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Innovation is a theme seductive because it is intrinsically a utopia when it comes to implementation. The term "pockets of resistance" makes perfect sense but do not forget that they can be on top or on the basis of any organization. Human beings are averse to change and innovation means doing something that was not done. This brings a lot of insecurities that are chains of any process with the excuse of not being able to "reinvent the wheel." I like this view of businessthinking where two powers, now separated, can come together: the analyticaland creative ability. To me this is the new key to run away pockets of resistance.
In this article http://mindblog.dericbownds.net/2012/01/our-bias-against-creativity...(MindBlog) there is an interesting statement that people are less creative (innovative) when they are uncertain.
So, that means, that you first have to analyze who the "pockets of resistance" are and if they are incompetent or just uncertain. I think you can choose for different strategies on how to handle with these different types. In any case to empower the uncertain ones gave me as a manager greater satisfaction.
@Arne: I like the description of "pockets of resistance". It is a serious problem in traditional organizations.
@Guido: I certainly recognize the tricks of "innovating" college's not being innovative at all but hardly trying to have the most respect of the board. It's hard to pass these control freaks to have contact with a board member.
But how to handle with these guys and dolls (the pockets of resistance). I think it's important that there is at least one board member who really is interested in the different way's of innovation. If not i think it's a hard job.
I think that some organizations just have "boxes to tick in" and one of hem is happens to be called innovation. "Did we do innovation already?" (I noticed this take on innovation particularly in gov. organizations)
I've heard people talk about their companies innovations when they pointed at 'promotional marketing tools' with only a superficial relationship to their core business.
And then there are these "pockets of resistance" in organizations: a group of employees who have innovation in their job-description but have no clear mandate and more importantly no connection to higher management. They have a strategy of "tricking" management into implementing (what they consider) real innovations. Usually this strategy doesn't work, and these corporate change agents can feel powerless and very frustrated.
My experience is that in organizations there often is no clarity about the purpose of their own innovation processes: is it to optimize the existing products or services or is it to create something completely new. There are different skills and methods needed.
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