Too Many Cooks do NOT Spoil the Broth

Too Many Chefs

There are many key factors required to achieve a magnificent slow cooked gourmet soup.

First, there is the Chef that coordinates the whole cooking process utilising their wealth of experience based on a proven and never ending method of trial and error leading to the desired soup result. Next are the ingredients that when merged together in the right proportions yield that optimum flavour and texture. Let us also not forget the liquid within which all the ingredients can be distilled, can freely permeate, and then combine to form the necessary soup consistency. Other important requirements are heat, time and a suitable cooking pot to allow the progression of the ultimate soup masterpiece.

A successful Chef will also welcome feedback from their peers and will happily consider their suggestions on other exotic ingredients that may compliment and improve their recipe. Some of these ingredients may provide an immediate taste impact, others may take time to infuse and then add a more complex and subtle addition.

The combined result of all of the above is the achievement of gourmet soup perfection!

However, this soup methodology can also be applied to the process of innovation in the corporate office.

The Chef
There needs to be an owner of the innovation process that coordinates all the idea inputs and directs the progression towards the required end result. The key is to have one Master Chef, but also numerous Apprentice Chefs that can assist and take-over when required so the innovation process doesn’t lose momentum and focus (after-all, without the proper attention from the chef(s), the soup may boil over and be ruined!)

The Pot
Ideas need a receptacle for their collection and development. Suggestions for this could be a corporate internal communication forum where thoughts are shared and discussed in an open environment, a brainstorming session, or other creative methods that meet the cultural needs of the organisation. The pot needs to be of the right size to accommodate all the ideas that might be generated throughout the process. Too small a pot may lead to participant frustration; too large a pot may lead to ideas being lost?

The Ingredients
Ideas need to come from many sources within the corporate organisation. All employees should be invited to participate to allow for greater diversity of thought and enhanced potential creativity. These ideas can then be further refined and combined by the skill of the Chef’s team as appropriate.

The Soup
The business needs to have an overall objective for the output generated from the innovation process. For instance, a Chef will know whether they are planning to make a soup and not a cake! If the objective were deemed to be a cake, then a completely different methodology would be required.

Time, Heat
Ideas need time to develop and mix with others that are placed into the cooking pot. Some ideas need to be broken down further via additional analysis (or heat) following which a new array of exciting and complex ideas may become evident.

You may recall that old saying “Too many cooks will spoil the broth”. Well, in this instance, you need many, many cooks as each cook (or fellow employee) brings with them a wealth of different ideas all based on their own insights and experiences. It is the collection of these ideas that leads to an endless array of innovation and creativity. The secret to innovative success is how these multitudes of ideas are mixed and brought together in a format that reinforces innovation. This is where the role of the Master Chef is so important in blending all these ideas into a soup that meets the requirements and tastes of the organisation.

To conclude, may these ideas help you develop a brilliant soup based on that distinctive taste of your own corporate innovation! Bon appetite!

 

The Room of Thought

Thinking RFID

In the corporate office it is sometimes quite difficult to find a quiet place to think and let your mind explore new and creative ideas owing to the continual work activity permeating throughout the building.

The solution……

What about having a dedicated “Room of Thought” strategically placed in a central position within the building that can be easily accessed by all employees?

This room would comprise the following “thought enhancers”:

1. An array of luxurious sofas
To make the employee comfortable to stimulate some different thoughts.

2. A dark face mask
To eliminate any outside influences that may distract the thinker. Each mask would also be equipped with a facial moisturiser to ensure no thinking side-effects.

3. Ear Muffs
Not your standard everyday ear muffs, but ones that can be used to block out all annoying sounds, or can be fitted with a user selection of thought provoking tones to assist with the creativity journey.

4. Gourmet Food Chute
An individual chute positioned above each sofa that provides a selection of tasty snacks and beverages to maintain the thinker during their moments of inspiration.

5. Foot Feather
To ensure no employees doze off during their time of thinking, a machine would be placed at the end of each sofa that contains a large feather that would randomly touch the feet of the employee to maintain optimum maintenance of thought.

6. Voice Activated Memo
Rather than having to be interrupted to stop and write your ideas of innovation in a book, each sofa would come equipped with its own voice activated memo writer that would accurately record ideas of creativity. The user would just need to whisper these thoughts and the recorder would develop a precise transcript.

I’m sure that many businesses would see the benefit of this “Room of Thought” and with time the concept will be a standard design in many leading office layouts!

 

The Innovation Index

2 stars

When seeking out an exciting restaurant to savour and appreciate some fine gourmet delights, the dining patron has the ability to select an appropriate eating establishment via an internationally recognised rating system characterised by the number of “Michelin Stars”. The higher the number of “stars”, the greater the eating experience!

Wouldn’t it be great to have a rating system along the lines of the “Michelin Stars” for a corporate organization’s culture of innovation? (As a suggestion, these ratings could be called the “Innovation Index”, or some other creative innovative name..)

“Innovation Index”:
1 = Boring and very conservative workplace
2 = The workplace is innovative now and then
3 = There are times of brilliance, but not consistent
4 = Wow!!!

The “Innovation Index” could be promoted in the organization’s internal and external communications, websites and could even be stencilled under the company name in their registered offices.

Job seekers could use the “Innovation Index” to identify potential employers of choice, and those to keep well away from?

How would your company rate on the “Innovation Index”?