radio Ramadhan broadcast on May 6th, 2019. The show contains some Business Creativity and Innovation as well as a brief look at local newspapers and for some unknown reason the Himalayan Times! Entertainment is provided with a little music from Dire Straits.
Can Innovation be measured? The answer is of course yes! The problem comes when your definition of Innovation and mine do not coincide!
Many people will trot out a list of KPIs that are just modified version of standard production/manufacturing indicators. These could include number of ideas generated, number of ideas actually turned into products, time from conception to production etc.
What I am interested in is the behavioural aspects. What actually is there that will allow a business to innovate? Its a bit like the voltage in a battery. The battery may not be doing any work if its not inserted into a device, but what is its potential to do some work? How can you measure the potential of your organisation to innovate?
For details of the Innovation Equation you can visit my website or send an enquiry and ask for details of Innovation Measurement. In a nutshell, the Innovation Equation is a model, the components of which are Innovation Output, Creativity, Knowledge and Maturity. These can be assessed via surveys to give a detailed picture of the organisation.
Surveys can be taken with demographics recorded such as location, function, job description etc. The resulting data will allow scarce resources to be targetted at the appropriate parts of the organisation rather than trying to pass every employee through an Innovation Programme. You will also find out where the barriers are.
Results are given via an easy to read target diagram and a colour coded traffic light system. More detail is there if you wish to have it.
Professional or amateur, which are you? Here are some thoughts on the differences between professionals and amateurs. If you do whatever you do as a business then you really should be acting like a professional even if you are currently not making enough money as you would like! These tips have been borrowed from well known writer and trainer Jeff Goins and modified slightly.
Please feel free to agree or disagree.
Amateurs wait for clarity but Professionals take action
You have to know who you are before you can work out what you want to do. If you want to be an artist then call yourself an artist and then perfect your skills, don’t wait for someone else to label you as an artist.
Amateurs want to arrive but Professionals want to get better
You need to become a student long before you get to be a master. You need to be around people who know, and allow yourself to be taught by those people. If not then you will delude yourself that you are better than you actually are!
Amateurs practise as much as they have to but Professionals never stop
You may need to practise even when it hurts. Its not enough to just turn up each day, you must challenge yourself. It is also said that frequency beats quantity so practise regularly not for long periods with long breaks in between.
Amateurs leap for their dreams but Professional build bridges
You have to build a bridge not just jump into the unknown. Work is a marathon not a sprint and you need to take time to get to where you are going. People often say ‘stick at it’ but what is the ‘it’. It is the person i.e. you not the thing that you are actually trying to do. This mat change over time.
Amateurs fear failure but Professional embrace it
You need to learn from your failures. Some talk about failing frequently. In an ideal world we would not fail, we would simply make the best choices on our way through life. However most of us will fail at something at some poitn in time. Be ready to learn from it and move on, it is not the end of the world.
Amateurs learn a skill but Professionals create a portfolio
You should master more than one skill. This is not a call to be a jack of all trades but rather to be a master of some (not one or none!). If you work on your own you will be a skilled person (say a mechanic) but you may also be a master of marketing (getting work in) or sales (selling more to your customers). The more skills you can master the more flexible your business can be and the more opportunities you will be able to take.
Amateurs want to be noticed but Professional want to be remembered
You must worry more about legacy then ego. Don’t think about the quick win but think about where your business is heading. Are you working towards your next book deal, speaking at a big trade conference or perhaps looking to take on a big fleet contract for your garage business? Look beyond today’s instant gratification and plan for long term success.
So how about it? Professional or amateur?
My weekly radio show Coffee With Derek broadcast on March 2nd 2016 on Iman FM. The show contains some Business Creativity and Innovation. Entertainment is provided with a little music from Dire Straits plus an interview with Caroline Palmer from Raising The Baa – Leadership and Management training using Sheep.