18 Elements to Spark Innovation

One of the reasons why large companies like to work with small companies such as mine, Damarque, is because we breathe and live a ‘startup culture’, innovation.  Benefits are an entrepreneurial spirit within a larger, often more bureaucratic one, lean mindset, only doing that what is neccessary.

Howard Tiersky, President and Founder of Moving Interactive, gave his three ingredients in an article on CEO.com:

1. Focused Objective

This is the spark of innovation. The human mind is an incredible problem-solving machine, and it works best when given a very clear and precise goal. Defining the right objective for your innovation team to churn on is the first step to empowering them.

2. Information

Relevant information is the fuel of innovation. Our doorknob team hopefully includes people armed with personal experience in the doorknob biz. Still, collecting additional information and making it easy for the team to organize and internalize such is key.

3. Freedom

Freedom is the oxygen of innovation. In daily “business as usual,” a variety of things that hold us back, suppressing the natural release of our latent creativity just as lack of oxygen snuffs out a campfire.

Read his full elaborations on the three innovation components here.

I think there’s a fourth component, which is at the basis of the three abovementioned components:

4. Unique combinations

Schumpeter said that entrepreneurship can be defined as an art or science of innovation and risk taking for profit in the business, the quality being an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurship refers to taking out new and unique combinations. Accelerating this by connecting and bringing people together from different background is a great way. It are these unique combinations that can unlock creativity and innovation.

One of the most important unique combinations at Damarque is for instance, team, complementary skills and capabilities. This works out fantastic. First of all because we can stay lean, but we’re also able to tackle a challenge from multiple perspectives, these ‘clashes’ ignite creativity and innovation.

The 14 ways to spark innovation according to InnovationExcellence are:

  1. Follow Your Fascination
  2. Immerse
  3. Tolerate Ambiguity
  4. Make New Connections
  5. Fantasize
  6. Define The Right Challenge
  7. Listen To Your Subconscious
  8. Take A Break
  9. Notice And Challenge Patterns And Trends
  10. Hang Out With A Diverse Group Of People
  11. Brainstorm
  12. Look For Happy Accidents
  13. Use Creative Thinking Techniques
  14. Suspend Logic

What other elements that are not mentioned here do you think spark innovation?