by Jorge Zavala
More and more we listen everywhere that we need to change the way we do business, how we learn, and how make new products or services because more people is creating new ideas and transforming the way we live.
We have examples that start from companies like PayPal that introduce some time ago new ways of payments, then we are using every day our smartphone to get access to the internet, organize our lives, and take pictures and videos. Latter other companies like Google, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter changed the way we get information and how we communicate among others. Today, we are making more calls thru WhatsApp, Skype, Google Hangouts and Facebook that dialing a number over the traditional phone system. Just the last round of changes is now using Uber to move from one place to other, make reservations in Airbnb or watching movies and programs using NetFlix.
At the end, everything is going digital and everything operates in a new way. Then a new trend is to build how we work, using technology as the support but with ideas, and process and new interactive way of doing things.
Under this circumstances, you need to find a new way of working your self, you need to transform your mindset to in line with the new world that we face today. Here it comes a good question what is your Mindset to achieve everything you want to do. In this moment you find out that the world is changing so fast that you need to learn a lot of new things, adapt to much situations that you can image and transform your habits to work in a multidimensional space that ask to keep your attention switching from the social media to writing emails, to elaborate a proposal and get ideas from multiple sources. On top of all this elements, you need to develop or reinforce some skills to create new things, asking for taking higher levels of risk, manage uncertainty, improve the negotiations and public speaking skill and much more of this skills.
In order to start moving, reduce the stress and improve in a paced mode, you have the choice to work in your Minimal Viable Mindset that is the starting point and with the time, learning experience and motivation you can define your Transformation Journey to reach higher levels. It is a never end journey that will keep moving every day for you. Using equivalence to how you navigate in the streets, using GPS to move around, you will need to have your GPS for learning calculating all the time how you can reach your next goal.
Hidden in this proposal is a very complex scenario that you need to identify yourself to understand how very creative and successful people operate inside. The people in the leadership position work in two planes at the same time. One plane is to how to move from Point A to Point B, and the other plane is how you build your support system to keep managing the changing environment to keep yourself or your company reinventing all the time.
This second plane is complex for several reasons:
- It is not a one size fit all. Each person or company needs to make its own innovation path, creating its own environment that we will call the Innovation Lab. This imply that there is not a way that you order your Innovation Lab and you start using it like when you buy a computer or a word processor.
- The configuration of your Innovation Labs has to be customized all the time, using new skills, learning new subjects, use a given set of tools or solve the specific problem that you are working today.
- You want to use the learning experience and even train people to use what you have learned or what you have built. It is very complex to do two things at the same time: learning and managing your projects at the same time that working in doing the project. Usually, your capability is focus in the first plane to the most important and rewarded activity, which is doing what is in your regular activity. The innovations usually require more effort, resources and levels of concentrations. Then you leave aside this part. It is the reason why a place like Silicon Valley is so highly innovative. Is not because the people work in a so open environment that the people learn from each other and the cultural environment replace the way of documenting a lot of these things. Despite of this environment, other people is taking time to create and document new methods of work, that is why we can see now Lean Startup, Design Thinking, and lot of other tools to help people been more efficient while they are innovating.
Having this complex two level situation inside you it’s time to seat back an look around to explore how you can develop this knowledge to be highly innovative at the time that you can produce results. It is so common that people that are involved in creating the innovation environment leave it on the side to keep doing what is their job that is recognized as important for you or your company.
Let me tell you, that innovation is required every day more and more, and then it is your opportunity to build your Minimum Viable Mindset. You need to focus in a set of actions to achieve your double goal.
Lets set that your are convinced that today your company has a tremendous opportunity to grow and develop new products, then the question is what do you need to do in order than this potential is achieved?
There is a set of elements that you need to have minimum level of fulfillment each one:
- Set the goal that you want to achieve
- Allocate resources
- Perform Ideation and Experimentation
- Discover needs and capabilities
- Process Insights acquired during discover
- Build Prototypes
- Develop a MVP or MVS
- Learn how the people adopt your ideas and Scale them to reach broad markets.
The process is very similar to the one used for investors and startups to develop new ventures. The first journey for you is to be aware of how this process works. You will need it as your support system, at the same time that the first project executed under this framework will take advantage of it. The problem in your mind is that you are running two concurrent process interleaved that make very complex to see where you are in one side and one you are in the other side. When you are creating this infrastructure for the very first time, you are learning thing that you do not know how to use and is very hard to develop them at the same time that you are using it.
Then the goal in this stage is that you identify that creating an environment for innovation and executing innovate based projects are two different situations, that require to be done at the same time when you are starting to do it.
You are not crazy to just need to find how to work two complex situations at the same time.