Most teams that I work with claim that they would like to be more innovative. And all of them would like to see better bottom line results, such as growth in market share, and better client communication and loyalty.
So how can you get these results with your team? One word: diversity.
When I was producing my sketch comedy TV show, I took some heat because the show was perceived as being too white and too male. And you know what? That ...
It would be good to be Shonda Rhimes, wouldn’t it? She’s the creator and producer of not one, not two, but three hit TV shows: Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away with Murder. Along the way she’s made the careers of numerous actors, entertained millions of viewers, and, by the way, amassed a net worth of some $60 million. Not too bad! So how can you achieve results like this in your world, and with your people?
David Bowie existed before Ziggy Stardust, but it was Ziggy Stardust that put him on the map. The striking, glam costume; the red hair; the over-the-top Spiders from Mars tour—all these elements, plus, of course, the music, shot David Bowie into stardom. But the glam rock era eventually faded. And if David Bowie had stayed there, he would have been solely of that time, and faded along with it.
All businesses depend on innovation to stay ahead and thrive in an ever-more-competitive landscape, and all innovation begins with a creative idea. But many businesses have set up policies that actually make it harder for people to come up with and/or implement these vital creative ideas. Is yours one of them?
Elite athletes will tell you that much of their physical performance is driven by what they put in their bodies. Elite leaders will tell you that much of their mental performance is driven by what they put in their brains — both through their eyes and their ears. So what do you think they listen to?
Steve Jobs! Mark Zuckerberg! Elon Musk! All of them have produced (and, in some cases, are continuing to produce—although Steve has lowered his output a bit) breakthrough results! What must it be like to live in their world, to breathe their rarefied air! Well, here’s the thing. Breakthrough results are not limited to the elite few. You can produce breakthrough results just as well as anyone else. But first, you may need to let go of some of the habits ...
You all know Bill Nye the Science Guy. If you’re of a certain age, you grew up watching him on TV. If you’re beyond a certain age, your kids grew up watching him on TV. But did you know that Bill Nye the Science Guy was invented out of desperation on January 10, 1987? And it all happened because a low-paid comedy writer asked a different question.
There’s a lot to be said for creative ideas that push the needle forward, even incrementally. But where do you go when you need a truly breakthrough idea? The kind of idea that will revolutionize your business—maybe even your entire industry—and cause your competition to wonder if they’d be better off just closing up shop? If that’s the kind of breakthrough you’re looking for—you need a wacky neighbor.