Innovation for a Purpose

Glenn Tecker

How we approach innovation is important. We believe that innovating for a purpose is superior to sifting sand in a box in search of something to innovate. When an association begins by defining innovation as “a change that makes something better,” it points to places to look for meaningful opportunities. It also helps clarify what “positive change” would accomplish by describing “how the relevant world would be different in a better way.”

Successful Innovation

We find that the most frequently successful sources of innovation and positive change include:

  1. process analysis
  2. market research
  3. program evaluation
  4. failed experiments and
  5. underutilized offers

Unsuccessful Innovation

We also find that the most frequently unsuccessful sources of targets for innovation or positive change are:

  1. benchmarking against what is already in practice elsewhere
  2. books or speakers that provoke angst without offering a solution or
  3. a loud voice attending to a burr only under their own the saddle or a self-indulgent bug located elsewhere in their anatomy

Innovation Team

We also find that the composition of an innovation team is critical to its success. Our experience suggests that the most effective teams are convened when prospective membership is vetted in three steps:
Step 1: Vet for appropriate skill sets to promote good thinking and team work;
Step 2: Vet for expertise and experience related to the topic at hand to promote sound advice and informed suggestions;
Step 3: Vet for representativeness and diversity of perspectives to promote creativity and support.

Read Similar Blog Posts

Read more posts about Visioning

About the Author

Glenn Tecker

Glenn is a Principal Consultant, Chairman and Co-CEO of Tecker International. He has served in an executive capacity with business, public agencies, and non-profit organizations. Glenn is widely acknowledged as one of the world's foremost experts on leadership and strategy.