One obvious step executives could pursue to bring innovation to their companies is to create a team to make it happen. But that’s not enough. The team also needs autonomy within the main company to pursue the needed work.
So says Stephanie Farsht, a former Target innovation executive profiled on KelloggInsight. She’s an adjunct lecturer of innovation and scholarship at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
“If you’re buried underneath the more traditional portions of the business, so much of the motivation is to keep the business going and to hit the numbers,” Farsht is quoted as saying. “That does not align well with disruption; you need to be disconnected from the day-to-day and short-term goals and motivations.”
In lieu of that corporate autonomy, Farsht says giving the innovation teams the ability to operate under the radar can also be a good thing. Keeping the team small and financial stakes low in this scenario can help promote development of innovative ideas.
Not having much to work with can help the team thing big and creatively, she argues. In essence, the innovation group acts like a startup, working quietly to develop new, innovative things for the company at large.
Farsht suggests other innovation steps in the KellogInsight piece, and those can be accessed here.