A New Perspective on Everyday Innovation

Aug 26, 2021 2 min read
A New Perspective on Everyday Innovation

Simply put, "everyday innovation" is about compound effect. Repeated efforts made over time and/or actions performed across multiple instances will magnify impact. And the future of designing that impact is creator-led.

The term "everyday innovation" has manifested itself in many ways, but the common threads that seem to tie all definitions together have been

  1. the importance of incremental changes over time,
  2. the need for sustainable conditions that support ongoing innovative thinking, and
  3. the significance of empowering change at all levels of leadership and across types of roles.
Simply put, "everyday innovation" is about compound effect. Repeated efforts made over time and/or actions performed across multiple instances will magnify impact.

Removing the part from the whole of the corporation, society, organization, etc., and focusing on the individual outside of their identified role, we see a unique opportunity to speak to self-led innovation. Whether the thinking is applied to social, community, scientific, corporate, political, familial, artistic, or another type of problem-solving, the genesis of these thoughts are from the individual.

This is not to discount collective and collaborative innovation – clearly, huge components of innovation are insight (derived in part from information and research), design of solutions, and execution– all of which benefit from multiple perspectives. However, an empowered and cultivated innovation process that starts at the level of self takes better account of one's own creative process, biases, ways of thinking and problem-solving, unique contributions to insight, skills to benefit execution, and sphere of influence.

Collectively taken, individual-led innovation practices can create a wider array of perspectives across functions of innovation, as well as across areas to which it is applied. We often seek insight from experts and direct stakeholders in the value chain without considering possibilities from outside (but still likely affected) resources.

In this era of the Creator Economy (and related Passion Economy), the impact of the individual on social and economic concerns has been greatly amplified through both increasingly influential social media platforms and technological advances that support a lower barrier to entry for most creators. In a follow-up piece, I will expand on this evolution and more intentionally define who is a "creator," but (spoiler alert) we all likely occupy or can occupy the definition quite easily.

It's now more important than ever that individuals are armed with the tools and practices that match the value of their potential impact. And, these resources must not only reflect innovation theories and practices for organizational environments, but also include information that addresses the self-development, cognitive science, life design, identity, personal skills, and other individualized growth areas needed to create and influence positive change.

Everyday Innovation is inextricably tied to creator-led innovation.

I look forward to bringing this perspective into existing and new conversations on innovation and providing resources for individuals that inspire and empower their journey in designing their own unique approaches to Everyday Innovation.

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