Engage colleagues in a transparent and visual process

When you have  your team objectives in place and the time to improve your business your next important challenge is  to run a smooth idea generation process.

Sticky notes are great for that purpose, but they are just containers. You need  to set up a prioritization process to help you answer the question: Which ideas should we implement next? Which ideas takes too long time or has too little impact? And which ideas should we never consider implementing?

Whiteboards are used to ensure that everybody sees what gets prioritized and which ideas are considered most likely to impact the teams objectives.

Evaluate the ideas in four groups

Outline a 2 by 2 matrix that has Impact on one axis and Ability to implement on the other as shown below.

engagage MAC Matrix

Evaluate each idea based on the expected impact on the team objectives and on the effort needed to implement and succeed with the idea.

  1. Pearls are the quick-wins that you should always look for. They  are likely to succeed throughout all 4 phases of implementation and will have a significant impact on your team objectives.
  2. Oysters could have a high impact on your team objectives, but they are hard to implement. These ideas often involve multiple stakeholders and lots of coordination and discussion before the effect can be harvested.
  3. Bread & Butter are the small, simple and low risk ideas. Often theses ideas are associated with some kind of maintenance task.
  4. A white elephant is a possession which its owner cannot dispose of and whose cost, particularly that of maintenance, is out of proportion to its usefulness. This means that the probability of the idea to succeed is low and that the impact on the teams objectives are low.

More on organic innovation 4 steps to get ahead of competition through organic innovation

Good luck! I will be happy to hear from you if you want to share your own experiences with continuous improvements. Don’t be a stranger!

Kristian Steen Holme


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