03. Nov. 2016

How to generate and manage ideas (and make a fortune)

by Kaizen Institute UK

Companies that invest in the creation of a process for generating ideas will be able to generate more new ideas and ensure these are followed-up.

 

The world is changing - every day something new comes along: a new idea that makes a difference, reaches new places, new people and gives an answer to new problems and challenges.

 

How many times have you been in work meetings which ideas come up but are then abandoned for lack of time or planning? This lack of follow-up and follow-through with ideas is more common than you may think. However, companies that invest in creating a process of generating ideas will be able to generate more new ideas and to ensure their follow-up.

 

Ideation – the structured process of generating ideas – is the first step in making innovation part of the DNA of a company.

 

At an early stage, and due to the challenge, multidisciplinary teams are formed, representing different departments of the company, since the complementary visions will contribute to the wealth of ideas.

 

This ideation process leads to concrete and sustainable innovation. Besides that, innovation generates growth, which is essential. The ideation process is carried out according to the following steps:

 

- Scoping: the first step is to define the proposed challenge in a clear and detailed way. Focusing is essential to succeed in achieving what is defined as the goal. The more focused on the goal the team is, the more likely it will be to generate ideas that meet the challenge.

 

- Characterising the state of the art: after setting the goal, teams must analyse information which will help understand the context of the challenge.

 

- Generating ideas: many ideas will come up with the application of this method. The ideas that will arise will be related to the initial goal and adequately framed within the collected information.

 

- Filtering ideas: ideas go through the screening phase, in which they are evaluated for how adequate they are in terms of the initial goal and if they can be implemented in practical terms. Only the best ideas get to the next stage.

 

- Prioritising ideas: after a limited number of ideas (two or three) are approved, they should be placed in an order according to their priority.

 

- Project development: the last stage of the process is to create a roadmap for the development of the selected idea, which is the structured way the idea will be put into practice.

 

"Innovation is central for economic prosperity" (Michael Porter). However, we cannot forget that there can't be innovation without ideation.

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