7 Easy Ways to Innovate With Your Team


Innovation is a huge driving force behind many successful companies aside from marketing to help bring awareness to the consumers about a company’s products and services. With design innovation this is all about introducing something new to the audience or doing something in a way that seems unconventional but gets results within your particular industry. Here are some of the things that we can expect along the journey of innovation. Here we’ll look at seven areas which can help nurture innovation and keep it going for all your graphic design projects. Innovation itself doesn’t have to be completely original, in some cases you can even innovate by adapting ideas and tactics outside of your native industry into a specific scenario that has not been commonly adapted. Therefore you have total creative freedom and an abundant amount of sources which to pull innovation and completely change the game.

The market itself has a vast amount of needs which must be met so the old tested methods may not always work so well with the new and emerging market trends. What’s cutting edge and seems to be on the rise will quickly make old systems obsolete until its reemerged again as something “new” which in fact it was just forgotten and then brought back. Although there are many different views on what is considered innovative and how solutions can be approached in the creative field it seems frequent that creating something fresh for people to experience keeps them coming back for more. Innovation isn’t always a simple process and it can involve a lot of testing and making a lot of mistakes along the way in order to produce something that’s going to be sustainable and, most importantly, something you’re proud of.

Here are a few tactics you can use along your journey to originality:

A Collaborative Effort

Sharing ideas among a group is by far one of the best ways to come up with a new idea. As one person shares her thoughts and experience other people begin to join in as well in a compare and contrast game until new ideas are formed. Using a collaborative effort during a think tank based idea generation will cause you to come up with the most outrageous and unlikely connections among seemingly unrelated subjects.

Communication is Key

If you really want to know what’s going on inside you employees with their thinking some people try to resort to asking the right questions in order to gain a better insight. Although the best way to really understand anyone is through effective listening and aligning with that person in order to establish better rapport. While someone is stating how they view certain ideas asked consider asking them to explain a little more detail and empathizing with them so that they fill as comfortable as possible sharing with you the core of their ideas you might be able to use to solve a specific problem. Also, schedule regular intervals for meeting to take place and have your teams write down any list of questions they may have that can only be answered during these once a week “brainstorms” to conveniently prevent those random “got a minute?” interruptive office scenarios.


Open to new ways of doing and being

By opening up your mind to new possibilities you create the chance for new and unexpected things to slip in. If you try letting go the attempts to control the entire project step-by-step piece by piece, I’m not proposing complete disorder and chaos but when it comes to innovation you have to allow room for the unexpected to naturally grow. It may even foster into something new and completely unknown or predictable; seldom are great ideas born alone, as said earlier, but are usually the result of being open-minded. Even in the face of adversity of being wrong, being open-minded can spawn new things and have your old ideas transformed into creative innovations even more exciting than what you may have initially anticipated.

Focus on contribution

Too many people have a tendency to be naturally focused on what they can get out of a situation and not focused enough on the value that can be added to the scope of a culture or industry. There is immense value and opportunity to add so much innovation to those in need if you just take the time to look, ask, and listen. What are some strengths that you or your team has that could be leveraged? What about individual strengths that can be used within each team member to maximize the intended outcome within a particular project? If you allow all your key players to contribute their natural strengths some of them will naturally feel as though they have given immense value toward the situation.

Get clear on your desired outcome

I’m sure you’ve heard this text before “without vision the people perish” this age-old wisdom has always rung true, you need to have a vision of where you’re going a target destination in order to get there. When you have a roadmap in place of where you’re going or strategic plan this will allow you to work quickly and taking each step with certainty because you’re working toward specific clear outcome.

Embrace complexity and uncertainty

Let’s face it we don’t have the answer to everything nor do we know how are things I worked out in the end therefore this should come as no surprise. The amount of risky actions and unforeseen circumstances happens to all of us no matter how well we plan or were we are in our process; things sometimes seem to creep up and hinder our progress. But without venturing into the unknown you can never know the depths of where our ideas would ultimately take us and bring us back again. As you take on challenges or things become more complex you’ll eventually develop a sense of discipline as you pursue on despite the obstacles that you face. This makes for great boost in confidence and progression.

Be bold

What I mean by being bold is having the guts and the courage to take massive action toward achieving a specific goal and yes a fair amount of strategic planning is necessary if you want to successfully exit any campaign or endeavor.  Once you begin the process everything else begins to build momentum usually to start the process so that the momentum can eventually tear itself towards the attainment of your desired outcome. First and foremost make a decision, deliberately choose to do something effective, pick one thing and JUST DO IT, do something toward the attainment of your goal, make that phone call, write a paragraph, setting a meeting, write the proposal; you’ll get the idea, it looks like Nike had it right all along!

Obviously there are many paths to graphic design innovation and this list is not a definitive gospel on approaching your creative ideas. But what I do encourage you to do is experiment try things out see what works to it doesn’t work or if something seems to clash with the client’s goals and by all means ignore it and move on to something else or better yet re-innovative and re-write it.

These are all your rules to make or to borrow from and adapt in a collaborative effort to find something that works specifically for you, as Bruce Lee once said “Absorb what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is essentially your own.” Maybe there are no rules to innovation, just guidelines.