Are you too busy to improve?

Last week I wrote about how we can learn to innovate by learning from haute cuisine chefs. Besides learning from models I think it is also important (1) to asses who we are and (2) to make a good assessment of the organization where the innovation should take place. When assessing ourselves and the organization it is often quite easy to come to the superficial conclusion that we all are too busy to innovate.  At the same time we often know that it is not quite true, but when we innovate we need to overcome the structural inertia that promotes stability. Time is only one of the factors that is needed for change. In the picture below a more comprehensive view on individual change is presented to discover for ourselves how we deal with these  factors.

Individual change

To innovate it is important to build a network and to explore needs and solutions. Successful innovators seldomly see this as a seperate activity of work, but they do this in action with their daily traditional work. Time does not restrict them from innovating. When there is real potential value on the horizon it is more easy to allocate more time to the potential innovation. They are in that respect clear about what procedures they need from the organization to convert initiatives into actions.

Innovative organizations at the same time should create an environment where employees can build a network, explore needs and solutions and create procedures that convert initiatives into actions. It is my personal opinion that organizations as well as employees want to be more innovative and there is probably enough time and room to innovate. However finding the right time to discuss meaningful matters is often the biggest challenge to keep momentum and inspiration.



Norbert Bol


Makkonen, H., Johnston, W. J., & Javalgi, R. R. G. (2016). A behavioral approach to organizational innovation adoption. Journal of Business Research,69(7), 2480-2489.

Picture credit: aafromaa via Scandinavian / CC BY


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