9 ideas for a new idea system

August 11, 2014       The NonProfit Times      

They’re like movie monsters. Everyone fears them, fights them, tries to prevent them from happening, but they keep cropping up anyway. They’re new ideas. No matter how hard people fight them, they’ll keep coming back.

In their book “The Idea-Driven Organization,” Alan G. Robinson and Dean M. Schroeder actually embrace the concept of new ideas. Go figure.

More than that, they offer a new idea: the idea system. This sounds good, but is far from quick and easy. It is much more than layering a collection and evaluation process on top of the existing organization. Done correctly, however, a high-performance idea system can be put into place and can yield results.

They write that such a thing is possible in nine steps:

Step 1. Ensure the leadership’s long-term commitment to the new idea system.

Step 2. Form and train the team that will design and implement the system.

Step 3. Assess the organization from an idea management perspective.

Step 4. Design the idea system.

Step 5. Start correcting misalignments.

Step 6. Conduct a pilot test.

Step 7. Assess the pilot results, make adjustments and prepare for the launch.

Step 8. Roll out the system organization-wide.

Step 9. Continue to improve the system.

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