5 ways to unlock the innovation potential in your employees


Employees are your greatest resource when it comes to digital innovation and digital strategy efforts. Here are 5 ways you can help your employees unleash their potential.

1. Make your workforce part of the process

Normally, employees are not open to change. In most cases, they are afraid that they will lose their jobs or become irrelevant. This is why you need to ensure that they participate fully in the process. One way to do this is to team them up in groups. Each group can work on an innovation idea and design a product. At the end of the exercise, you can reward the winners. This will make them feel like part of the process, and they will be more open to change.

2. Have clear and specific goals

To make innovation a reality, you need to have specific goals. Remember these goals will act as a guideline for your workforce. Broad and generic goals will not inspire innovation. Nonspecific statements will also not inspire confidence from investors. Take time to create vision and mission statements. Ensure that they capture the innovation process in its entirety and in a way that is understood by all stakeholders.

3. Give the innovation time

It is important to have timelines to achieve your innovation and digital strategy goals. However, you need to allow time for the workers to get on board. Realize that change is gradual, and do not rush the process. Innovation is an ongoing process that should be allowed time before results are realized. To demonstrate your commitment towards innovation, you can dedicate several hours during the day purposely for this. Your workforce should not feel pressured that they need to make time to come up with innovative ideas while still juggling other business operations.

4. Permit failure

There will be moments when you get it right and moments when you go wrong during the innovation process. As leadership, you must realize that failure is part of the process. This means that you need to allow for multiple failures before you all get it right. What you should focus on is learning from these mistakes and motivating the workforce to remain committed.

5. Make changes when necessary

As you work towards a digital strategy through business innovation, you will need to make changes. While most of your workforce may jump on board, there are those who will resist the process. You may have to restructure and bring in new personnel to realize your goals. When this change becomes necessary, you need to act.

To achieve business innovation, there needs to be synergy from all parties. You need to move as one team, and the above pointers will help you tap the potential in your workforce.