If you want to innovate, irrespective of title or responsibility, start by recognizing your greatest asset: your mind. Change, development, and values are the foundation of a culture of continuous innovation.
Historically, inventors have been motivated by a desire to better the lives of those around them. Their aim was to find a solution to a particular problem. Often, the problem was far larger than the individual and affected the lives of many. Innovators of the past that we are familiar with have addressed problems that have impacted large numbers of people. From a systems dynamics perspective, complex systems require innovative solutions or the system, including society, will entropy.
For their goals to be met, successful innovators must have a larger perspective than the typical individual and be somewhat benevolent. Five attitudes seem to be shared by innovators who are successful, whether they are addressing large-scale challenges or bringing about gradual change.
A Healthy Discontent with the Current State of Affairs
They think that life can be better, whether it’s via the development of a new product, method, market, mentality, or cultural shift. Every day, innovators strive to improve things. In terms of how and where they seek ideas, they are not confined. For them, the sky’s the limit.
Consequently, innovators will not rest until the world they perceive has been improved in some way or another. To do this, they constantly observe, investigate, converse with, and analyze the world around them to come up with new ideas. Motivated, they encourage others to assist them in creating the world they envisage.
As well as making a profit, these same individuals are always coming up with new ideas for improving customer service and efficiency, as well as exploring new markets. They’re on the lookout for ways to make a difference.
The Desire to Better Oneself
The goal of innovators is not just to enhance the lives of others, but also to improve their own lives. Indeed, improving the environment and oneself is often two sides of the same coin. As a result of this, they believe in themselves and believe that they may be “agents of improvement.”
Despite having a positive attitude and believing they can make a difference; they are aware that the most significant change will come from changing themselves first. They are generally unhappy with their own situation and think that they can do and be better than they already are. As company owners, team players, innovators, friends, and so on, they all harbor the attitude that they can make a greater contribution to the world.
People Who Excel at Innovation Tend to Be Resilient
Highs and lows are part of the adventure that is innovation. No one gets it right on the first try; it is rarely a linear progression.
A resilient mindset is therefore an inextricable characteristic of innovators. Baby steps towards improvement are taken by measuring what is effective and what is not. As they have learned through experience, incremental, steady progress leads to innovation.
“Innovative individuals do not surrender or submit to defeat. Rather, they accept failure as a means of development,” says Jamie Johnson, CEO of FJP Investment, “It’s not that innovators fail, but rather that their attempts get them closer to finding the best solution. They haven’t failed, they have found many ways that didn’t work.”
Resilience is not only about persevering in the face of adversity. It becomes a part of one’s own personal development process. This tells us something about how we can all improve our own lives – innovators or not – we can use any external situation to improve our internal state of being.
A Resourceful Mindset
Oftentimes, innovators may not know all the answers at the start of a venture or idea. Learning, collaborating, and locating tools to help them achieve success are all investments they make. People, finances, materials, time, and even mindful reflection are all examples of resources that may be used.
A desire to discuss issues and to reach out to others to learn and cooperate is a significant component of resourcefulness. No one has all the answers, so tapping into the talent and ability of others is crucial.
It is possible for innovators to succeed despite a lack of resources, such as time and money. They rely on their surroundings to help them realize their visions. When conventional routes aren’t accessible, innovators turn to other methods, such as watching how-to videos online, experimenting in spare time, creating, altering, or borrowing materials, among other things, to achieve their goals. Notwithstanding any shortage of resources, their creativity helps them to achieve their vision.
Ability to See Reality
For innovators, reality and facts drive their decisions, not wishful thinking. Empirical evidence – feedback and trial and error – have a stronger sway than views and assumptions.
It is common for innovators to seek out input from others to confirm that their own perception of reality is accurate; and that everything should be measured frequently. Commercial decisions are guided by reality, not impulses or suppositions. Consequently, better results are achieved. Awareness of one’s – and indeed others’ – biases and emotions is a crucial trait for successful innovators.