Why Your Innovation Story Matters

Posted

by Aman Hashim on April 03, 2018 12 00

If you type in the word “innovation” into any search engine, you’re more than likely to get over 30 pages of results. Whether it’s the latest white paper from a think tank or information about innovation incubator programs, there’s plenty out there on the topic.

So where does your innovation story fit into all of this? And why does it even matter? Well, there’s plenty of reasons, but in general, we’ve found that these top three reasons are what drives innovation at successful organizations. Take a look and let us know how you’re telling your innovation story in the comments below!

It drives company culture

Yes, that’s right. Company culture isn’t something that should be saved for interviews with the HR manager when recruiting your latest talent. It is something that is a daily, living element of your organization.

Developing and honing a culture that is forward-thinking, innovative, and exciting to job seekers and employees alike doesn’t happen overnight. But continuing to tell your story through company initiatives and of course, the often forgotten mission statement, are important for keeping that spirit of creativity alive. The human resource and recruiting experts at Randstad share this advice: “Unfortunately, even if you are working on some of the most innovative and exciting technologies, if job seekers perceive your company as staid or having an unstimulating workplace, you’ll find yourself at a huge disadvantage in hiring the best talent. Just because you have a widely respected consumer brand doesn’t mean that your organization is perceived as a great place to work.”

Your innovation story is just as important to your shareholders as it is to your potential new recruits. Recruiting the right members of your organization is an important part of your innovation story, now and as the organization continues to evolve.

Benchmark for progress

Speaking of evolution, as your organization grows and changes with different initiatives, products, and campaigns, you’ll want to use your story as a way to gauge how far you’ve come.

In an age when everyone wants to “disrupt the industry” and rush to the market with the latest gadget, it’s important to remember that sometimes innovation starts small. A recent article by Fast Company reminds us “Innovation is about solving people’s problems in a way that’s meaningful to them in the context of their lives. It’s about making life better for people...however they define what ‘better’ means.” The article highlights a success story from Pampers diaper company. What was initially thought of as a groundbreaking innovation, which was “more absorbent diapers”, actually wasn’t solving moms’ problems, but creating new ones. Once the company realized what mattered to moms, they developed a new product and campaign to bring to market an innovation that truly helped them in their daily lives.

Using your innovation success stories as benchmarks for how far you’ve come as a company, and to remind your team of some of the smaller wins that have kept your organization thriving are all part of the story that inspires everyone to keep working towards those company goals.

The story is your brand

We talked a bit about the importance of sharing your innovation successes with recruits, keeping the story alive with current employees, now how about the public? Well quite simply, your innovation story is your brand. While it may look different to these three groups, you’ll still want to be seen as an innovation hub to all.

A great example of how this innovation storytelling is done right is with the Mayo Clinic. A non-profit center known for medical education and groundbreaking research, the Center for Innovation at the Mayo Clinic is branding itself as a transformer and forerunner in the healthcare arena. With their on-site tours and roundtables open to the public, their participation in symposiums around the U.S., and an active social media presence, the Mayo Clinic “takes innovation out of the clinic, on the road and into other medical practices and learning environments.” Telling your story to the public reinforces your brand image as an innovator, and positions you for success in the years to come.

So what’s your innovation story? To get started on learning more about developing an innovation ecosystem and beginning your story, email me at aman@skipso.com or contact us at SkipsoLabs today.