How to Innovate Effectively

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Introduction - How to Innovate Effectively (for Managers)

Welcome to the course that can improve your life via creativity, and improve your business / organisation via creativity and innovation. Innovation is the most important driver of change in the 21st century and it impacts upon the lives of everyone. It cannot be ignored nor avoided; unless you go off grid and live in a hole somewhere in the Scottish Highlands. The pace of innovation is getting faster and faster, and its impact is rapidly spreading further and further.

This course will help you to: better understand creativity and innovation; help you to embrace its opportunities; and prepare you and your organisation for the effective application of innovation.

The modules of this three day course are shown below.

Note: This is three days of your study time. You can spread this over as many days as you like, but it is recommended that you aim to complete it within four weeks.

As you work through each module you will encounter quizzes so that you can check how well you are learning. At the end of each module there will be an assignment to test your understanding and/or allow what you have learnt to be applied within your organisation. You can ask for help if you need to. Completion of all the assignments results in you being awarded the course completion certificate.

M1: What is innovation?

This provides definitions for creativity and innovation; and clarifies the difference between them. Some amazing examples of innovation are included.

M2: The good, the bad and the ugly of innovation

This will open your eyes to the power and impact of innovation. It takes a comprehensive look at its impact from various perspectives including the benefits, risks, winners, losers, and what the future may bring. This is important because you will become aware of how innovation can benefit, and protect, you and your organisation. It also provides inspiration for you to consider the sustainability of the products and services in your organisation, and its long term survival. As a graduate of this course, it is hoped that you will both innovate effectively and play nicely. There are benefits if you do so.

M3: A generic innovation process

Some people, wrongly, think that innovation is all about uncoordinated, chaotic, creativity without any hint of a structured process. This teaches you that a process is definitely required, if you want to innovate effectively! A generic process is presented, which can support the following aspects of innovation: problem solving; solution finding; pursuing opportunities; creativity; ideas generation; discovery; research; designs; prototypes; evaluation; funding; research and development; IPR; beta testing; pilot projects; policy; objectives; planning; marketing; spin-offs; and incremental refinements.

M4: Optimising creativity, new ideas and discovery

This includes references to many well known techniques for boosting creativity: creative thinking; ideas generation and evaluation; discovery; and science. More importantly, you will learn modern techniques that go much further than techniques taught by other providers. Here you will learn about the limitations of traditional techniques and understand why you should adopt better techniques. You will learn about a new generic approach to creativity that is fit for the 21st century.

M5: Innovation process for Level 1: Departmental innovation

This looks at innovative changes to what a department produces and/or the way the department functions. For example: a department may buy in a new IT product and/or change some of its processes. The department may think this is innovative, but often the department is just adopting some aspect of best practice. For example, it may simply be copying what a competitor does. Nevertheless this can improve the effectiveness and efficiency of a department.

This includes an assignment to review your department.

M6: Innovation process for Level 2: Organisational innovation

This looks at a framework to support the innovation across all departments in the organisation, and at communication structures and systems to facilitate organisational innovation.

This includes an assignment to review your organisation.

M7: Innovation process for Level 3: Incremental product or service innovation

Here we look at what is required to develop a new version of an existing product or service, and introduce it into the marketplace.

This includes an assignment to review your products and services, and identify innovative opportunities for incremental improvement.

M8: Innovation process for Level 4: New product or service innovation

Here we consider radical innovation and the production of a completely new product or service that probably implements a new concept. It also considers dealing with "disruptive innovation", and "blue skies research".

M9: Identify your opportunities for innovation

Armed with both a generic innovation process and a modern approach to creativity, you will learn how to apply this to your workplace. This step can help to make your organisation fit for the 21st century.

M10: Management

This module includes units on the following.

Motivation and reward

Without motivation and reward, sooner or later, your staff will not be fully committed to pursuing the goals of the organisation. This highlights the importance of motivation and reward. It also suggests an innovative approach that genuinely rewards members of staff for their contributions, and builds the culture needed to sustain an innovative business in the 21st century.

Effective innovation policies

The simplest, yet most important, documents in any organisation should be the policy documents. This explains why and how.

Best practice versus innovation

A look at which is best, and a BP-I mix.

Environmental improvement and innovation

An exploration of what innovation can contribute to environmental improvement, and reduced costs.

Quality improvement and innovation

Using innovation to improve quality.

The roles of people

Rethinking the roles of staff and management.

Effective communications

How to communicate effectively, and become much more effective and efficient.

Effective innovation strategies

Should you have a separate strategy document for innovation, or should it be part of a corporate strategy document? This describes what is required in an innovation strategy and then helps you to explore if this should go into the corporate strategy document.

Secrets of success and "secret advantage XA"

Secrets to be revealed...

More: Online innovation and creativity training courses

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