How YOU Can Foster Innovation

How YOU Can Foster Innovation

Lack of innovation plagues most healthcare organizations.

For years, many leaders believed that the patients and residents they serve have no choice but to access the services they provide. They will come in their time of need, whether they like it or not, because they have to…so why change?But that mentality seems to be changing.  More and more I am hearing people talk about the need for innovation in healthcare.

Author Roberta Verganti describes two types of innovation:

  • Innovation in Technology:  new items that are better at accomplishing current tasks or taking on new tasks.
  • Innovation in Meaning:  new and different experiences that people have that completely change how or why they do things.

Even Google’s Venture Capital Unit says they’re “concerned that there isn’t enough innovation, disruption and entrepreneurs attracted to this really important area of health care.”

A 3d image of four lamps and one shining luminescent lamp.

So what does this mean for YOU?

While Google might not be investing in your ideas, you can nurture a culture of innovation to transform the experiences of those who need your services.

The best way to do this?Foster an innovation culture, one that welcomes and encourages everyone in the organization to share his or her ideas.

Set up a space where people can create…without fear of being judged!

  • Encourage Outlandish Ideas:  Good ideas often come from wacky ones that are not restrained by budget, regulations, etc.
  • Try for Lots of Ideas:  The more ideas, the more likely you will stumble upon the one that works!
  • Listen Respectfully:  Fully listening to the ideas of others will spark more of your own and allow you to build upon the ideas of others as well.
  • Stay on Topic:  Make sure the objective is clear so that your group doesn’t veer too far off topic.

It’s great to have a “devil’s advocate” to share the reasons something won’t work. It doesn’t help anyone to be surrounded by “yes men”. But what about someone playing the opposite role? Don’t forget the role of optimistic, enthusiastic supporter is just as important!


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