“Vulnerability is the cradle of innovation, creativity and change.” – Bren Brown
Innovation is truly the zeitgeist of the times. So often in conversations about entrepreneurship, development and progress, it’s easy to forget that innovation has a human dimension that goes beyond the buzzwords of modern life. In fact, it is the imagination and creativity of humanity that drives us to innovate, and we sometimes recognize that the barriers we face are also organic and human, whereas the very organic and human. is unlikely to be Lack of funding, organizational incoherence, lack of an enabling culture are all legitimate issues, but fear, reluctance to take leaps of faith, experience lack of focus and motivation, etc. The same is true of feelings. If innovation is born out of emotional organicity and a desire to change the world, then the emotional side of this transformational quest cannot be ignored.
McKinsey research shows the relevance of emotional hurdles in the innovation process. Experts Laura Furstenthal, Alex Morris and Eric Roth summarize their findings and write: Loss aversion takes the wheel and drives us to hedge our bets, given that our decisions may jeopardize promotions or rewards. A career in innovation, let alone a single innovation project. The second greatest human barrier to innovation is the difficulty of dealing with uncertainty and loss of control. This fear afflicts average or below-average innovators almost three times more than major innovators. Innovation is something we all feel to some degree. Group conformity and tribalism are basic survival instincts, but these tendencies can jeopardize the success of corporate innovation. ”
Alongside these empirical studies, there are simple observations that support the existence of internal barriers to innovation. His professor at the University of Virginia, Ed Hess, writing for Forbes, says that innovation is not just a cognitive process, it is also an emotional process. It can be scary because you have to do something new and novel, and it takes courage to enter the unknown. Hess further points out that protecting our ego and fear in this process of exploring the unknown are his two major emotional inhibitors to innovation. Simply put, in order to maintain our self-image and keep the possibility of failure at bay, we can avoid tremendous risks that may pay off.
The problem here, simplified in this way, is puzzling – there are internal, mental and empirical constraints that can hinder innovation, and they are not material or external. , modifying them is not a direct operation. Dealing with emotional hurdles requires embracing your vulnerability, feeling all your fears, and ultimately rationalizing them. Your fears, insecurities, and self-image issues stem from your desire to remain stable, the magnitude of your risks, and your petrified aversion to the idea of failure. You can rationalize your thoughts and consider what a particular ambition means to you and the potential impact you may have. Productive thinking can be achieved after understanding the often unrecognized and ignored emotional pain that plagues the visionary process of innovation and prepares for the ups and downs that come with future-oriented and ambitious missions. .
In fact, once emotions are handled correctly, they can drive you to dare to innovate based on the motivations you create and believe in yourself. world. An innovation strategy must therefore derive from what precedes the actual process of innovation itself. Wise efforts to overcome fears and insecurities and to combat these emotional barriers will ensure forward progress in our efforts to create exemplary change.
(The author is the Founder and CEO of Upsurge Global and Adjunct Professor and Advisor at EThames College)