In our last blog, we described why innovation is transformational, and why, at this moment in time, it is more important than ever to innovate. To take advantage of living in a globalised world, which is interconnected through technologies and values and within an interrelated structure of reality. We stated that innovation-led change and growth are absolutely critical and that people need to be empowered to adapt, connect and collaborate in new ways. To kickstart change in agile, constructive, equitable, and sustainable ways to innovate in uncertain times.
Yet, our research and experience at ImagineNation™ over the past 10 years has revealed that many governments, communities, organisations, teams, and leaders, feel somewhat – but not very – confident in their readiness, competence, and capacity to change and innovate in a world of unknowns.
Six strategies to kickstart change and innovate in uncertain times
To help build this confidence we have identified six key strategies and the key first steps to focus your attention, kickstart change, and drive and execute your change and innovation initiatives, to survive, thrive, and flourish in uncertain times.
- Strategy #1
HELP PEOPLE TO RECOVER FROM THE CRISIS
FLOW WITH AND RESOLVE PEOPLE’S FEARS, CONFUSION, AND INERTIA
- Be empathic and compassionate in allowing, accepting, and acknowledging where people are at – it’s OK to not be OK – listen deeply, hear their pain, acknowledge their traumas, and demonstrate care.
- Enable people to re-connect and re-belong – explore connections.
- Courageously, playfully and safely challenge people’s habitual default patterns, comfort zones, inertia and complacency, and fears around returning to the office.
- Strategy #2
HELP PEOPLE RECONNECT AND REBALANCE
HELP PEOPLE MANAGE THEIR EXHAUSTION, ANXIETY, AND BURNOUT
- Help people hit their pause buttons, retreat and reflect on how they are feeling and thinking, and be grounded, mindful, and present-box breathing.
- Help people remove distractions to re-focus their attention – device, desk, and internet management.
- Help people develop disciplines, and daily practices to be well and initiate re-balancing – be intentional.
- Strategy #3
TEACH PEOPLE TO TOLERATE UNCERTAINTY
HELP PEOPLE EVOLVE, ADAPT AND BE AGILE AND RESILIENT
- Help people unlearn old mental models, mindsets, and behaviours that make them reactive, fearful, and reactive.
- Help people relearn new 21st-century mindsets, behaviours, and skills to be proactive, agile (act in an instant), and resilient (bounce back from adversity).
- Help people learn how to adapt and be flexible.
- Help people develop their foresight to re-envision their future.
- Strategy #4
PLAN TO INNOVATE TO GROW AND THRIVE
TEACH PEOPLE HOW TO MAKE SENSE OF INNOVATION
- Help people understand that innovation is the water of life.
- Help people understand “why” innovation is important to survive/thrive and sustain all life.
- Creating a common understanding, language, and shared purpose for innovation-led change.
- Align people’s mindsets, behaviours, and skills, develop and embed new habits.
- Strategy #5
GIVE PEOPLE THE SPACE AND TIME TO INNOVATE TO GROW AND THRIVE
IMAGINE, CREATE, AND COLLABORATE
- Encourage people to go mind wandering, connect with nature, play, and improvise.
- Help people safely evoke, provoke and create new ideas and deliver breakthrough solutions.
- Empower people to break down silos and use creative tension to maximize differences and diversity to see and solve problems creatively.
- Support people to collaborate, and team across functions, geographies, and mediums.
PLAN TO INNOVATE TO GROW AND THRIVE
EXPERIMENT BY FAILING FAST TO LEARN QUICKLY
- Build safety, permission, and an environment where people feel safe to challenge kindly, make mistakes and are trusted and allowed to experiment.
- Reframe failure as an opportunity to learn quickly.
- Build rigorous risk management and planning processes.
Taking the first steps to change and innovate in 2023
Embracing a range of new and different strategic and systemic approaches governments, communities, organisations, teams, and leader organisations can successfully kickstart change and innovate in uncertain times.
By using this moment in time to choose to refuse to walk backward and sleepwalk through life, by simply committing to take the first baby steps in allowing and enabling people to pause, retreat, reflect and:
- Recover from the effects of working mostly alone, from home, and online.
- Re-balance work and home lives through reconnection and resolving loneliness and rebuilding a sense of belonging.
- Know how to tolerate uncertainty and become resilient and adaptive.
- Reimagine and refocus a more energising, compelling, and sustainable future.
- Reinvent themselves, their professions, business practices, and teams in meaningful and purposeful ways.
We can then confidently, meaningfully, and purposefully energetically engage and enroll people, mobilise and harness their collective genius, to innovate in uncertain times in ways that add value to the quality of people’s lives in ways they appreciate and cherish.
To kickstart changes that contribute effectively to global stability, security, connectedness, and sustainability in the current decade of transformation and disruption.
Register for our free masterclass on Wednesday, 1st February, and Thursday, 2nd February, where we will explore why it is more important than ever to innovate in 2023 and how to develop and apply the six key strategies – to kickstart change and innovate in uncertain times, in your team, organisation, and business practice.
Find out more about our work at ImagineNation™
Find out about our collective, learning products and tools, including The Coach for Innovators, Leaders, and Teams Certified Program, presented by Janet Sernack, is a collaborative, intimate, and deeply personalized innovation coaching and learning program, supported by a global group of peers over 9-weeks, starting Tuesday, February 14, 2023.
It is a blended and transformational change and learning program that will give you a deep understanding of the language, principles, and applications of an ecosystem focus, human-centric approach, and emergent structure (Theory U) to innovation, and upskill people and teams and develop their future fitness, within your unique innovation context. Find out more about our products and tools.