Discover how SAVIA Leadership™ used Whole Brain® Thinking to revolutionize leadership and management practices at Upright (Formerly Fund That Flip).
Creativity and innovation are skills every organization needs to thrive in a rapidly changing business environment. By empowering employees to pursue innovation at work collaboratively, they’ll introduce new ideas, products, and services that help you excel even in the most competitive markets.
Cognitive diversity, which refers to differences in how people think, process information, and make decisions, can be a powerful method of instilling creativity, encouraging innovation, and managing change. Teams and organizations that embrace cognitive diversity typically improve their collaboration, thinking, and performance.
But in times of uncertainty and change, organizations can struggle to work together or adapt to change. And teams that don’t communicate well or embrace each other’s unique abilities will struggle to be creative or innovative. In today’s fast-moving world, it’s not enough to hire talent. You need to help that talent work better together.
What Prevents Teams From Being Creative and Innovative at Work?
Leading organizations can be obsessed with innovation, even creating dedicated teams or incubators for innovation. And yet so many struggle to generate, develop, or capitalize on good ideas. Similarly, large organizations are quick to engage in change management yet need help to complete these transformations and deliver lasting benefits.
These common roadblocks can keep organizations from fulfilling their potential.
Communication is foundational to sparking creativity, driving innovation, and managing change. Without good communication, pairs and teams struggle to collaborate effectively on new ideas or work together to develop innovative solutions to problems.
Poor communication erodes trust between departments, teams, or individuals. Without trust, teams may not feel comfortable brainstorming ideas or collaborating on projects. Additionally, poor communication creates confusion, whether it’s about the details of an idea or someone’s responsibility during a transformation project. This can cause needless mistakes and prevent employees from taking the initiative or proposing new ideas.
Fear of Failure
When it comes to creativity and innovation, fear of failure can prevent great ideas from ever being shared, much less developed. Employees may feel like their ideas aren’t good enough or they aren’t qualified to make suggestions. This can lead to them not taking risks and staying in their comfort zone.
Your workplace culture can contribute to employee fear of failure. If employees think they’ll be penalized for suggesting new ideas or taking the lead on change projects, they’ll remain passive. Worst still, employees might become discouraged and disengaged in everyday work because their ideas aren’t valued.
Low Employee Engagement
When employees are not engaged, they’re less likely to contribute new ideas or help the organization make necessary changes — and less likely even to be thinking creatively. Disengaged employees don’t feel invested enough to disrupt the status quo. Because they have a reduced sense of ownership and purpose, these employees are less willing to step up for their teammates or employer.
How Whole Brain® Thinking Unlocks Team Creativity
Herrmann’s talent platform and Whole Brain® Thinking empower leaders to harness their team members’ creativity and innovation at work. Here are three ways our approach generates results.
Identify Untapped Creative Potential
Whole Brain® Thinking is a powerful framework for team leaders looking to promote diversity of thought within their teams and encourage employees to embrace each other’s different thinking preferences. When leaders practice cognitive diversity, they can identify hidden potential within their teams. Everyone benefits: Organizations get better ideas, and employees share, learn, and grow together through improved collaboration and better thinking.
By understanding each team member’s thinking preferences using the Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument® (HBDI®) and Whole Brain® Thinking, you can assess your team’s overall cognitive diversity and identify blindspots. This allows you to curate highly effective teams that push the envelope on creativity and embrace change, even when it’s uncomfortable.
A broad view of your team’s cognitive diversity also highlights how and when team members are most creative — and where they might have the most significant impact.
Promote a Culture of Experimentation
A culture of experimentation is an organizational mindset that encourages teams to take risks and test ideas to identify the best possible solutions. Promoting a culture of experimentation is essential for fostering creativity and innovation.
Whole Brain® Thinking helps create an inclusive culture that encourages diverse perspectives and opinions, which can lead to more creative ideas and solutions. When team members understand that the culture values cognitive differences and new perspectives, they’ll feel more comfortable sharing their ideas, giving constructive feedback, and experimenting with new concepts.
Team leaders can fuel this creativity by creating spaces where team members can openly share, discuss, and develop their ideas.
Build Innovation Into the Flow of Work
Herrmann’s talent platform helps managers optimize internal workflows to reflect diverse thinking. Delivering conversation prompts or walkarounds in the flow of work actively reminds employees to approach change from a new perspective. These additions to the workflow can help create an environment more conducive to creative problem-solving and innovative solutions.
Effective workflows make it easy for employees to collaborate on tasks, whether it’s an experimental new product or the latest change management project. Bringing together different perspectives improves problem-solving and produces a broader range of change management solutions.
Herrmann’s approach to idea generation works because it takes us out of ourselves and our comfort zones and away from how we normally see our brands. And among [the] wacky ideas, some genuine nuggets and a few real gems have appeared for us.
More Resources for Fostering Creativity, Innovation, and Change
Learning is a lifelong journey, but sometimes we get stuck. Learn about mind hacking and what brain-hacking techniques can make you smarter.
Explore the benefits of the HBDI® and other assessments — DISC, CliftonStrengths, Insights, and MBTI — in helping your team learn about themselves to work together better.
Learn how to leverage your HBDI® Profile to create a personalized user guide and unlock your full potential in both personal and professional settings.
Power Successful Change Through Innovation at Work
Whole Brain® Thinking, the HBDI® assessment, and the Herrmann Platform have helped individuals, teams, and organizations fuel innovation at work and embrace change for over 40 years. When employees feel comfortable sharing new perspectives and ideas, they approach complex problems in new ways and create truly novel solutions.
By encouraging innovation, experimentation, and collaboration, you can create a culture of creativity that helps you create effective change and stay ahead of your competition.