Innovation is not magic, it follows a process.  Creativity requires a different process from that needed to bring a new innovation to market.  The innovation process is a change process and has to be loose in the creative phase and tight in the execution phase.

Innovation and Creativity

reativity is the process of producing new ideas, while the innovation process addresses creating and applying these ideas. In the context of an organization, the term innovation process refers to the entire process by which people generate new ideas and convert them into commercial products and practices. Creativity and Innovation result from a high degree of people involvement and creates a higher sense of personal fulfillment.


Creativity needs Freedom

The nature of the contribution that people make to the innovation process changes through the process. In fact it is in itself a change process. In the early creative phase of innovation, you must allow a high degree of freedom, encourage exploration and allow frequent failure. "Fail early" is the innovator’s mantra. Allowing failure is a counterintuitive behavior for the business thinker.

Use the self-assessment tool on this website

Ensure you have plenty of creators and connectors in this creative phase. Another advantage of using the tool is that it helps people on the team better understand one another’s strengths.

In the creative phase, you need diversity and disruption.

That’s how you get the wild ideas. In these early stages of creativity, you should allow social time. The more analytical people may think this is being lazy, but this early socializing is when you build trust, even though you also have diversity and disruption. There will be those who want you to tell you what the final answer will look like, but you must tell them bluntly that you have no idea because if you did know, you would not be innovating.

After being creative decisions must be made

Which ideas have the best long-term return on investment, are the most radical and hardest to copy, and which ideas can get to market quickest. You will probably narrow down two, at most three, choices and now the game changes. The tough task is behavior change. Gone is the loose behavior. The new reality is about being focused and fast. You must monitor this behavior change closely. 

The Execution Phase

some of your creative folks will leave the team, and you will start to engage customers, sales and operations people. The good news for the team is that it will have naturally morphed from a dispersed network into a closed network as people got to know and trust one another. Closed networks move fast. Make sure any new team members are now properly integrated into the team. Innovation is finally executed when you have converted that early winning idea into a working solution and delivered that solution to the user.