Innovating in management is the next frontier of competitive advantage

By Natalie Turner, Author, Yes You Can Innovate

Innovating in management is the new frontier of competitive advantage. Why? Because copying ways of managing and leading people, and building a culture that creates an environment that helps innovation to flourish, is hard to do. This new frontier places HR and Organisational Development as a central function in enabling innovation.

One reason I created the 6 ‘I’s® of Innovation profiling tools, was to provide a road map, with gap analysis, that will help improve innovation performance at each stage of the employment lifecycle. As managers and leaders become familiar with the power of harnessing innovation strengths, they, in turn, will improve their overall management performance.

What are the 6 ‘I’s® of Innovation?

In my book, ‘Yes, You Can Innovate,’ a practical guide full of tips, tools and methods to help people practically innovate, I have structured the content around the 6 ‘I’s®. They are:

  1. IDENTIFY with the mindset of CURIOSITY to spot opportunities by understanding trends and customer needs.
  2. IGNITE ideas with the mindset of CREATIVITY by creating novel solutions.
  3. INVESTIGATE with the mindset of CRITICAL thinking, by developing propositions, prototyping and testing.
  4. INVEST with the mindset of COURAGE by creating business models and plans for investment.
  5. IMPLEMENT with the mindset of COMMITMENT by bringing an idea to life and creating value.
  6. IMPROVE with the mindset of being CLEVER by optimizing an idea into another area of opportunity.

All of the 6 ‘I’s® contribute to the innovation process, and all are needed to deliver something that will create impact, value or PURPOSE. Why are you trying to innovate in the first place, and what is it that you want to achieve? Covering the range of innovation skills that are required is fundamental to success.

How can 6’I’s® guide recruitment and team selection?

So, let’s look at one aspect of the management process. Recruitment and team selection. When you are next scanning through a range of CVs, broaden out the concept of what it means to be innovative and read them through the lens of the 6 ‘I’s®.

  1. IDENTIFIERS will often be highly networked and have good trend-spotting skills. They will often have strategic experience.
  2. IGNITERS will have jobs and skills that show how they challenged assumptions, they will often show a passion for learning and may spend time with other creative people.
  3. INVESTIGATORS are analytical and structured. They are generally good at prototyping and design thinking methods.
  4. INVESTORS will be good at creating business plans, pitching and galvanising support for an idea.
  5. IMPLEMENTERS will show strong project management and risk assessment skills. They may also be team leaders and can lead others towards getting things done.
  6. IMPROVERS will analyse what went right or wrong in a project and capitalise on that. They may show a history of scaling ideas and involving customers in the feedback process.

Harness the power of diversity to optimise innovation performance

Want to learn how to improve your ability to innovate in management by applying the power of the 6 ‘I’s® individual and team profiles? Join one of our Certification Programmes in London or Singapore. Please visit our site to learn more about the 6 ‘I’s® or for more information or follow me on LinkedIn for ongoing insights.

Natalie Turner, Speaker, Author, Yes You Can Innovate

Copyright. Natalie Turner, all rights reserved. 2018