I find it interesting when people talk about being innovative and don’t actually do things differently. You can’t expect things to change while working to maintain the status quo. Nothing new has ever been accomplished in the status quo. Our forefathers started a revolution by breaking with the past. It has been rule breakers—not followers—who have changed the world: Galileo, Einstein, Martin Luther King, Billy Beane, Steve Jobs, Jeff Bezos, and the young, advocate for education Malala Yousafzai.
The Challenge is on: this week ask your team, ‘What is the last thing we did that was truly innovative, really different than what the marketplace is doing?’ If you find you want to innovate and aren’t actually being innovative, maybe it’s time for a change. In my line of work, people often say they want to be different, then when given an opportunity to change, their defenses go up and foots go down. It can be hard to consider a different technique or product after following the same approach for a long time. Change can feel personal, like you’ve been doing it wrong all along.
Pushing boundaries is hard work. There’s often a lot of push back. Remember: you’ll never see different results if you don’t push yourself and your employees to change. So if you find you have room to push yourself and company further, follow up with this question: ‘What status quo are we protecting, and what is it keeping us from seeing? How can we open our eyes to the infinite possibilities that we haven’t yet considered, and how could innovative thinking help us truly be innovative?’ Good luck, and keep changing!
P.S. Did you hear about our Stevie Award win? We won on an entry that covered exactly what you read in this tip – innovation and challenging the status quo. Read our announcement here to find out more about how we move companies forward.