“Let’s innovate. Let’s ideate. Let’s blue sky new solutions to this problem.” These words ring out loud and clear in many boardrooms across the country as businesses strive to remain relevant, wanted, and needed in a world of abundance and sameness.
The reality is that the strategies, metrics, and structures that are successful now may not necessarily be the way to secure the future.
Comfortable beige strategy and activity is not enough. In actual fact I don't think it ever was — think Atari going from leader to retro gamer, the demise of Blockbuster, and that “Kodak moment” no more. A beige strategy is a slow downward spiral to disaster. It’s unappealing to shareholders, clients, customers and employees, who are all investing something of their own — dollars, time, energy — to ultimately deliver some level of return.
Driving innovation, creativity and ensuring continued relevance is a must. As leaders, we need to find new ways to create divergent moments where crazy ideas can breathe, where all ideas are given the chance to be good ideas, where everyone and anyone can safely share their thinking. Create the space to capture a potential gem, to create the future we dream of right here and now before it becomes the present and passes us by.
We are living in a world that is volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous. We are living in a world where change is constant and firing at hyper speed. Taking quality time to stop, to think, to allow the ideas to land and germinate is not necessarily high, or even high enough, on the to-do list of many. And yet to survive we need to be brave enough to look to the edges, to explore possibility, to be curious about anything and everything, to learn always — to create those divergent moments.
It’s time to tap in to diversity and the thinking that brings. It’s time to question existing assumptions and create the platform to not shut down ideas, but rather allow them to flourish. Its time to allow crazy ideas to take a first breath with a view to potentially breathing further life in to them. Diversity of thinking, of opinion, of ideas, of solutionising — this is the competitive advantage of the future, but only if we jump in with both feet and welcome with open arms the possibility of opportunity that may be created, as well as a willingness for things to be tested and to fail.
Not one of us alone has the answers.
When we work together we are smarter together.
When we work together we find new solutions.
When we work together we ideate, we innovate, we debate, we create, we disagree, we agree.
Step into the space of collaboration: lean out to embrace the opportunity that exists when diverse teams are built; amplify others; create the freedom to discuss; debate and ideate; a space where the strength of individual thought leadership, skills, expertise, and experience can be reinforced through working together.
The collaborative economy is a space where if we are authentic, play by rules of openness and transparency, and follow our passions, we have the opportunity to build collective intelligence, trust, and connection, and surprise and influence many.
Create divergent moments. Actively listen and collaborate. Feed the ideation machine.
Togetherness really can and does create the momentum of change.