There is often a better and easier way to get something done. This is especially true when it involves a contribution from a number of people. If it could be done faster or cheaper and better, why then do we not work to innovate for a better solution?
Innovation requires one to step forward in proposing a new theory of how something could be improved upon. To do so requires taking a risk.
If you are off the mark with your innovative theory:
- you may look foolish
- you may waste the time of others
- you may offend the person that designed the current way
- you may alter or eliminate the contribution required of others
- you may work with a group of followers that like it just how it is
- you may upset your boss if they hadn’t suggested the new way
- you may influence others to add to the theory from what was learned
For these reasons, the culture of an organization or team will lean towards one of these two statuses. 1) sustained comfort or 2) continuous learning.
Comfort requires and even enforces all staying with what they have always done. The “leader” prefers it this way and conditions others to do the same.
Continuous learning requires and reinforces a curiosity to find a way to innovate and adapt within the realities of the work. The leader prefers and respects others for it to be this way and conditions others to do the same.
Regardless of your job title or your pay level, be a leader. Create a culture of continual learning. Learn and apply what you are learning.
“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” — Steve Jobs —