If you want different ideas, you need to be willing to do things differently. That’s exactly what an innovation workshop can offer you.
New or old, large or small, any business looking for reinvention faces a paradox. To find new ideas that stand a chance of transforming what you do, you need the expertise of your team. But the day-to-day effort that goes into running or starting a business can be the very thing that makes it hard to see new ways of doing things.
What you need is a way to shake ideas loose – which is where we come in. Innovation workshops are a structured process which combines your talent with our open-minded facilitation. Together, we can find truly creative solutions to existing problems, and uncover entirely new opportunities.
For us, Innovation Workshops represent a great way to combine our brains with yours – merging new insights with experience, generating new ideas, and starting the process of getting those ideas implementation-ready.
What to Expect
Committing to an innovation workshop requires a cross-section of your team – or potentially your whole team – to give up a chunk of their time. We don’t take that time and collective effort lightly, and we prepare accordingly.
The first thing we want to clarify is the problem we’re solving, and what counts as a good solution to that problem – clarity here helps guide the development, refining, and nurturing of the ideas we generate. We can also help you decide which team members might be valuable, or needed, for a great workshop – we want the right expertise in the room to ensure ideas get properly evaluated, plus a diversity of expertise and thinking styles.
At the outset of the workshop, it’s important to frame the problems and opportunities we’re examining for the whole group, so we’re all tackling the same challenges, defined the same way. And then it’s time for ideas: the more ideas there are, and the weirder they get, the better we like it – and we have plenty of ways to nudge people out of old ways of thinking and into new approaches.
Next, we start taking the best ideas (again, we’ve already done the work to define “best”) and it’s time to start refining them. What’s the case for implementing the idea, and what would it actually take to do? Once we’ve started answering these questions, groups are ready to share and pitch what they’ve created and learned.
From Ideas to Innovation
One of the ways BFM offers value is that we’re not just an ideas partner, we’re an innovation partner. Building and promoting is what we do, so there’s an inbuilt cultural bias towards the belief that once we have an idea, we’re going to do something about it – and the sooner the better.
So when you generate a lot of great ideas, we don’t forget the ultimate goal of any innovation-driven process is to actually innovate.
Fortunately, we have a structured process for making that happen. The first step is grouping related ideas and prioritizing them across two measures: value to the organization, and the organization’s readiness to complete. As you’ve probably guessed, the aim is to identify high-value, high-readiness projects.
Once we really understand which ideas and initiatives are going to move the needle, we can start defining what a minimum viable product for that initiative would look like and what it would take to build. Once we understand that, we’re into the business of project management: cost estimates, dependencies, and budget and resource constraints.
This all sounds very simple. But there’s a reason why change initiatives often generate many ideas but few outcomes. The chasm between ideas and implementation can be a daunting one to leap, which is why experience building digital platforms and products counts for so much – it’s how our team’s skills can help you make the most of your own team’s ideas.