It’s no secret everyone wants to innovate and to be innovative, and you can propel it forward by adding a lot more of the word”yes” into your vocabulary.
I don’t mean saying yes to more meetings, more red tape, and more hierarchy -but instead, saying yes to more PLAY.
“The truth about big innovation is that you get what you play for. If that looks like a typo — if it’s jarring to see “innovation” and “play” in the same sentence or to hear anyone suggest that you, a manager, should play at anything — then this blog post is for you”, write Mark Sebell and Vijay Govindarajan in this latest post from the Harvard Business review.
Everyone – leadership included, should come to play.
What it means to play is to be more open to new ideas and to have the ability to test out, and toy around with products or inventions you may have scoffed at in the past. Innovation could leave you feeling vulnerable, and risking failure – and you’ll need to asses the level of risk that’s right for you and your organization. But, when everyone comes to play, and it’s easier to get on the field instead of sitting on the sidelines, you’re at least putting more ideas on the field than watching them go by, judging them as they pass. Playing, in this case means removing the barriers that were once in place so that you can say “yes, and” where you used to say, “yes, but”, and letting teams run with an idea for a little while so that they fail faster and better instead of never trying at all.