Cognitive biases are killing innovation – what can we do about them?
We’ve seen triviality bias at play. We’ve seen confirmation bias and the backfire effect at play too.
And we’ve seen the impact of these biases in a group setting – it’s killing your team’s creativity – and ability to innovate.
Luckily for you, we’ve got 3 easy ways to avoid these biases in this 3rd and final instalment of The Death of Ideas – Part 3!
The one where you prioritise diversity of thinking
A diverse range of opinions and thoughts is key to avoiding bias.
So, you need to think carefully about who you hire and who you work with. We’re talking about championing positive inclusion – you have to actively seek out people whose opinions will be different.
The goal isn’t to ‘tick’ the boxes for your Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) policies. The goal is to seek different people from different backgrounds, and invite them to share their unique perspectives.
So, this doesn’t just apply to the notion of hiring differently – it means including people from different departments in your conversations too, instead of having the ‘usual suspects’ in the room who will spout the same thoughts and ideas time and time again…
Maybe a creative is fascinated with astrophysics. Or a marketing executive is finally learning about their heritage. Perhaps an analyst has a penchant for Renaissance paintings. Or a comms person is obsessed with rhythm and pace. Maybe a project officer is learning 5 different languages…
Diversify your team and you’ll diversify the way you team will think, act and approach the problems at hand.
Essentially if you focus on diversity of thinking, you’ll amplify the creativity and innovation of your team ten fold.
The one where you can ask and/or answer
Innovation management should be a democratic process, where everyone is invited to chip in.
You need to invite them, yes. But you must follow that invitation through by creating a welcoming and supportive environment.
People need to know that:
- Their voices will be heard
- Their ideas will be considered
- Their questions are valid
- Their unique perspective is vital
Nailing an inclusive environment is key to productivity and creativity. The best way to do that is by refining your innovation process, which brings us nicely onto…
The one where you use due diligence
This is all about the process.
You need to set up a process in which innovation is inclusive, creative and evidence-based.
If you can do that, people will be with you all of the way – that’s how innovation will flourish.
So, when you’re devising your process, you need to focus on two things:
Answering these questions: have you…
- Focused on your customers? (customer is key!)
- Asked the right questions?
- Created an evidence bank?
- Interpreted your data from multiple angles?
- Tested your solution?
- Ensured it’s credible and profitable?
- Drawn up a go-to-market plan?
Personalising it to best suit your team and stakeholders.
There’s a lot to consider when strategising. Not least, making it a fun and engaging (and effective!) process – innovation feeds off inspiration and creativity.
And that’s our approach at Groundswell – we use unique approaches with every client to make sure you, your team and your stakeholders are getting the best outcomes – mitigating biases by amplifying diverse ways of thinking!