Many managers are constantly looking for people who are energetic, dynamic, full of ideas and ready to implement them outside the company. At the same time, they do not notice that they already have such people in their team; they just need conditions for development. Unfortunately, few managers are ready to take responsibility for creating an environment where people will flourish. Of course, it is not an easy task, but by following a few principles described by Harvard Business Review, anyone can create such an environment.
Hire people who are committed to your company’s mission
It often happens that a seemingly good employee shows absolutely no creative qualities in the company. But as soon as he changes the field of activity, he achieves significant results. This does not mean that the employee is bad. It means that person is more interested in a new business than in the business your company is engaged in. Researchers have long established that intrinsic motivation is a major component of what makes people creative.
The biggest misconception about innovative people is that they are sputtering with ideas. They are not. It is about solving problems. So the first step to building an innovative team is to hire people who are interested in the issues and problems you need to solve. If there is a true commitment to a shared mission on the team, the ideas will come.
Maintain psychological safety
In 2012, Google conducted a huge research project codenamed Project Aristotle. The goal of the project was to identify factors that are inherent to successful teams. Researchers took into account all possible aspects of interaction between people and the company. It was found that the greatest impact on the effectiveness of the team was psychological safety, or the ability of each team member to express his or her ideas without fear of reprisal or reproach. The same conclusion was reached by Harvard University professor Amy Edmondson, who established the importance of psychological safety in contexts ranging from medical teams to office furniture manufacturers. The professor found that psychological safety not only improves the atmosphere, but also increases the ability to learn and reduces the tendency to make mistakes.
Another study conducted by researchers at MIT and Carnegie Mellon found that teams in which people talk in roughly equal amounts are far superior to those in which one or two people dominate the conversation.
Many managers hire people who look like themselves. This can be good for building camaraderie and comfort, but it is not the best environment for problem solving. Various studies have shown that teams with different people are much smarter, more creative, and more scrupulous about the facts.
When you take on a team of the same type of people, you limit the number of solutions you can explore. At best, you will come up with fewer ideas, and at worst you risk creating an atmosphere in which common biases and norms prevail.
Instead of trying to create a comfortable environment for yourself, you should create an environment in which people can expect a different perspective and a different point of view. The challenge for managers is to create an environment that is both diverse and psychologically safe. Of course, great diversity can lead to discomfort, great innovative teams learn to work constructively in this state of tension employee computer usage is a key indicator for evalute employee efifciency.
You don’t need the best people – you need the best teams. The problems we face today are too complex to be solved by a lone genius working in isolation. That’s why the best innovators tend to be knowledge disseminators that are embedded in networks. In this way, they gain access to a powerful stream of collective energy that can solve almost any problem.
To build a truly innovative team, you need not just one “perfect innovative” person, but people who can collaborate, listen, and create strong networks. Your company definitely has such people. Find them and develop them.