How to evolve innovation capacity in the workplace

Many organizations are having to rethink how to evolve innovation in the workplace given the trend towards hybrid and remote work. In this blog we share highlights from a recent Executive Council meeting that examined evolving innovation capacity.

                       team change development growthmindset

How to evolve innovation capacity in the workplace


I had the pleasure recently of designing and facilitating the Conference Board’s Executive Council of Innovation and Commercialization meeting.


The theme was Evolving Innovation Capacity and it asked members to answer this question:


How does your organization support employees in using their knowledge, skills and decision-making to explore and exploit ideas?


The goals of the meeting were to leverage the experience of experts and guide members to:

  • DISCUSS how organizations are evolving innovation capacity.
  • LEARN lessons gleaned from Canada’s innovation and skills plan.
  • IDENTIFY the essentials to building innovation capacity.
  • EXPLORE agile ways of working to solve problems in new ways.

We had the opportunity to hear leading edge research, learn from real life case studies and benefit from peer learning.


Is your organization too scared to innovate?


Our first speaker asked: Is your organization too scared to innovate? And shared new research about the state of global corporate innovation.


Did you know that in organizations that view themselves as average innovators the top 3 fears employees and leaders share around engaging in innovation are:


  1. Fear of negative impact on career
  2. Fear of uncertain outcomes
  3. Fear of criticism

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Not surprisingly, organizations that view themselves as highly innovative were far less fearful.


Building innovation capacity in hybrid work environments


Our second speaker connected innovation to collaboration and raised concerns about how organizations are underestimating the change management component of moving to hybrid work.


In doing so he challenged the perception that organizations experienced productivity gains in their move to work from home during the pandemic.


His research data shows that while individuals think they’re doing well and are highly productive in remote work, organizations don’t understand the impact on teams and across functions.


In reality, organizations experienced decreases in collaboration and innovation during the pandemic.

And in their move to hybrid work, there is less need to focus on when people will be at work and more need to focus on how to recapture, re-envision and augment the collaboration and innovation that was lost.


Canada’s Innovation Plan


Our final speakers are well-known in the Canadian innovation landscape, having shaped Canada’s Innovation Plan in 2015 and written subsequent report on how to build on that plan in a post COVID world.


Council members who had input to the original plan in 2015 were anxious to learn where we improved and what still needs to be done and enjoyed the opportunity to ask many questions.


Here are some key takeaways from the meeting:


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           key takeaways - blog_2

Credit: Conference Board of Canada, Council of Innovation and Commercialization Member


How does your organization support employees in using their knowledge, skills and decision-making to explore and exploit ideas?


Drop me a line in comments.


Need help evolving innovation capacity in your organization?


Check out these blogs:


How to Develop an Innovation Strategy        How to Be Innovative at Work

how-to-develop-an-innovation-strategy-blog-1080x675     how to be innovative blog iStock-1194677324


How to Develop Innovation Skills

Innovation Skills iStock-954326592




In a spin about evolving innovation capacity on your team?


Book a strategy call to give you clarity on your next steps.

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About BridgePoint Effect
BridgePoint Effect is a boutique consulting firm with a bold vision to transform the way leaders and their teams collaborate, innovate, and deliver outstanding results.

We help frustrated leaders who know their teams can achieve more. 

We offer a framework, practical toolkit and high calibre coaching that gives you the structure, skills and support needed to build an effective team.

Let's get your team achieving more than you ever thought possible.



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