The four guiding philosophies that imbue employees with the courage to try out new ideas:
- innovation is everyone's job
- disruptive innovation is part of our innovation portfolio
- deploy lots of small, properly organized innovation project teams
- take smart risks in the pursuit of innovation
People are a huge part of what make innovation successful, and the most innovative companies in the world have leaders who are themselves innovators and who are hiring "discovery-driven" people. The combination of these people leads to "innovation synergies" as people learn from and support each other. Innovative companies hire and staff teams with people who possess different types of expertise so that the team or organization can view and solve problems from very wide angles. Reflecting on our Design Thinking team we are extremely different: two of us work in elementary, one in middle school and three in high school. We have on our team an elementary homeroom teacher, two tech coordinators, a scientist, an artist and a social studies/philosopher. We have 3 men and 3 women. We have 3 Americans, 1 Canadian, 1 Australian and 1 Brit. We have single people, married people, divorced people, people with children at school, people with adult children who have left school and people with no children. What we share is the courage to innovate and to make our school the best it can be. In July we're off to the Henry Ford Learning Institute in Detroit to do a Design Thinking workshop. I'm really looking forward to working in this team.