Longtail Guide to Innovation Management: Nurturing Creative Problem-Solving
3 Ways to Nurture Creative Problem-Solving
1. Encourage divergent thinking. This means allowing people to come up with a variety of different ideas, even if they seem crazy or impractical. When people are only allowed to think about one "right" answer, they’re less likely to come up with truly innovative solutions.
2. Provide opportunities for risk-taking. People need to feel safe taking risks in order to be creative. This means creating a work environment where people are not afraid of making mistakes.
3. Celebrate creativity. When people see that creativity is valued, they’re more likely to be creative themselves. Make sure to praise people when they come up with new ideas, and create opportunities for people to share their work with others.
Foster a Culture of Experimentation
1. Make experimentation a part of your company’s culture. This means creating a work environment where people are encouraged to try new things and to learn from their mistakes.
2. Provide resources for experimentation. People need the resources they need to experiment, such as time, money, and access to data.
3. Create a safe space for experimentation. People need to feel safe taking risks in order to experiment. This means creating a work environment where people are not afraid of making mistakes.
Embrace Failure as a Learning Opportunity
1. Reframe failure as a learning opportunity. When people fail, it’s an opportunity to learn and grow. Help people to see the value in failure and to use it to improve their work.
2. Don’t punish failure. People are less likely to take risks if they’re afraid of being punished for failure. Make sure that people are not punished for failing, and that they are actually rewarded for taking risks.
3. Celebrate failure. When people fail, it’s an opportunity to celebrate their courage and their willingness to try new things. Make sure to praise people when they fail, and to show them that you value their efforts.
Nurturing creative problem-solving is essential for innovation. By encouraging divergent thinking, providing opportunities for risk-taking, celebrating creativity, and embracing failure as a learning opportunity, you can create a work environment where people are more likely to come up with new and innovative ideas.