Water Cooler Talk: Why Innovation and Creativity Are Key for Businesses in 2015
Business Solutions In business, we hear the word innovation on a daily basis. But what does innovation look like in the office? And what is it doing to your bottom line?
Mediaplanet: How can innovative offices promote a creative and productive environment?
Brett Trusko: I find that when an office has high social and innovative interactions, they generally have higher productivity. Productivity comes from enjoying what you are doing and innovative offices tend to excel at making the work experience more bearable, and make people feel that they are truly contributing in a meaningful way, than in a traditional work environment. When it comes to productivity and innovative offices there is nearly always a positive correlation.
Scott Chambers: Innovative offices can help promote a productive and creative environment in many ways. First, by incorporating a variety of workspaces, with a variety of layouts, can create different places for someone to work depending upon both their mood and the type of work they are trying to accomplish. Collaborative spaces allow for teams to work together to create results that are greater than the sum of all of the individuals. Private space allows for someone that wants some “alone time” to focus their thoughts and complete the task at hand in a way in which minimizes distractions. Quiet time space allows for relaxation and a way to re-charge one’s batteries to tackle the next challenge that lies ahead. A collection of innovative offices allows individuals to move from place to place in order to maximize their productivity.
MP: What role does innovation play in success?
BT: Success in innovation is more than just working hard; it is communicating and delivering in a way that your partners, employers, government, etc. can understand, process and use. Innovation is more than just ‘creative’ as is the misperception; it is an actual science with measurable metrics and outputs—invaluable to those applying it.
"Innovation is more than just ‘creative’ as is the misperception; it is an actual science with measurable metrics and outputs—invaluable to those applying it."
SC: Innovation in the office allows for employees and freelancers alike to maximize their potential. The ability to have a variety of environments depending upon the type of work or the mood of the worker can only maximize the chance to get the most out of their abilities, which in turn only helps both the team and the individual to be as successful as possible.
MP: In your opinion, how can employers identify innovators on their own teams or in the market?
BT: The best way to identify innovators in your organization is to encourage dialogue. Actively foster people to contribute their unique ideas and perspectives, both to existing initiatives and to propose new. What stymies innovation is that in many companies, the leaders believe they have enough innovative ideas for the entire company—and don’t truly seek or listen to dialogue and input from others. So, while he may cultivate an incredible environment for innovation, leadership is the problem because they are not actively seeking, or receptive to the opportunities before them.
SC: Employers can identify innovators on their own teams or on the market by looking for people that are doing things that seem “odd” when compared to the “norm.” They can also look for people that are not afraid to do things differently. Innovation is the result of taking a risk and doing things in new ways that often times seems impossible or ridiculous to the average person. They are the risk takers, the people that make a difference in the way we do things in the world.