3 ways your culture may be sabotaging innovation

If your business is struggling to adapt to the digital age due to a lack of innovation, it might be time to reconsider your company culture.

By Sarah K. White
May 17, 2017

Companies suffer the most when they're heavily de-centralized, with siloed departments that rarely interact with one another. This results in "fewer knowledge shares and innovative breakthroughs," says Pellas.

However, businesses need to avoid approaching collaboration as just another project -- it's not something that can be booked on a calendar, it needs to become an "end-to-end way of seeing, interacting with and extending the world," says Underkoffler.

"Constant communication is a keystone to digital transformation across any organization and when designers, developers and delivery teams are working together, organic innovation is all but certain," say Pellas.


Lack of unification over common goals

Business leaders need to unify the company under one common goal if they want to encourage innovation. This goes back to encouraging design thinking and encouraging every business unit to work towards the same goal, such as offering user-friendly services and products.

"Varied goals create a disconnect across departments, often leading to inefficient processes and lack of a unified effort to make an impact on innovation," says Pellas.

As always, this requires a top-down approach -- one that executives and managers can model for the rest of the company. If employees fail to see business leaders living up to these standards of innovation, they will follow suit, according to Pellas.

"The company's purpose and vision, its real substance at the largest scale, needs to be part of the air that everyone breathes.," says Underkoffler. He says the "structure and process" of the entire business needs to support lines of open communication and innovative ideas.

If businesses can find this balance, they'll create an environment with endless possibilities and a "human operating system that enables people's best work and thinking to coalesce around powerful new ideas," says Underkoffler.

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