Quality Progress - March 2018 - 46

Innovation Imperative
starts with people who are good at
seeing opportunities. Not everybody
excels at that. Without those people,
your business will always be fishing
in the dark.
There are those who mistakenly
think that innovation starts with an
idea. If the idea is not related to a
good opportunity, it has no value.
In the quality profession, we have a
high proportion of problem solvers
and those who find solutions. Unfortunately, we're short on people who
are good at seeing opportunity-and
this directly points to the need for
engagement to begin at the recruitment stage.
A word of caution in recruitment:
You may have heard of the mirror
effect, meaning a tendency to recruit
people who mirror your own beliefs
and behaviors, and hence your own
culture. The key to the two innovation stages described earlier is
diversity. These first stages are the
creative phase of innovation, and
creativity thrives on diversity.4

Different behaviors,
different cultures

That brings us to how to strengthen
engagement and how it differs with
each phase of the innovation process
you work with.
Creative people respond to recognition. They want their peers to
see them as creative. It is also much
easier to engage people in creative
work.
Execution people develop working solutions and deliver them. They
are numbers-driven and respond
better to rewards. I'm generalizing, but these are important
considerations.
I mentioned that Crosby stressed
recognition-not just to engage
people, but also to build a culture of
quality. Terrence E. Deal and Allan A.
Kennedy famously described culture

46 QP

March 2018 ❘ qualityprogress.com

as "the way we do things around

The behaviors that will release
and develop this knowledge
start with exploration and
interaction with new people
and having new experiences.

here."5 It's about behavior.
+ In the creative phase, the behaviors we want to encourage are
exploration, collaboration and
experimentation.
+ In the execution phase, collaboration remains essential, but the
primary new behaviors we must
focus on are need for speed, being
results driven and attention to
detail.
What this says is that we are
looking for two quite different sets
of behavior and hence two different
cultures that will coexist.
The three primary behaviors in the
creative phase imply a high degree
of freedom-especially in exploration
and collaboration. This, in turn, indicates a lot of process variation, which
is counterintuitive for the quality
professional.
One of the most frequently asked
questions from people interested
in innovation is, "How do we create
a culture of innovation?" What
people are really asking is, "How do
we create a culture of creativity?"
The reason for the question is that,
intuitively, they also understand that
creativity flies in the face of the classic quality culture that aims to reduce
process variation, increase process
efficiency and produce highly predictable results.
A culture of creativity allows time
and space for people to explore,
collaborate and experiment. The
creative phase of innovation needs
an open network and a loose process
for new ideas to emerge, and the

freedom to change direction as new
knowledge emerges. Unfortunately,
the search for speed and efficiency
has driven this out of organizations.
As the discipline of knowledge
management emerged in the
late 1990s, it became recognized
that typically only 20% of an
organization's knowledge can be
documented. The majority of knowledge is the tacit and subconscious
knowledge in people's minds.
The behaviors that will release and
develop this knowledge start with
exploration and interaction with new
people, and having new experiences.
You repeatedly hear the expression,
"Step outside of the box." Today, we
work in a box, have lunch in a box
and think in a box. People want to be
released from this mental prison.
Giving people time and space is
the first step to a creative culture. It is
this release from prison that makes it
so easy to engage people in creative
thinking.

Wanted: Diversity

Interacting with people who are
different from ourselves is the next
step, which isn't easy. The mirror
effect often draws us to people of
similar backgrounds and experience.
Diversity creates tension, but this
tension creates new knowledge.
Research by Scott Page, a Caltech
professor, showed how a group of
ordinary but diverse people had far
greater collective knowledge than
a group of Mensa-level, or high IQ,
people. The ordinary guys consistently outperformed the Mensa
people at problem solving because
knowledge.6
of their collective knowledge.
Collaborating with people who
are different is not easy, so we must
discover and respect their strengths.
As Stephen Covey said, "Seek to
understand before you seek to be
understood."7


http://www.qualityprogress.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Quality Progress - March 2018

Seen and Heard
Expert Answers
Progress Report
Mr. Pareto Head
Career Coach
My Quality Story
In the Right Direction
A Different Kind of BBQ
Gaining Ground
Impeding Progress
Innovation Imperative
Statistics Spotlight
Standard Issues
Marketplace
Footnotes
Back to Basics
Quality Progress - March 2018 - INTRO
Quality Progress - March 2018 - cover1
Quality Progress - March 2018 - cover2
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 1
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 2
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 3
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 4
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 5
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Seen and Heard
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 7
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Expert Answers
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 9
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Progress Report
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 11
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 12
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Mr. Pareto Head
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Career Coach
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 15
Quality Progress - March 2018 - My Quality Story
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 17
Quality Progress - March 2018 - In the Right Direction
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 19
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 20
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 21
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 22
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 23
Quality Progress - March 2018 - A Different Kind of BBQ
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 25
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 26
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 27
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 28
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 29
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 30
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 31
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Gaining Ground
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 33
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 34
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 35
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 36
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Impeding Progress
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 38
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 39
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 40
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 41
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 42
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 43
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Innovation Imperative
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 45
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 46
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 47
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Statistics Spotlight
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 49
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 50
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 51
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 52
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 53
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Standard Issues
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 55
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 56
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 57
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Marketplace
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 59
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Footnotes
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 61
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 62
Quality Progress - March 2018 - 63
Quality Progress - March 2018 - Back to Basics
Quality Progress - March 2018 - cover3
Quality Progress - March 2018 - cover4
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