I’ve just finished reading a report by Ernst and Young titled “Connecting Innovation to Profit – Five key insights from the world’s leading entrepreneurs.” http://www.ey.com/Publication/vwLUAssets/Connecting_inovation_to_profit/$FILE/EY_innovation_survey.pdf

One of the quotes I liked in this report was “Innovation is not a department, it is a mentality”.

This resonated with me for a number of reasons one which was around my belief that an innovative mindset is one that encourages us to generate and explore alternative perspectives and that this is of vallue in all aspects of business activity. For example, if i’m talking to a colleague  and have only the one way to listen this will not be as empathetic or insightful compared to the situation when i might have multiple ways to listen. This might occur if the person is being quite emotional and all i can do is think rationally, leading to a mismatch in our communication effectivness.

Likewise if our team is seeking to improve efficiencies then being able to generate a range of alternatives will increase our chances of identifying an effective solution. Innovative thinking could even extend to the means by which employees are motivated in an organisation – if an organisation is adopting strategies of yesteryear whcih are proving ineffective it might be time to start generating more relevant alternatives.

By adopting an innovative mentality we have this as a ready and responsive resource throughout our business activities and not just one to be submitted to a department for consideration.